The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have used the final pick of the third round to select linebacker Kendell Beckwith out of LSU after trading up into that spot from the fourth round.
The Bucs sent their fourth-round pick (number 125) and their sixth-rounder (204th overall) to the New York Jets in exchange for the 107th overall pick.
Beckwith was an inside linebacker for LSU who is likely to fit best as an early-down strongside linebacker for the Bucs, with a significant impact on special teams. At 6’2”, 243 lbs. he’s also a lot bigger than the team’s current linebacking corps, which fits defensive coordinator Mike Smith’s preferences.
Here’s what Lance Zierlein of NFL.com had to say about Beckwith.
Productive full-time starter over last two and a half seasons on talented LSU defenses. Has the size and spirit to play for teams expecting physicality from their inside linebacker, but his game comes with some athletic and coverage limitations. Before his injury, he could have come off the board on Day 2, but may see his stock fall into the third day now. He has starter's ability when healthy.
This is a really confusing pick, to be honest. The Bucs didn’t have a lot of depth at linebacker so it does make some sense, but there just isn’t a lot of value in run-stuffing inside linebackers who can’t cover. And then there’s the fact that he’s coming off an ACL injury...well, that’s even weirder.
How would you grade the Bucs’ picking Kendell Beckwith?
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Buccaneers draft picks
Round 1: pick 19 (19th overall) - TE O.J. Howard, Alabama
Round 2: pick 18 (50th overall) - S Justin Evans, Texas A&M
Round 3: pick 20 (84th overall) - WR Chris Godwin, Penn State
Round 3: pick 43 (107th overall)
Round 4: pick 19 (125th overall) Traded to the Jets
Round 5: pick 18 (162nd overall)
Round 6: pick 20 (204th overall) Traded to the Jets
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)