ESPN ranked every team for their outlook over the next three seasons. They do this every year, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers came in fifth place last year, which seems somewhat ridiculous. I'm fairly sure it seemed somewhat ridiculous at the time, too.
But this year, the Bucs improved in a lot of places and added a bunch of young players. And the Tampa Bay Buccaneers come in...28th, somehow, with a 'score' (analysts voting) dropping from 74.4 to 57.8.
Drafting Jameis Winston improved the chances for long-term success at quarterback, but the Buccaneers plummeted by double digits in every other category, led by a 25-spot drop in drafting to 30th overall. The No. 5 ranking from one year ago seems laughably high in retrospect, and the current assessment could be a little too harsh. This team remains tough to figure out after falling flat in 2014 following what seemed like a promising offseason. The Buccaneers are no longer getting the benefit of the doubt. --Mike Sando
This seems ridiculously harsh. The Bucs drafted a potential franchise quarterback with the first overall pick, they have two talented, young offensive linemen in Donovan Smith and Ali Marpet and they have young players at the key positions in their defense in Gerald McCoy and Lavonte David. This may not be the best roster in the world, but it certainly has plenty of young talent and the potential to be very good -- a quarterback compensates for a lot of things.
In fact, if there's ever time for the benefit of the doubt it would be right as a team drafts a quarterback with a high pick, right? Sure, the number five overall spot was fairly ludicrous last year what with Mike Glennon and Josh McCown being the quarterbacks and all, but that's no reason to go completely the other way when a team actually improves at most positions.
In fact, this seems like your classic case overcompensating after making a mistake. We ranked the Bucs too high? Better make we sure we definitely don't do that this year!