The John Ross Debate

February 8th, 2017

NFL speed merchant or bust?

As Joe has stated, Joe much, much, much prefers rankings to mock drafts.

Player rankings actually take research and insight and — gasp! — work. A third grader can throw together a mock draft and a four-year old can change a mock draft on a weekly basis.

So Joe turned to John Harris of the Washington Post. He listed his top-50 draft prospects. At No. 19, Harris has wide receiver John Ross of Washington. Interestingly, the Bucs have a terrible need for a wide receiver and the Bucs just so happen to pick at No. 19 in April’s draft.

Ross was certainly the nitrous oxide booster to the potent 2016 Washington offense, helping lead the Huskies to their inaugural College Football Playoff appearance. In the Peach Bowl, though, he was held in check by a group of physical and nasty Alabama defensive backs. If there’s a concern about Ross, it’s that he can easily be disrupted by physical corners. Now, they have to first catch the speedy Ross who reminds me a great deal of Washington Redskins star DeSean Jackson.

This scares the hell out of Joe. Just because one is fast does not mean a guy can be a good receiver in the NFL. There is no question Alabama plays defense about as close to an NFL squad as there is in college football.

If Ross can get shut down by Alabama, how exactly is he going to shake free against an NFL defense?

To be fair, Ross didn’t have Mike Evans lining up as a teammate on the other side of the field.

50 Responses to “The John Ross Debate”

  1. Lunchbox Says:

    Aurrelious Benn was fast. Dexter Jackson (WR) was fast. What did they do in the NFL? Zilch. Jerry Rice, not as fast. Andre Johnson, not as fast. What did they do in the NFL? Put up consistent stats for many years. We need a speed guy, but speed ain’t everything.

  2. NJBucsFan Says:

    I see a Phillip Dorsett clone. Not worth a 1st Rd pick

  3. Joeypoppems Says:

    Honestly I dont understand the hate that some commenters on here have for John Ross. Everybody mentions his performance against Alabama, but nobody mentions he was going up against Marlon Humphrey, who John Harris has ranked 11th.

    Humphrey excels at press coverage which John Ross does struggle to beat. It was a bad matchup for Ross. Doesnt mean he will be a bad player.

    Drafting John Ross at #19 does make a lot of sense right now. It wouldnt be my favorite pick but it makes sense.

  4. Joeypoppems Says:

    Desean Jackson is a popular comp for John Ross. Imo Brandin Cooks is another reasonable comp. They are all the same mold of player.

  5. tmaxcon Says:


    If he can’t go up against a peer in Humphrey what the hell is he going to do against Seasoned NFL Cornerbacks Humphrey is hardly touted as the next Deion Sanders. If he is going to excel at the next level he has to be able to put up numbers against fellow nfl prospects which he did NOT.. it’s not hate when some do not share the same view you have of a player.

  6. Supersam Says:

    Pass. Got get OJ Howard Dirk.

  7. jwash3 Says:

    If you watched the playoff game, it wasn’t so much that Ross was ineffective. Alamaba’s Dline pressured Browning for the entire game. He was never comfortable and didnt have time to let plays develop

    What I like from Ross in that game was that he took a HUGE hit and bounced right back up. I think he needed to show scouts that toughness

  8. Joeypoppems Says:


    Again, it was 1 bad game. That doesnt define a player. And the hate comment was directed towards people who think he wont succeed because of that 1 bad game. I could care less if someone hates a player I like or like a player I hate.

    Also in an ideal world, if he does end up with the Bucs he would be used in the slot more than outside, at first anyway. And he wont be the primary focal point of our offense like he was at Washington which theoretically would give him more advantageous matchups.

  9. Mojiska Says:

    Not worth a 1. Def worth a 2.

  10. bucsfaninchina Says:

    @Supersam has the right idea. These speedy guys seem to be very risky picks, esp ones with knee issues in the past. Go DeDe Westbrooke in round 2 over Ross in rd1

  11. bucsfaninchina Says:

    And Humphrey is a goddmn stud. Big and fast and the kind of guy who can shut down quick little guys. Terrible matchup for Ross.

  12. Nole on Sat- Bucc on Sun Says:

    Curtis Samuels in the second. Look man coach K like them OU boys and we all know Jason Licht fund of them Noles. Me and Pete pretty much got the first two figured out. Y’all can have the rest of the draft.

  13. Couch Fan Says:

    So basically we should only draft a WR who has dominated every single game he’s played in? Well that narrows the list down considerably. LoL

  14. martinii Says:

    I am a little on the fence regarding this pick. I really like his speed and that seems to be a strong emphasis going into 2017. As pointed out above his bad game was against the NFL’s 33rd team. His QB was pressured and the DB’s are the best in the business. Just a few facts, we are not going to get Mike Williams, we are not going to get Corey Davis (unlesss the injury that will keep him out of combine magically disappears) and I am skeptical of OJ Howard who might go in the top 10, and had only 8 career TD’s. You can’t really say he is NFL ready. The Draft is virtually unpredictable at this point, but John Ross is on my short list at #19.

