Regardless of whether or not the Bucs stay put in the first round, move back, or even trade out of it, they’ll add a whole lot of talent this week. So let’s take a look at the team’s needs, which draft picks they have, and when the draft starts.
Top draft needs
Safety: The Bucs have three safeties, and all of them are better in the box than they are on the back end—and none of them are stand-out starters. The Bucs need to walk out of this draft with, at minimum, a safety they can groom to eventually start, and preferably an immediate, starting deep safety.
Tight end: While Cameron Brate is a useful receiving tight end and Luke Stocker, the Bucs are pretty thin at tight end and lacking in a player who can both block and be a receiving threat. They could try finding one of those, very rare, tight ends—or they could target an explosive tight end who can really threaten the deep middle of the field.
Running back: Whether you see this as a true need mostly depends on how you see Doug Martin, who’s suspended for the first three games of 2017 and whose roster spot is uncertain. The Bucs have shown significant interest in drafting a running back, and could take one as early as the first round.
Buccaneers draft picks
Round 1: pick 19 (19th overall)
Round 2: pick 18 (50th overall)
Round 3: pick 20 (84th overall)
Round 4: pick 19 (125th overall)
Round 5: pick 18 (162nd overall)
Round 6: pick 20 (204th overall)
Round 7: pick 19 (237th overall)
2017 NFL Draft dates and times
Thursday, April 27 – 8:00 p.m. ET (Round 1 – 10 Minutes Per Pick)
Friday, April 28 – 7 p.m. ET (Round 2 – 7 Minutes, Round 3 – 5 Minutes Per Pick)
Saturday, April 29 – noon ET (Rounds 4-6 – 5 Minutes Per Pick, Round 7 - 4 Minutes Per Pick)