You have to respect Mark Dominik. He is no floormat at his position. He has pursued and inked multiple offseason signings from high profile players such as Vincent Jackson and Carl Nicks to mid-road reliables such as Eric Wright and Amobi Okoye. When he saw an elite WR on the market, in a division that lacks disciplined pass defense, he cleverly took advantage of a paultry situation that most GM's would of been too coward to dive into. Clever like a Fox. The following gives example to why Tampa's investment into Vincent Jackson might be more effective than you might of thought. The NFC south have notable secondaries, some with playmakers at the cornerback and safety positions, but none of the squad seem complete or Elite. Infact, the NFC south seem to stretch from the 12th worst pass defense to literally, the second worst. Is this just a coincidence or a wrinkle that is ripe for the taking?
None of the teams have pass defense beyond the twentieth ranking. Atlanta eekes Tampa out of the lead with 20th & 21st respectively, with Carolina reigning in 24th and the New Orleans Saint's slumping at bottom of the barrel 30th. Here's the thing, Atlanta was the only team to upgrade their situation with the signing of former-Eagle Asante Samuel and probably will be midpack if you project Samuel to make an impact, as I have. And thats it, besides Tampa themselves, who have drafted S Mark Barron with the seventh overall pick. New Orleans hasn't added anyone of interest to their backfield, and will most likely continue to slump, amid the Bounty Scandal and their aging secondary. Carolina also hasn't added a playmaker to their team, so staying around the 24th ranking seems realistic at this point.
So in response to a sluggish divisional deficiency, Dominik sprinkled in a tidy investment at WR with confidence that Vincent Jackson would be effective. Atleast on paper, at the moment, does it seem like a really smart move. At 6'5" and 230lbs, Vincent Jackson is entering his first year with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and his eighth year in the NFL. With his time at San Diego, he racked up 4,754 yards, and 37 touchdown receptions. His tallest divisional opponent will be 6'1" and predominately shorter, with the average at 5'10-3/4". His wingspan is clearly an advantage but its his soft hands are the bread winners. But I wouldn't lay all of my hopes and dreams for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Vincent Jackson's shoulders, first year of play on a new teams rarely post extraordinary numbers, but with the current trend of poor pass defense play, it could happen.
In my next fanpost, we'll examine the offensive lines of the NFC south!