  15. d-roca Says:

    Exactly. He didnt have mike evans or jameis winston or a running game. He was more of a focal point in college, so alabama took him out of the game. I like him. If hes there id be all in

  16. ndog Says:

    Ross would be a terrible pick. It’s not just the stats against Bama but the eye test, which he failed even worse. He looked timid and lost out there then combine that with his injury history no thank you.

  17. JJBucFan Says:

    I don’t love him at 19 unless he the BPA, then grab him. I feel there will be better players though. I cannot wait, his speed is very appealing considering we have a slower big guy on the other side that can victimize pretty much any DB in the league. Speed changes our offense completely. I still think we need better protection.

  18. LakeLandBuc Says:

    We may not have to draft a WR in the 1st round, it depends on what we do in Free Agency. My picks would be. 1. DE. Taco Charlton. Michigan. 2. SS. Obi Melifonwu. Connecticut. 3. C/G.Ethan Pocic. LSU. 4. RB. Joe Mixon. Oklahoma. 5.WR. K.D.Cannon. Baylor. 6. FB. Freddie Stevenson. FSU. 7. WR. Ricky Seals-Jones. Texas A&M. This is my Mock Draft, I know it won’t go down like this.

  19. ndog Says:

    Ross is a great example of a great college football player where I won’t translate at the next level. See Dexter Jackson Appalachian State as the best comp.

  20. Lord Corn Says:

    I like that mock Lakeland – assuming we sign a WR

    I am a Taco Charlton fan and like him round 1. Every down DE that can play across Spence for years

  21. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    I have a feeling that WR they signed from the CFL is going to turn out to be stellar.

  22. Mike Evans GOAT Says:

    I was bigger than this shrimp when I was in middle school. No thanks

  23. Joeypoppems Says:

    @Mike Evans GOAT

    Lol. He is the same size as Desean Jackson, Brandin Cooks, OBJ, Antonio Brown, Tyreek Hill, and Kenny Stills. Size doesnt seem to be stopping them.

  24. captjimbo Says:

    Lakeland that would be an outstanding draft. I would prefer Solomon Thomas or Derek Barnett in the 1st but would be happy with either of the three.

  25. Tbbucs3 Says:

    Jason Licht was at the national championship I bet he got a good look at guys like Mike Williams, OJ Howard and Reuben Foster. Foster would be a great fit in our defense along side KWON, if he’s there in the first or 2d, I would strongly consider him.

  26. Big-BucsGA Says:

    I think that Ross would be a 50/50 pick. He has the one thing that we need and that is explosive speed. Kotter made it clear we need players that can catch a 5 yard out and turn it into a 30 yard gain etc. I feel that we should build in the defense in the draft. I think you take the best defensive player on the board at 19. I hope in free agency we sign Kenny Stills out of Miami to become the number 2 WR. I still would draft a speed demon if one is on the board in the 4th round.

  27. Chris Says:

    Lunchbox, Benn ran a 4.6 forty.

  28. Chris Says:

    4.57 to be exact. Which is why I could never understand the Benned around

  29. Guzzie Says:

    I’d rather get a DE instead of a WR 1st round, plenty of starting caliber WRs available later in the draft, same thing with an RB, no need to draft Cook with so many options available after the first

  30. Mike30#1bucfan Says:

    John Ross is already on the Bucs roster his name is……….Josh Huff

  31. R.O. Says:

    If he can’t play outside at one of the Flanker spots, then No Thanks at #19.

  32. R.O. Says:

    Its about Value.. Inside slot guy right now at 19 is not value.

  33. Architek Says:

    Yeah I saw the same thing and share similar concerns.

  34. Mike Evans GOAT Says:

    Lol, that has been my stance since he was first brought up months ago. It’s kinda my “Go To” thing every time I see his name brought up for us. Idk, there is just something about him that has Tavon Austin written all over it. And NO team in the league would spend a 1st round pick on Tavon Austin right now. Lol

  35. Joeypoppems Says:

    @Mike Evans GOAT

    Yea Tavon Austin definitely didn’t work out lol. Honestly if a player in this draft was going to be the next Tavon Austin, and I hate to say it because I do like him a lot, it’s Curtis Samuel.

    Ohio State use Samuel the same way Austin was used at West Virginia. As a RB/WR hybrid. I do think Samuel is a better pure receiver than Austin was tho.

  36. iamkingsu Says:

    Why does everyone keep talking about being shutdown by Alabama?? The pass rush shut Ross down and I didn’t even watch the game because it’s the same thing year after year with Alabama DBs.

