Final Internal Factors For The Bucs’ Draft

April 19th, 2019

Joe banged on doors and has learned that yes, Vita Vea looking like he’s hit a new and impressive level of fitness is a real thing.

It’s not just a mirage seen in pictures and video shared by the team.

So a professional defensive tackle become more of a professional in his first offseason and reports looking good and nastier. That’s hardly a surprise, but, it could be a factor in the NFL Draft.

It’s easy to think that won’t matter a bit, but the reality is Bucco Bruce Arians and general manager Jason Licht continue to deeply evaluate their current roster to prepare for this draft.

Think about Licht volunteering this week (without being asked) how second-year running back Ronald Jones has highly impressed players, coaches and personnel with his work rate and confidence since reporting on April 1. It scares Joe to think that could affect the Buccaneers’ draft, but it certainly could.

It also scares Joe to remember Arians referencing at the NFL Owners Meetings that Will Gholston could put add weight and be a factor in the interior defensive line.

The point is that draft plans are sometimes tweaked based on what coaches see in April, especially on a brand new staff.

Arians and the Bucs are practicing next week in OTA sessions open to media, the first of the season. That was Arians’ call. He could have waited on that until after the draft as some coaches do, which is a tactic to get rookies more work with the veterans.

Instead, Arians wants a complete look at what he’s got before the big calls on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

37 Responses to “Final Internal Factors For The Bucs’ Draft”

  1. BucsBandit Says:

    I can’t wait to see all the exploding heads on this site, including the Joes, when the backs draft a QUARTERBACK high in the first 3 rounds.

  2. PaulW. Says:

    I’m a bit confused by the opening paragraphs about Vea. Is he getting better? If he’s not fitting in, does this confirm the likelihood of drafting a DL/NT first overall? (because our needs IMHO at LB are more pressing)

    I’d rather the Bucs aim for LB/OL/CB early and often because those are high need areas, and I’m hoping the DL is going to be okay with the starting lineup.

  3. EvolvingBucsFan Says:

    “Vita Vea looking n̶o̶t̶ like he’s hit a new and impressive level of fitness is a real thing.”

    Fixed it for you. =)

  4. AlteredEgo Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    Too bad BA only has a few OTA practices to see his players live

  5. Arian Nation Says:

    Maybe, that will be Licht’s strategy, over draft a player like Vea and put him on Jenny Craig in the off season.

    When Licht brags about Rojo without any one asking telegraphs his desperation to grab a RB early.

  6. ncbucsfan Says:

    Bandit…..we’re not drafting a QB high! If Jameis stinks again this year, we will have a high enough draft pick to select a QB high next year. If they draft a QB high they will make the front office and the Glazers complete liars and alienate the entire fan base as well as indirectly negatively impact Jameis’ performance this year. Not happening!

  7. AlteredEgo Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    DL ..1st round
    OL..2nd round
    after that go crazy Jason

  8. ManzielMadness Says:

    Let’s hope the references are just smokescreens.

  9. Cgmaster27 Says:

    Bucs bandit, I cant wait to watch your head explode when they dont.

  10. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Can Gholston play DE in a 3-4?

  11. Jean Lafitte Says:

    So if Gholston is to gain weight for DT then that makes Spence the first backup to JPP and Nassib. This doesn’t bode well for us unless Spence somehow wakes up

    Now more than ever we need to draft an DE edge rusher with our first pick

  12. martinii Says:

    After some things Iv’e read the past few days I am almost more interested in seeing VH3, Spence, Gholston, Cappa, and Jones than I am who we draft. You know you should get a top prospect at 5, but the possibility of discovering improved veterans playing in more familiar positions, coached up by a staff who knows what they are doing is really exciting.

  13. Ndog Says:

    Does anyone actually remember how bad Brooks, Sapp and Lynch looked till they got real coaching? They were HOF cailber players so coaching does matter. So to act like players like Mike Evans all the way down to Spence, Hargraves, Justin Evans, Gholdston, Vea and many many more can’t greatly improve under MUCH better coaching is ridiculous. But else should we expect from

  14. 813bucboi Says:


    DE yes…OLB no….


  15. Defense Rules Says:

    Joe, I don’t get the Will Gholston thing. Caption under his photo (#92) reads “Stepped Up”. Then your wording says “Will Gholston could put add weight and be a factor in the interior defensive line”.

    Please tell me that’s not gonna be the Bucs solution to losing GMC. And for those who are of the belief that the Bucs only need ONE DT in a 3-4 defense, you might want to re-evaluate that. For one, injuries happen, and especially in the trenches. For another, guys can’t play 100% of the defensive snaps in a game in the trenches. Oh and minor detail that Todd Bowles doesn’t use an exclusive 3-4 defense.

