Going over the 2009 Buccaneers Draft

Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Editor's note: Outstanding FanPost by Buc It, so this gets a Front Page spot -- Sander

After the 2008 draft, the fans thought we were good enough to make a run to the Super Bowl. We were strung along the whole season and missed the playoffs by a game. By the end of the 2008 season, the Glazers felt the need to change things up. They fired Bruce Allen and John Gruden and went on a search for the next General Manager and Head Coach. Who knew they would mess it up so bad, that they resorted to signing a defensive backs coach to be the next head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In doing so, they created what turned out to be one of the busiest offseason of acquisitions and releases in Buccaneer history.

With GM Mark Dominik at the helm, we went after Bruce Allen’s veteran players. The list of players includes: QB Jeff Garcia, QB Brian Griese, RB Warrick Dunn, WR Joey Galloway, WR Ike Hilliard, TE Alex Smith, OT Luke Petitgout, DT Jovan Haye, OLB Cato June, OLB Derrick Brooks, and CB Philip Buchanon. By themselves, they started more games in the NFL than the rest of the team on the Buccaneers that was not released. It was terrible to see Buccaneer’s legend Derrick Brooks be released but with a young regime coming in, they wanted to focus on youth.

In Free Agency, we acquired TE Kellen Winslow Jr. from the Cleveland Browns for a 2nd and 5th round pick. We also signed RB Derrick Ward from the Giants to hopefully replace Warrick Dunn. For insurance, we also signed QB Byron Leftwich and K Mike Nugent due to issues at both positions in the previous season. Let me not forget, we also resigned OT Donald Penn, SS Jermaine Phillips, TE Jeremy Stevens, FS Will Allen, DT Ryan Sims, QB Luke McCown, and WR Michael Clayton. What confused every Bucs fan was why we would give Clayton a brand new, and really expensive, contract for the awful game play he has had since after his rookie season.

1st Round

With the Buccaneers going into the draft, we had issues at Quarterback, Slot Wide Receiver, Defensive Line, Cornerback, and depth on the offensive line. So what do people usually do when a new regime comes in? They draft a Quarterback! And with the 17th pick in the 2009 Draft, the Buccaneers selected Josh Freeman out of Kansas State. With the inside information from being from Kansas State, I feel like HC Raheem Morris had the best information on Josh Freeman coming out of college. He had a strong arm, was fairly accurate, and had the ability to make plays. The issue with him was his work ethic and getting flustered if his offensive line was bad. Although he didn’t last as our QB, he did provide a stream of hope for a few years.

Due to him being a QB, I can’t compare his numbers to Matt Stafford or Mark Sanchez. Also due to our trade for Kellen Winslow Jr., we have a long list of possible players that turned out to be good starters. Before our traded 2nd round pick, there was WR Jeremy Maclin, WR Percy Harvin, DT Ziggy Hood, C Alex Mack, C Eric Wood, FS Patrick Chung, CB Vonte Davis, SS Jairus Byrd, and C Max Unger. All of which showed some sort of athletic promise from their scouting numbers.

2nd Round

Remember above, we traded our 2nd round pick this season to the Browns for Wislow. He brought a certain athletic speed to our TE position. But we also got a guy who was weak in the knees and had to take time off between games so they wouldn’t flare up. So where our 2nd round pick would’ve been, we have G Andy Levitre, SS William Moore, OT Phil Loadholt, OT Sebastian Vollmer, CB Sean Smith, DE Michael Johnson, DT Terrance Knighton, and G Louis Vasquez. These are only the players who fit our needs as of the 2009 draft. So instead of Josh Freeman and Kellen Winslow Jr., which two players would you chose to have play for the Buccaneers?

3rd Round

In the 3rd round, we were still in dire need of help on the defensive line. With Gaines Adams not producing well and Chris Hovan getting old, we needed some youth to bring them back to life. With that idea, we decided to draft DT Roy Miller out of Texas. He was the definition of average. He wasn’t too big or too short, too fast or to slow. If you needed a guy to be average, he was your man.

Rd Pck Pos F. Name L. Name Drafted Team H W 40Yd 20Yd 10Yd Bench Vert Broad 20SS 3Cone CAV/PG
1 32 DT Evander Hood Pittsburgh Steelers 75 300 4.83 2.81 1.62 36 34.5 116 4.45 7.32 30%
3 72 DT Terrance Knighton Jacksonville Jaguars 75 321 4.93 2.84 1.69 21 29.0 105 4.64 7.22 34%
3 81 DT Roy Miller Tampa Bay Buccaneers 73 310 4.93 2.82 1.68 36 32.0 103 4.74 8.01 27%
4 105 DT Henry Melton Chicago Bears 76 280 4.64 2.70 1.58 34.5 121 30%
7 249 DT Clinton McDonald Cincinnati Bengals 74 283 4.83 2.81 1.63 36 38.0 121 4.50 7.25 20%

Even though he was average, comparing him to the best on this list makes him look slow. But Melton and McDonald were both 30 pounds less than him. Although they did run some of the fastest 10 yard splits when including defensive ends. But when you compare agility, it isn’t even close. Miller was 5th slowest, out of 18, in agility this class. By the looks of it, he was our new nose tackle. But what we missed out on was what makes this pick hurt. We missed on the likes of WR Mike Wallace, CB Ladarius Webb, TE Jared Cook, CB Jerraud Powers, DT Henry Melton, WR Mike Thomas, WR Brian Hartline, G T.J. Lang, and FS Glover Quin.