    Name a shutdown DB from Alabama?? Kareem Jackson, dre Kirkpatrick, dee Milner? Etc. Landon Collins is probably the only true difference maker that played DB at Alabama. So don’t tell me an Alabama defender shut him down. If you don’t have a dual threat as your starting qb you’re going to get shutdown as a receiver because Nick Saban’s defense can’t account for the qb.

    The most electric receiver in the NFL OBJ best game against against Alabama he may have caught 4 balls. Please draft Ross and put him opposite ME 13 and thank me later.

  37. iamkingsu Says:

    I want to see him and KD cannon on the Bucs roster next year. Make it happen Licht

  38. Offbrand Says:

    Julio Jones went for a meager 8 yards on one catch against Miss. his junior season. DON’T draft Julio, he won’t perform in the NFL seeing that he cant produce against his peers. Oh yeah, he also went 4-19 V Florida, 3-41 V Miss St and 3-49 V Michigan. I’m no football genius but the logic being applied here seems questionable. Please commence with whole SEC is the greatest conference schtick.

  39. tnew Says:

    If I was drafting this type of player at 19 I would much rather gamble on Christian McCaffrey. He literally played slot, outside and tail back. Didn’t look out of place for any of them. How about a one two of Christian McCaffrey then Donta Foreman in the second. These could be the second coming of Dunn and Alstott.

    Ok.. I know I’m dreaming but aint it fun.

  40. tnew Says:

    Oh. Regarding the Alabama defense… Clemson had three receivers and the tight end go off against them.

  41. Hughe green Says:

    1. o J Howard.
    2. Joe mixon.
    Walker from CFL. # 2 receiver. # weapons for jameis

  42. MadMax Says:

    Id rather have Zay!

  43. mesh Says:

    I think Ross at 19 is a stretch and I would’t do it. I am in agreement that Curtis Samuel or Kupp in the second makes much more sense presuming we get a possession style receiver in FA (Ross won’t be there in the second). I think either player will take a year or two to develop in the NFL. It makes more sense to me to grab an Edge rusher (provided one is available – Derek Barnett would be my choice …. Taco is going to bust I think) or my real preference is to grab a OT in the first for the right side. Cam Robinson, Bolles or Ramcyzk would be my choices in that order.

  44. USFBUC Says:

    I’m still on the trade our future first and late round picks so we can pick three times in the first round. I just ran a mock and trading around and down and all over the place and landed:

    Caleb Brantley, Taco Charlton, Marlon Humphrey, Eddie Jackson, Tyus Bowser, Josh Carraway, Charles Walker, Ezra Robinson, Jarron Jones on defense.

    Then pulled Zay Jones, Tyler Orlosky, Joe Mixon, Josh Reynolds, Samaje Perine, Taywan Taylor, Dan Skipper, Jordan Leggett, and Dan Feeney on offense.

  45. Stevek Says:

    What about Forrest Lamp? Jameis needs protection, and he’d be a great compliment to Marpet. Then Pocic or Elflein or Orloskey in the second or third round. Jameis is a pocket passer. Imagine a clean interior for him to step up into.

  46. Owlykat Says:

    Josh Huff got his chance and would only be good on Special Teams running down on kicks. We already have a tough 6’3″ WR with decent hands and very fast–Shepard! Just let Huff take his ST job, and make Shepard our number two receiver. He just needs to be a full time WR and build his chemistry with Jameis along with a raise. Use the first and third pick and get Cook as our star RB and with the second pick get a DE or a big DT to stuff the run and collapse the pocket. There are a lot of good RBs, TEs, and WRs, and backup OL in this draft to pick up later and we have cap space for another Safety free agent and a proven CB. Shanahan has moved to the 49ers and Atlanta may be beatable this year so let’s build up our Bucs for a long run in the playoffs this year!

  47. delson Says:

    Josh huff should never wear a bucs jersey again he single handedly lost us 2 games on st.i want a wr that will create seperation and get yac. Ryan switzer 5’10 190 maybe 180 but this kid is absolutely the best slot wr i’ve seen in this draft class. As for number 2 wr i’d take dede westbrook in the 2nd. He’s got speed and in traffic catching ability. He wins ALOT of one on ones even with the db’s hands in his face. Oj howard in the first please might not make it to us but a guy can hope.

  48. AustinBuc Says:

    When evaluating Ross’s play in the Alabama game, remember that his QB, Browning, had an injured throwing shoulder.

  49. Poor Glennon Says:

    If we went off one game. Mariota would be our QB right now. Our chances of winning a Superbowl. Would be much greater.

  50. NFLNut Says:


    Poor Glennon,

    With the playoffs on the line in the last 4 games and defenses playing playoff type football, Mariota completed a horrendous 45.2% of his passes and threw just one TD … and he got hurt … again.

    I lived in Nashville and there are a lot of Titans fans that would much, much, much rather have Jameis than Marcus.

    You’re a hater and that’s fine, but you also come off as someone who has an incredibly low football-IQ … to each his own … ignorance is bliss I guess.