    After last year, I’m not a big fan of Beau Allen or Will Gholston as top dogs in the middle. We got gouged far too often through the middle last year. Last year we gave up 19 rushing TDs. Gave up 17 in 2017, then 15 in 2016 and 12 in 2015. Newsflash: that’s NOT a good progression, especially when we also gave up a whopping 34 passing TDs last year. If Bucs’ defense doesn’t solidify the middle, we could very well be looking at the same numbers this year. Or worse.

  16. Lord Cornelius Says:

    In general I don’t think we have any idea what we’re doing other than drafting defense primarily along with some O-line and maybe RB

    Most NFL teams have all already talked trade scenarios but no NFL teams know who the other teams are picking, although they all have intel on team needs/etc and interests.

    Once the draft unfolds it’s basically a domino effect of scenarios where it all comes down to the exact names called in what order. I.e. if 2 QBs go top 4 vs no QB / etc. Or if a player some team really covets falls farther than they expected.

    We have too many holes to have any obvious single need other than Defense + O-line.

    From what I have gathered though in terms of players they are interviewing and their most interest, in order or magnitude it seems to be:

    1- Defensive front 7 players that fit the new 3-4; disruptive attacking DTs/DEs & OLBs & ILBs

    2- Offensive lineman – mostly OTs which concerns me because I think the bigger need is at OG; but a lot of the OTs they’ve looked at could play OG (Jonah Williams / Dalton Risner)

    3 -Secondary players – and more S than CB. I have a feeling they would love to get a hybrid S that can play nickle / LB / etc similar to Derwin James’ role on the Chargers where only like 1/4 of his snaps were actually at S vs Mike Smith likely putting Derwin James 40 yards off the line where he’d be useless.

    4 -Running backs & speed WRs – primarily RBs with hands

    In an ideal world I think the Bucs would love to add 3 defensive players at each level of the D (DT or DE + OLB or ILB + S or CB), a new starting offensive lineman (ideally RG but maybe RT), and a RB that can either be a true 3 down player or a pass catching specialist to compliment the current room, plus some speed WR that can return kicks/possibly challenge Perriman.

    To do the above Licht will have to trade back for at least another 2 and hit on all his picks, or nail rounds 4/5/6.

    i.e. a dream draft like this:

    R1 trade back: ILB Devin White or Devin Bush
    R2: Jeffery Simmons DT/DE
    R2: Elgton Jenkins or Chris Lindstrom OG
    R3: Darnel Savage or Taylor Rapp S/CB
    R4: BPA RB – Rodney Anderson (?)
    R5: speed WR/KR

    or the same thing but swap ILB with OLB/DE like Sweat or Burns
    or the same thing but swap Simmons with a S like Abrams if he fell and in R3 should still be athletic DTs

    Plenty of ways to go about it. That’s the only good thing about having so many needs on defense lol

  17. DB55 Says:

    After watching some Todd Bowles film I think we need to draft Q Williams, Bosa/Allen and keep McIceCream.

  18. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Regardless of other needs…..we need a fast…..thumping………strong….athletic….MLB

    And we need a competent RG……

    Here is hoping one way or another we satisfy those two needs…..

  19. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Dewey Selmon Says
    “Can Gholston play DE in a 3-4?”

    Golston can’t play at all. He isn’t even good depth.

  20. NOSBOS Says:

    I think you’re wrong Bonzai. The role of a 3/4 DE is preoccupy olinemen. Will has never shown to be a capable pass rusher. Gap penetration may be just be his calling.

  21. NOSBOS Says:

    Trust me this staff sees a lot of value in Will Gholston.

  22. NOSBOS Says:

    As far as Vea looking better what you have to take in consideration is during the draft process these boys on cross country rollercoasters meeting teams doing interviews. Getting in prestine shape ain’t that easy during that time. Then an injury happens while you’re trying learn the NFL. Of course Darf Vea looking meaner this time around. I’m putting it out there now,future best 3/4 nose tackle to ever play the game.

  23. Bucsfanman Says:

    Bonzai- Thank you! I was worried that I would have to be the lone voice of reason regarding the “ghost” Gholston.
    On top of his complete lack of production, the Bucs have been paying him far more than he’s worth…ever!
    We MUST move on from these under-achieving players!

  24. Not there yet Says:

    Bruce Buckner is a B A guy it wouldn’t be surprising if the reason was not retained has something to do with Spence. No surprise he lit it up as a rookie then fizzled out that was the norm for rookies under dork and his staff. Spence clearly has edge rush ability. Maybe they are looking for the replacement for JPP and Geraldine. Josh Allen, sweat are not those guy. If Carl nassib has another good season he’ll get his contract.