4th Round

Now that we found someone who could stop the run, we still needed someone to rush the passer. And with the 117th pick, we decided to take Kyle Moore out of USC. With his size, he was able to put up a good 40 time and 10 yard split. What he lacked was decent agility.

Rd Pck Pos F. Name L. Name Drafted Team H W 40Yd 20Yd 10Yd Bench Vert Broad 20SS 3Cone CAV/PG
1 3 DE Tyson Jackson Kansas City Chiefs 76 296 4.94 2.79 1.68 20 28.5 102 4.80 7.64 30%
1 16 DE Larry English San Diego Chargers 74 255 4.74 2.71 1.59 24 36.0 115 4.38 7.26 7%
1 18 DE Robert Ayers Denver Broncos 75 272 4.77 2.78 1.62 18 29.5 102 4.46 7.07 18%
3 70 DE Michael Johnson Cincinnati Bengals 79 266 4.61 2.66 1.54 28 38.5 128 4.37 7.42 33%
4 117 DE Kyle Moore Tampa Bay Buccaneers 77 272 4.76 2.80 1.62 22 30.5 105 4.47 7.40 13%

With his speed, he and Robert Ayers look almost identical. That is until you hit their 3Cone speeds. With a difference of .3 seconds, that is a huge gap for a defensive end. It shows that his hips weren’t able to turn smoothly and he had little ability to do most of the moves teams ask defensive ends to do. After Michael Johnson was taken, there wasn’t a quality defensive end in the draft.

Although he turned out to be a good back-up, he wasn’t what the Buccaneers hoped he would become. Because we decided to draft for need, we missed out on WR Louis Murphy, WR Austin Collie, CB Greg Toler, G Tyronne Green, and WR Johnny Knox. And for all 3 of the wide receivers, they were virtually all identical due to their numbers. The only issue was with Austin Collie and his concussions.

5th Round

Now that we had released our starting LT in Luke Petitgout and didn’t know what we had in Donald Penn, we decided to grab someone for insurance. With the 155th pick in the NFL Draft, the Buccaneers selected OT Xavier Fulton. What we now know is he never played in an NFL game. But the question is why?

Rd Pck Pos F. Name L. Name Drafted Team H W 40Yd 20Yd 10Yd Bench Vert Broad 20SS 3Cone CAV/PG
2 54 OT Phil Loadholt Minnesota Vikings 80 332 5.45 3.03 1.75 26 29.0 105 4.77 8.18 41%
2 58 OT Sebastian Vollmer New England Patriots 80 312 5.13 2.90 1.77 32 36.5 111 4.50 7.51 48%
5 155 OT Xavier Fulton Tampa Bay Buccaneers 76 302 5.01 2.87 1.68 27 31.0 111 4.56 7.35 0%
5 162 OT Jamon Meredith Green Bay Packers 77 304 4.99 2.84 1.69 31 28.0 105 4.82 8.01 15%

Although these examples don’t show everyone chosen in the draft, he was the smallest and lightest offensive tackle taken. But what was special about him was that he had speed, agility, and could jump higher than most of the other tackles. But I feel this has to deal with his size. At 6’4" 302, he just didn’t have the size to block some defensive ends. With guys like Tyson Jackson at 6’4’ 295 pounds, he would’ve been run over on every play. Another thing I would've look at is his arm length but I don’t have the data available to see if he should've moved inside to guard.

To be honest, there were a lot of misses in this draft from the 5th round on. But there were also a couple good players. Since we didn’t have a 6th round pick in this draft, here is a few from the 6th round. They include OT Garrett Reynolds, OG Jamon Meredith, SS Chris Clemons, G Matt Slauson, WR Brandon Gibson, FS Jason McCourty, DE Vance Walker, G Paul Fanaika, and CB Captain Munnerlyn. A few players don’t have data which makes seeing talent difficult. But Munnerlyn, Clemons, and McCourty all showed promise.

7th Round

In the 7th round, we had two picks at our disposable. With the 217th pick in the draft, we selected E.J. Biggers out of Western Michigan. He had one of the top 10 yard splits and 40 yard dashes. The issue with him was he didn’t take the agility tests at his pro day or combine. He also was undersized at 180 pounds. Based on these few points, he probably would’ve made, at best, a good slot cornerback.

With our last pick, we decided to take WR Sammie Stroughter out of Oregon State. He was fast and had decent agility but was undersized at 5’10" and 189 pounds. Another issue was that he had the worst vertical by the drafted receivers by 2.5 inches. At best, he was a slot wide receiver.

When it comes to people we could’ve chosen, a few stand out. WR Julian Edelman, RB Rashad Jennings, DT Clinton McDonald, and G Lance Louis all showed potential. Edelman has amazing vertical and agility capabilities. Jennings is a big bruising back with the ability to make moves on a dime. McDonald was undersized but was extremely fast and agile. There were a few situational players taken in between our two picks but those four players turned out to be the best.


In the end, we did miss out on a lot of good players. But we did do a serviceable job with our first two picks in the draft. Josh Freeman turned out to be a good quarterback until he started to have issues with Greg Schiano and his work ethic. Roy Miller turned out to be a decent note tackle while he was here but not much else. Not until the 7th round did get value again for the picks. For a brand new GM and HC, I feel like we did okay.

Previous Draft Articles

Terrible Drafting by the Buccaneers

2004 Buccaneers Draft

2005 Buccaneers Draft

2006 Buccaneers Draft

2007 Buccaneers Draft

2008 Buccaneers Draft

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