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Buccaneers first-round pick Joe Tryon talks versatility, expectations as rookie camp opens

The No. 32 overall pick in last month’s draft has arrived in Tampa for rookie mini-camp and is already focusing on providing the Bucs with exactly what they need.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: OCT 05 Washington at Stanford

The Buccaneers welcomed their 2021 rookie class to the AdventHealth Training Center on Thursday ahead of this weekend’s rookie mini-camp. And on Friday, some of the team’s top draft picks spoke with the local media.

Among those to speak before Friday afternoon’s workout was first-round pick Joe Tryon, who was asked about his early meetings with Bucs coaches, his role in Tampa Bay’s defense and what it’s like to be taking his first step into his new NFL journey.

Tryon, a former University of Washington standout, said Friday that his first conversations with his new coaches have been about working on his versatility, something he already has a jump start on thanks to his time with the Huskies (h/t Carmen Vitali of

Considering Tampa Bay has brought back its entire starting defense from a Super Bowl-winning team, any draft selection made on that side of the ball was always going to come in and provide depth early on in his career. Tryon, an edge rusher, gets to back up two great veterans in Shaquil Barrett and Jason Pierre-Paul, but it now sounds like he’s also going to be used on the defensive line as a hand-in-the-dirt lineman. He proved to be pretty versatile at Washington, which is a good sign for his transition into the NFL—and into Todd Bowles’ defense. Not to mention, the more positions he can play, the more chances he’ll have to get on the field as a rookie in 2021.

Speaking of playing time as a rookie, Tryon acknowledged that he knows what his role is going to be for the Bucs, but that’s not stopping him from preparing like a starter. That attitude is surely one that coaches will be thrilled about, and it’s going to serve him well if—and when—his number is called this fall.

Beyond all of the questions about his role and getting acclimated to being an NFL rookie, Tryon said he was just happy to be around football again. Because, while plenty of Bucs rookies are coming to the facility and participating in football activities for the first time in a few months, the 6-foot-5, 262-pound rookie is back around a team for the first time since 2019 after opting out of the 2020 season at Washington due to concerns about COVID-19.

(Once again, h/t to’s Carmen Vitali):

Tryon and his fellow rookies will get their first taste of the NFL this weekend at mini-camp before things really get going later in the summer. And now more than ever, becoming Buccaneers means there are expectations to live up to. Tryon appears well aware of that fact, and he is already setting the tone for himself and others this weekend (h/t Scott Smith of