A Shaq Barrett Clone On Radar?

April 14th, 2021

Dream scenario.

Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht may just be washing his hands of half his roster.

 With the last (?) piece of the offense in place — Antonio Brown, wake the hell up! — Licht is likely wiping the dirt off his apron.

So Jenna Laine of ESPN seems to think Licht will fully address defense in the draft, at least early in the draft. And among the pass rushers that caught her eye is sort of clone of Bucs sack king Shaq Barrett. That would be Georgia pass rusher Azeez Ojulari.

Azeez Ojulari, OLB, Georgia. At 6-foot-2 and 249 pounds, Ojulari clocked a 4.62 40-yard dash time at his pro day and his arms were measured at 35 inches. He notched a three-sack performance at the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, earning Defensive MVP honors. In 10 games this year, he registered 31 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, 8.5 sacks, four forced fumbles and two passes defensed. Even better? He models his game after Barrett. He’s got an explosive first step and can drop into coverage too — he did so on 22% of plays — something defensive coordinator Todd Bowles asks his outside linebackers to do a lot of. He’s likely a first-round pick.

From what Joe has seen of this Ojulari, he can get after quarterbacks with speed or power. In other words, he is versatile.

In Dane Brugler’s “The Beast,” he has Ojulari as his top-rated pass rusher.

STRENGTHS: Excellent get-off burst, bend and stride length to consistently threaten the corner…understands pass rush geometry, setting up a speed track to out-race blockers to the pocket…has the arm length of a player three inches taller…uses well-timed, physical hands and body flexibility at the top of his rush to corner and close…his edge speed forces holding penalties…senses how blockers want to attack him and uses that against them…owns a compact frame and plays with better power than expected…uses violence to shed blockers and attack ball carriers (five forced fumbles the last two seasons)…assignment sound vs. the run with reliable backfield vision…looks comfortable dropping into space and playing on his feet…described as “humble” and “laid-back” by his teammates and the Bulldogs’ coaches praise his character and attitude (only freshman captain under Kirby Smart)…led Georgia in sacks each of the last two seasons.

SUMMARY: A two-year starter at Georgia, Ojulari lined up as the JACK linebacker in head coach Kirby Smart’s 3-3-5 base scheme, standing up and rushing with his hand on the ground. After a promising redshirt freshman campaign, he was one of the best pass rushers in the SEC in 2020, leading the conference in sacks, tackles for loss and forced fumbles. Ojulari senses how blockers want to attack him and is very skilled at using his burst/bend to attack their outside shoulder, greasing the corner and detaching from blocks with his violent hands. While he lacks elite size for the position, that shouldn’t limit his NFL ceiling if he continues to diversify his approach and develop his counters. Overall, Ojulari is an instinctive and explosive athlete with the dip-and-rip cornering skills and scheme versatility to become an impact NFL pass rusher. He projects as a younger version of Yannick Ngakoue.

Joe honestly doesn’t know how the Bucs can get this guy to freefall in the draft in order to come within reach of trading up for him, short of Ojulari getting caught using a bong mask or someone planting a fake arrest report of a seedy incident in a rural Georgia gin joint.

Hey, it worked to get Warren Sapp.

Would the Bucs actually mortgage the future for a likely backup when the team is hellbent on Going for Two? Joe could understand if the Bucs were going to trade up for someone they know will start, but for a backup?

That seems a little too rich for Joe.

25 Responses to “A Shaq Barrett Clone On Radar?”

  1. Mitch Says:

    Please! This would be the home run pick of the draft! He is the BEST pass rusher/OLB in the draft and he models his game after Shaq.

  2. Medicated Pete Says:

    I’d scamper to the podium if he’s there. The arm length and hand size is that of a 6’8″ LT.

  3. Cobraboy Says:

    Fall to #32? And without draft or other capital to move up 15-20 places?

    Not likely…

  4. SB~LV Says:

    The more I think about the draft the more I think about the draft
    The ONLY I have concluded is that there are some strange similarly sounding names which make it even more confusing

  5. Casual Observer Says:

    I think there are 4 or 5 quality edger rushers in the draft. This guy might be no.1 but the others in that top group don’t look too shabby to me. I think Licht will probably get a good one in round one. That position is the priority.