    BA says if you draft an o lineman your developing him for the next staff so hope first two picks are replacement for Geraldine and JPP, guys can fit well in both fronts. At least o line has young guys and competition there

  25. Bucsfanman Says:

    NOS- Not to be argumentative but, he’s been here SIX years. He was “OK” for ONE season and has only re-appeared for the most senseless re-signing and fleecing of ALL TIME!

  26. Rod Munch Says:

    Wasn’t the entire point of Vita, the entire reason he was impressive, was because he was impressive “for his size”. If he is smaller, then what? Not all players play well at a smaller size, and I thought the point was he was 340-350lb monster that was immovable because he was so big.

  27. BucsFIRE Says:

    BucsBandit Says:
    “I can’t wait to see……. when the backs draft a QUARTERBACK”


    Who the hell are the “backs”?

  28. NOSBOS Says:

    I feel you fanman,my thoughts are there aren’t many cases outside of JJ Watt and Richard Seymour in a 3/4 schemes where the DEs are dominant. So a guy like Will might be better suited in a scheme where his assignment is primarily to occupy an Olinemen or two while defenders behind him make plays. Worth a shot considering his lack of production over the years.

  29. Christopher Schiefen Says:

    A lot of fear, Joe. Funny, just like how Dirk and Mike coached. It’s a new day, stop being scared about the talent in the building.

  30. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    Not Bandit’s fault BucsFire! His raging hatred of Jameis makes him push the buttons too hard and fast! He wanted Mariota so bad and is just praying Jameis fails.

  31. Bob Buc Says:

    Vita Vea is going to be just fine. Few D lineman come in as rookies and light it up but at the end of last season, he was starting to do just that. I’ve torn calf muscles in both legs and I have large and very attractive calf muscles (thanks so much for asking – smooch). Basically, in my case, a bacon-strip sized piece of muscle disconnected and hit the insertion point behind my knee. In each case, it bled like a mofo and pooled at my feet, later turning purple. I.Could.Not.Do.Sh*t after that so I’m guessing Vita was in the same bloody boat. I did not see anything lacking from Vita other than superhero healing powers. When he came back, he quickly ramped up to rookie-beast-mode in my view. I expect him to be a force this season. Insert “I told you so” comments here if it turns out otherwise.

  32. stpetebucsfan Says:

    @Bucsbandit Indeed that would make my head EXPLODE. It’s not just that I think JW deserves a chance with this new staff…if they did that the Buc management and Licht/BA will have told us all the biggest LIE since the famous…”I did not have sex with that woman”.

    @Martinii I’m with you bro. Yeah I’m excited by the draft but frequently teams find real gems on their own teams that have been overlooked. See Mark Barron….too bad it wasn’t us who figured him out. And your list, combined with our coaching staff of the past and the new one just taking over…I just think we’re going to get at least one if not more “Barron like” stories emerge….hopefully this time with us instead of going to another team first

  33. Pryda...Sec 147 Says:

    Yay vita Vea I hope he blows up this year that’d be nice.

  34. Rod Munch Says:

    Vita had a couple of nice games last year after getting the nickname velcro by the hacks on radio. Anywho, said it all along, despite not liking the pick, that you really can’t take much away from the rookie campaign of a d-lineman, in particular a DT. I mean Noah Spence had a fantastic rookie year compared to Vita and look how that turned out. Meanwhile Sapp had a rookie year that pretty much was nothing. Defensive lineman rarely do much in year one, you just hope they’re playing well by the end of the season, and Vita was playing well, so that’s a great sign. We’ll see what happens next, and hopefully he’s more than just a run stuffing 3-4 NT, which he profiled as, and if he is, and he’s a pro-bowler, then it was a good pick by Licht. Then again he could have got James who is already an all-pro at safety, and even got more sacks than Vita.

  35. #1bucsfan Says:

    813 makes a great point that if went for white instead of maybe Oliver then our LBs would be nutrulized because then O-Line would get to the second level an tie up our LBs. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could get both a great DT/DE an white one could dream

  36. Old Time Buc Says:

    LC you make a lot of sense, here is hoping BA has more input to help us actually get some good players

  37. Reach87 Says:

    Ndog I’m with ya. Very hard to turn it around with just the draft (got it contrarians…not impossible). Best way (IMO) is to get better players, AND a scheme that fits your strengths while mitigating your weaknesses AND coach up who you have AND make adjustments during the week and during the game. No reason many of the players on the team now can’t be made more productive with a year of experience and enhanced coaching. We CAN win this year consistently (even with most of the players we have now) if we get the process right. Draft well, but coach up who you have now too. Go Bucs!