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Buccaneers projected to get a seventh-round compensatory pick

The Bucs lost more players in free agency than they signed for the first time in years.

NFL: Carolina Panthers at Tampa Bay Buccaneers Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will get a compensatory draft pick for the first time since 2010, when they got the 253rd in the draft and used it to select Erik Lorig.

According to Over The Cap’s early projections for the 2018 NFL draft, the Bucs will get a seventh-round pick to compensate for their net loss of Bradley McDougald in free agency.

Compensatory picks are awarded based on net losses in free agency, with players signing more expensive contracts and contributing being valued more highly. THe highest pick a team can get is a third-rounder.

The Bucs lost four qualifying players in free agency this year, losing Mike Glennon, Russell Shepard, McDougald and Akeem Spence to significant contracts, while signing DeSean Jackson, Chris Baker and J.J. Wilcox. Four players against three, with McDougald’s low contract giving them a seventh-round pick.

That seventh-rounder will help compensate for the 2018 seventh-round pick the Bucs gave up to trade up for defensive tackle Stevie Tu’ikolovatu this year.

Of course, these are only preliminary projections that can still change based on regular season playing time, and obscure rule changes we’re not privy to. So take these projections with a small grain of salt.