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The Buccaneers Need More Cornerbacks?

In his pre-draft press conference today, Mark Dominik spoke on looking at cornerbacks in the draft. "I don't think you can ever have enough cornerbacks," said the Bucs' General Manager. It seems the Bucs have a fever, and the only prescription is 'More Cornerbacks'. 

There's certainly a core of truth to that statement. This is a passing league, and good cornerbacks are both hard to find and very valuable. While Dominik refused to touch the Talib issue for now, I'm sure that plays a role as well. Fact is that the only reliable cornerbacks the Bucs have going into 2011 are Ronde Barber and E.J. Biggers, while Myron Lewis has a lot of potential but not a lot of skill right now. Ronde Barber is close to the end of his career and no one knows how long he'll remain with the Bucs. Biggers is a solid cornerback but won't ever be more than that. If the Bucs do retain Aqib Talib and manage to keep him on the straight and narrow the situation looks a lot better, but even then it wouldn't hurt to add some talent at the position. 

The good news in all of this: the secondary and especially the cornerback position has been strong for the Bucs over the past years, and Raheem Morris has done a great job grooming late-round prospects to contribute quickly. Raheem used to be the team's Defensive Backs coach, of course, and this has shown on the field. While the team needs to add a pass rush, and a pass rush will make the cornerbacks look better too, you can build a defense around defensive backs. That's exactly how Raheem schemes his defense as well, starting with pass coverage. While cornerbacks weren't all that important when Monte Kiffin still ran the defense this has changed, and the new Buccaneers will require more and more cornerbacks. This opens the door for another 1st-round selection of a cornerback, although I don't expect that to happen. However, I certainly wouldn't be surprised to see the Bucs grab a couple cornerbacks in the draft, or even pursue a highly-priced free agent cornerback like Nnamdi Asomugha or Jonathan Joseph once the lockout ends.