First round mocks are fun, but complete mocks are more fun. Just about every first round mock draft will leave fans wondering: What about (insert position group here)?
Well, in full mocks, we can answer those questions. Thanks to The Draft Network, we can complete a full mock draft which not only seems plausible, but is also quite possible. No first round projections being taken in the seventh round on this simulator.
So, I went ahead and joined the masses in completing my first complete Buccaneers draft of the year, just in time for the NFL Scouting Combine to shuffle the values of everyone involved.
For the sake of argument, I went ahead and captured a few picks before the picks I made and a few after. That way, all of you fine folks have a relative picture of who wasn’t available and who I passed over for the guy I took. Here’s how it went down.
1ST ROUND - DL, QUINNEN WILLIAMS (ALABAMA)
I’m still not completely sold that Gerald McCoy is staying in Tampa Bay much longer. If I’m correct, then the Bucs will likely be looking to replace him before looking to add pieces elsewhere.
Where there’s speculation McCoy can play in a 3-4, we know Quinnen Williams can. Oh, and we also know he can be effective lining up next to Vita Vea on the interior when the Bucs decide to go four strong on the line, or just want to give an extra punch to the middle of the opposing offensive line.
If the Bucs get draft capital back for McCoy, great. If not, well, they’ll have some money and a brand new defensive lineman to make everyone feel better about it.
2ND ROUND - OT, DALTON RISNER (KANSAS STATE)
Dalton Risner projects as a pretty solid right tackle in the NFL. If Tampa Bay sees him in that role from the jump, then this could trigger the release of veteran Demar Dotson.
As much as I like Dotson on the team and as a veteran presence, Risner would give the team, and presumably Jameis Winston, a right tackle to grow old with.
There are some who feel Risner would be better off moving inside, and if the Bucs agree there, then we could see the Wildcats lineman moving in for Caleb Benenoch who struggled to find consistent positives in his first year starting in 2018.
Either way, Risner addresses a position of need, and is a nice value in the second-round.
3RD ROUND - EDGE, ZACH ALLEN (BOSTON COLLEGE)
You don’t draft a guy in the third round looking for him to be plug-and-play, but because he has potential to contribute and may surprise people given opportunity and coaching.
Zach Allen is the definition of this for the Buccaneers. More suited to play as a 4-3 defensive end, Allen isn’t an easy fit in what we all expect Tampa Bay to do.
However, we all know base defense is a relative term and Bruce Arians has put a premium on athletic potential and effort.
Allen didn’t get a lot of chances to play as a stand-up end, and likely didn’t get a whole lot of instruction on it either.
It just so happens there are guys like Jason Pierre-Paul and Carl Nassib who showed success over the years doing just this, and could help Allen get ready for just such a roll. In the meantime, he can provide some special teams work.
If Allen runs well and shows improved agility on the cones, then his stock is going to rise. Possibly to a place the Bucs can’t - or won’t - reach.
4TH ROUND - CB, ROCK YA-SIN (TEMPLE)
Some will make the connection of Todd Bowles (a former Temple defensive back) landing Rock Ya-Sin from Temple. But this is about much more than that.
I honestly feel like Ya-Sin will be gone before this, but I won’t look this gift horse in the mouth too much.
No, I don’t expect him to be the starter opposite of Carlton Davis III. I would still expect Jason Licht to bring in a veteran through trade (cough - Patrick Peterson - cough) or signing.
What Ya-Sin brings is the ability to play in zone when the team chooses to do so, and potential in man with a clear path to becoming a starting caliber corner in the next three years.
Perfect situation to bring in a veteran starter and allow the youngster to develop.
5TH ROUND - RB, ELIJAH HOLYFIELD (GEORGIA)
Truth be told, running back was not high on my list of target groups entering this exercise. There are guys I like, of course, but I honestly feel like the trio or Peyton Barber, Ronald Jones and Andre Ellington can get this job done.
But. If Elijah Holyfield is still there in the fifth round, I just have to take him.
I don’t know if the Buccaneers have any interest in carrying four running backs into the regular season, but man this group contest would be fun to watch. And no matter what, Tampa Bay comes out with three solid backs.
7TH ROUND - WR, MECOLE HARDMAN (GEORGIA)
I promise you I’m not some Georgia Bulldogs homer in disguise. But, Mecole Hardman brings the speed to be able to stretch any defense and he’s just getting into the meat of his potential.
Honestly, I think Hardman is probably looking forward to being challenged more than anything after spending so much time in a running back heavy program.
In both of his last two season’s with Georgia, Hardman had fewer than 40-receptions, but averaged over 15-yards per in each. He also totaled eleven touchdowns, meaning nearly 20% of his catches went for scores.
He had some relative success as a runner as well and contributes on special teams.
What more can you ask for in a final pick of your draft class?
2019 TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS DRAFT CLASS
Here it is Bucs fans. Your 2019 mock draft class. It wound up being an even split between defense and offense with a running back and wide receiver rounding out the group.
I like it, but then most people tend to agree with themselves. What do you think?
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