Slotting Justin Hardy

April 9th, 2015

Yes, this was a touchdown catch by Eastern Carolina WR Justin Hardy.

Do the Bucs need a slot receiver?

If so, a good ne may be lurking in the draft, says a prominent former Buccaneer.

Ex-Tampa Bay tight end Anthony Becht is not just a voice on the Buccaneers Radio Network, he calls games for ESPN. Speaking this morning on WDAE-AM 620, Becht said he called three Eastern Carolina games and can vouch for the “tremendous hands” of wide receiver Justin Hardy, who Becht labeled a “pure, top-notch character guy.”

Becht also acknowledged that the Bucs are still looking for a solid slot receiver. Apparently, he doesn’t have high hopes for second-year man Robert Herron, last year’s sixth-round pick.

Hardy is an interesting cat. He’s got punt return experience, and he caught a whopping 387 passes in college. That’s no typo; it’s an NCAA record.

Projected as a third-round pick, Hardy might help Tampa Bay, but he wouldn’t do much if the Bucs can’t protect the quarterback. So Joe would much prefer the Bucs load up on hogs.

You can hear all of Becht’s draft takes (specifically wide receiver) via the player below.

25 Responses to “Slotting Justin Hardy”

  1. UF Alum that likes a few Noles here. Says:

    If Lovie drafts a Slot in the third, then lovie should be tied up and beaten with hoses.

  2. WalkdaPlank Says:

    My vote would go to Chris Conley in the mid rounds. Dude is a monster athlete with hands, probably might even fall to the late 3rd or 4th because he wasn’t targeted much.

    Then again, we have Murphy and need O-line.

  3. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    I think we all would prefer to get offensive line help as the #1 priority after drafting a QB. However, I am strongly against reaching for one. If we are in the third round and there is no one available that is a good pick on the line, the worst thing you can do is draft him. We don’t need offensive linemen, we need good offensive linemen. There’s no point in gathering crap.

  4. The Buc Realist Says:

    There are so many needs all over the place. Grab BPA and if that is a receiver than grab one. Its not like Lovie is taking this team to the playoffs!

  5. Buctebow Says:

    Go ahead Bucs, draft whoever you want and ignore the teams weaknesses, I dare you. Well, they do whatever they want every year and it never makes any sense to me, but hey, with their track record of excellent choices, who am I to complain, I mean, look how many of the Bucs own draft picks are still on the team? I swear, you could put the lists of Mayock’s top 10’s on the wall and throw a dart blindfolded and do better than the Bucs (even if you didn’t hit the wall with the dart).

  6. admin Says:

    Go ahead Bucs, draft whoever you want and ignore the teams weaknesses, I dare you.

    You have to be hitting the bourbon if you think, currently, quarterback for the Bucs is a strength.

  7. LargoBuc Says:

    Draft Tre Mcbride out of Will and Mary. He has very good hands and is an explosive return man. His weakness is getting seperation on go routes against above average corners, but he would be a good challenge against Louis Murphy for that third receiver spot. His hands and return abilities make him more reliable than the speedy Robert Herron. The Bucs would be wise to draft this kid in the fourth or fifth. Look up his draft profile. Very impressive.

  8. Buctebow Says:

    admin, where did I state that quarterback was a strength? My point is that I question their ability to evaluate talent and pick players that make the team and some of the positions they draft seemingly come from left field as relates to team needs.

  9. JMan Says:

    Tyler Lockett or Kenny Bell

  10. Pickgrin Says:

    OLine is a much higher priority. If the Bucs are going to take a slot reciever that high – it should be Rashad Greene in the 3rd round (who also returns punts and has almost 4000 yards receiving at FSU).

  11. Architek Says:

    One QB – rest OL and DL and a KR/PR or maybe a safety that can cover.

  12. DallasBuc Says:

    Tremendous hands in the slot? According to our very own lapdog GM we have that in the great Robert Herron!

  13. tmaxcon Says:

    Oline is higher need but if you’re going to use a 3rd gotta grab Lockett. Good slot guy, great gunner on special teams and good kick returner.

  14. Patrick in VA Says:

    @ joe – had there been any indications of the Bucs staff’s reaction after the Winston workout today?

  15. cnvertbleweathr Says:

    No speed to his game. Not my preferred pick for the slot, but the Bucs could do a lot worse.

  16. Skyline Crew Says:

    He has character. No need for him here in Tampa. We need nasty players not some angel. NEXT!

  17. Tom Edrington Says:

    As an ECU alum, loved Justin Hardy, great hands, nice player, that being said, he’s not gonna outrun anyone at the next level….

  18. Pirate fan Says:

    It’s East Carolina, not Eastern Carolina

  19. Matt Says:

    The good thing about Justin Hardy is he’s already got pirate blood in him. The bad part is I don’t trust him enough with a 3rd rd selection . If we want a 3rd rd slot WR than Tyler Lockett will be the man .
    1 Dante fowler
    2. Aj Cann
    3. Tyler Lockett

    3 instant starters fills 3 big time holes

  20. Matt Says:

    Not that I don’t like Winston or Mariota , but both of them both carry lot of haters from around the world and I don’t want someone that everyone’s gonna hate . I hate it . Let it go already move on . Dante fowler is the final piece of the d line and would serve the team very well at LE .
    That’s gonna be a great front 4

  21. Dave Says:


    “1 Dante fowler
    2. Aj Cann
    3. Tyler Lockett ”

    Stop with this nonsense. Anyone with half a brain knows they are taking Winston.
    Every GM in the NFL looks at the kid and talks about him and his ability like they talked about Manning and Luck coming out of college.

    They would be absolute idiots to not take Winston at QB and then take a bunch of OL and a DE

    You people on here claiming the drafts have made no sense lately….really?? Why? They have gone after DE’s because they need them. It hasn’t worked out. They went after DTs because they needed them, GMC worked out, the rest didn’t.
    They had some decent OL over the last several years but they got over priced for their production.
    They have failed at drafting DBs for the most part though.

    My point is most of you love most picks and then play hindsight critic.

    I don’t. I do not claim to know what player is going to pan out and what player won’t. I don’t know. No one does. It is a crap shoot.

    The only I do know is the BUCS need a QB since…. Doug Williams and Winston has pocket presence and accuracy and reads defenses and progresses through reads… He is an NFL QB says every single GM.

    If they DON’T draft him, the team should be sold

  22. tha truth is... Says:

    He reminds me of Brian Hartline

  23. nucifyouBUC Says:

    If he somehow drops to the top of the 2nd round, or close enough for us to move up a bit and grab him, Perriman is gonna be a beast…

    Book It

  24. Tim Says:

    As an East Carolina alumni, I have seen Justin Hardy play for many years. He reminds me of Steve Smith. I would love to have that guy play on the Bucs and be a thorn in the panthers side for many years to come.
    Justin continually dominated games. He holds the NCAA record for most catches in a college career.
    Draft him if he is available in the third round.

  25. Ryan Says:

    Mark my words, Justin Hardy will be, worst case scenario, a 7-8 year starter in the NFL. Superstar potential. Only reason people are sleeping on this guy is because his measurables aren’t pretty. He has legit game speed though and is afraid of nothing. If we get an extra 3rd through trading down in the 2nd or auctioning off glennon, he has to be our pick. Slot receiver this year, and then our outside receiver opposite Evans once Vjax hangs em up.