The 2018 NFL Draft has come and gone. There were many surprises that left fans and media members scratching their heads. For the most part, general manager Jason Licht and his staff did a great job. Licht’s at his best when he maneuvers through the draft, and he did just that once again.
Entering the draft, the Bucs had limited draft selections. After a trade with Buffalo Thursday night, they entered Day 2 with three picks instead of one and actually ended the night with four selections.
The more picks you have, the better the odds of hitting on more. It also gives you a better chance on potentially “reaching” on a certain player. With that said, below is the best draft selection and the worst selection made by Tampa Bay.
Worst Selection - North Carolina CB M.J. Stewart
The Buccaneers selected Stewart as their second pick of the second round after selecting Jones with their first second round pick. The Stewart selection gets a “worst” selection label due to the fact there were other options available. Also, Stewart was projected as a third round pick by several analysts, so this may be considered a reach by Licht and Co. He did not record an interception the past two seasons and while stats don’t matter, he apparently has problems locating the football. The one thing that Stewart does have working for him is that the team can line him up inside, outside, or at safety. But with that second pick of the second round, the team could have perhaps gone with another selection.
Best Selection - USC RB Ronald Jones
Many were hoping for LSU’s Derrius Guice to be the name the Bucs called upon with their first second round pick. Instead, Licht and Co. went with USC stud Ronald Jones. Jones’ ability to mix speed, elusiveness, and power gives head coach Dirk Koetter and the Tampa Bay offense an incredible weapon out of the backfield. To put his elusiveness and speed into perspective, Pro Football Focus charted Jones’ breakaway ability at 46.4 percent which ranked him 12th among the entire draft class. More perspective? Peyton Barber’s breakaway ability was recorded at 32.1 percent and former Bucs running back Doug Martin just 13.1 percent.
Jones can be used in the passing game as well as one of his best traits is catching the football (considered one of the best pass-catching back in the draft). His ability to also run between the tackles and not shy away from contact gives the Bucs many different options to utilize their new back. Jones will most certainly give them a new dimension to their gameplan they haven’t had.