The draft is about 12 hours away and all fans are excited for who their team will come away with tonight. Mock drafts are fun to read for a few weeks, but after a few months they get old and repetitive. It really is just all speculation. It feels as if this year there are more unknowns, especially in the top 5. We all want the absolute best case scenario for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and below is my opinion on the ideal situation come tonight.
A quarterback is almost guaranteed to go at #1 to the Browns, but then again it is the Browns, so you really never know what they will do. For the Buccaneers sake, they should hope this selection is Sam Darnold. The reason being is that if any other quarterback is taken at #1 overall, the Giants will surely take Sam Darnold with the #2 selection, which means the first three picks are guaranteed to be quarterbacks. In my dream scenario, that is not good for Tampa Bay.
Next on the clock would be the New York Giants. The Giants could go in many different directions. They could trade the pick, they could select Saquon Barkley or Quenton Nelson and they can even elect to select Josh Rosen, who is the second best quarterback behind Darnold. The Buccaneers should hope that this pick is Saquon Barkley because it will continue to push one of the three remaining quarterbacks further down the board.
With the third overall pick, the New York Jets are nearly guaranteed to select a quarterback. It really doesn’t matter for the Buccaneers sake who they select, so im going to go with Baker Mayfield. Baker has been linked to the Jets for nearly three weeks now so I’d be surprised if it is anyone else. With two of the first three picks being quarterbacks, Tampa Bay is in pretty decent shape because the next three teams on the clock aren’t quarterback needy.
The Browns select again at #4 and this pick has the ability to change who is available at 7 for the Bucs. As it stands right now, I have Cleveland selecting Bradley Chubb and pairing him with Myles Garrett, last year’s first overall selection. The Browns can look to trade this pick to the Bills or maybe the Cardinals so they can select their franchise signal caller, but in my best case scenario for Tampa Bay, Cleveland stays and takes Chubb.
The Broncos are up at #5 and Quenton Nelson is still on the board. With a need at left guard, John Elway selects the future pro bowler and pairs him on the left side of the line with last year’s first round pick Garret Bolles. Elway could trade out of this pick, but remember this is a best case scenario for Tampa Bay.
The Colts need a star player. There is simply no other way to put it. This team lacks talent, especially on the defensive side of the ball, which is why I think they will go defense in the first round. I think the Colts take Roquan Smith who will anchor their defense for years to come.
So now we get to Tampa and boy did this turn out to be an incredible scenario for them. To recap, Darnold, Barkley, Mayfield, Chubb, Nelson and Roquan Smith are all off the board. The Bills have still not traded up for a Quarterback, but they will at #7. Tampa Bay receives #12, #22, #65 for the #7 overall selection. The Bills trade up and take Josh Rosen. Rosen at #7 is a steal for Buffalo and the team doesn’t have to part ways with next year’s first round pick.
Not only do the Bucs get their 3rd round pick back, they also add another first round pick to fill holes in either the secondary or along the offensive line. It would be a dream scenario for Tampa Bay if they only moved back 5 spots, but in the process added another first round pick. Some prospects tampa can add with two first round picks would be Jaire Alexander, Vita Vea, Derrius Guice and Mike McGlinchey.
Every Buccaneers fan should hope that by the time Tampa is on the clock, the Buffalo Bills haven’t already made their move up the draft board.