  6. gotbbucs Says:

    There would probably have to be a run on defensive backs and receivers in the middle to end of the 1st round for him to fall to #32.

  7. All lives matter Says:


  8. Hodad Says:

    With QBs, and receivers going heavy it could happen. I wouldn’t trade up for anyone in this draft, we don’t need that player. We will add a nice piece staying put at 32. No trade up, no trade down.

  9. All lives matter Says:

    🆉🅸🅿 ​ 🆃🅷🅴 ​ 🅻🅸🅿 lol

  10. #1bucsfan Says:

    Please trade up and get this guy. He can relieve jpp and Shaq when needed and not be a drop off in production. Gotta keep attacking the QB. What if jpp or Shaq goes down with a injury ? If the QB doesn’t have time to throw all game even a Lamar Jackson n mahomie can’t run away from defenders all game and still be on point. Atttack the QB and everything else falls in place

  11. David Says:

    He does seem damn good. So does the DE out of Texas and several others. I think they can get a good edge rusher in either of their first 2 picks. Especially when you consider he’s going to be a back up/rotational guy with Shaq and JPP there

  12. SB : Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:

    Walter football has him as the 6th best OLB. Projected late 2nd or early 3rd.
    No need to reach here.

  13. Lakelandsteve Says:

    I don’t think we need to trade up to get him. If he falls to us at 32 then great. If not there are still going to be some real quality football players available at that pick if we don’t trade down for extra picks. The Bucs need solid backups who can step in if there are injuries, but hopefully can learn behind these amazing starters we have. Hopefully we can pick up some draft picks who will become good special teams players and can pick up some snaps during games to learn.

  14. windbaggery Says:

    I don’t know if it’s too much to trade up… He would be part of a rotation, and JPP isn’t going to last forever. I can imagine certain packages where you had this guy on the field with D White, JPP, and Shaq — imagine the crazy blitzes you could throw at people.

  15. lambeau Says:

    Mel Kiper has him dropping t #30, so we can dream.

  16. Waterboy Says:

    The Browns just signed Clowney and were one of the teams that looked like they would take a pass rushing DL or LB! Now I think they focus their attention to a CB as Greedy Williams has not been able to stay healthy. So chances of edge rusher falling to Bucs just got much better!

  17. Mitch Says:

    Azeez is a complete football player. He is just knocked for his size.However, there is a lot to like about him. He did not allow a single coverage TD in his whole career, and last year he dropped 40 times and only allowed 4 receptions for 30 yards. He also lead the team in sacks, and had 5 forced fumbles over the past two years. The best part is his explosive first step and bend. No one else in the draft can bend around the corner like Azeez.

    Who ever drafts him will have gotten the best pass rusher of this draft class. Hands down.

  18. RuKa44 Says:

    It makes all the sense to trade up to get a better player!
    Aren’t we all in? Why should we keep our pics to get a bunch of players that will not contribute because our roster is loaded?… Better to spend those pics in moving up and getting players that can contribute, as a pass rusher to rotate with JPP and Shaq!!

  19. Darin Says:

    Never know about the draft. Ive seen better players go later than 32 and Mamulas go in the top 10. Stay tuned

  20. m0j0 Says:

    A trade up for a player the Bucs have ranked highly is a possibility.

  21. Buczilla Says:

    I’ll take good production in the best conference in the country over 0 sacks last year (Jayson Oweh) in a so-so conference. No chance we get him. Of course, I said the same thing about Brady, so wtf so I know? 😛

  22. MarkRIf Says:

    Too small to be an effective starter at DE, and he still is unlikely to be available at end of round one.

  23. Red86 Says:

    Depth is needed. People get hurt.

  24. BillyBucFan Says:

    Lol Well My God if Walter Football has him as the 6th best pass rusher, he must suck.

    I mean you now how plugged in “Walter” Football is?

    Like saying Victoria Secrets has him ranked as the best overall player in the draft.

  25. Señor Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    @SB : Your comment is awaiting moderation. Says:
    Walter football has him as the 6th best OLB. Projected late 2nd or early 3rd.
    No need to reach here

    Walter now has him going to the Bucs at #32. Interesting…