Grade: A+

May 11th, 2021

Bucs GM Jason Licht

Joe’s not done with draft grades!

But this one is a bit different. This time, no less an authority than prickly Pete Prisco of CBS Sports decided to look back to the 2018 draft to see how things turned out now that those players have three seasons under their belts.

Initially, Prisco liked the 2018 draft by Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht. Three years removed, Prisco likes it even more.

In reassessing the 2018 Bucs draft, Prisco gives Licht an A+.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
2018 Grade:

The Skinny: They had eight picks in the draft and four will be definite starters in 2021. They are first-round defensive tackle Vita Vea, second-round corner Carlton Davis, third-round guard Alex Cappa and fourth-round safety Jordan Whitehead. Second-round running back Ronald Jones is a rotational player in their scheme who has started games and could again this season. They missed on second-round corner M.J. Stewart, who is now in Cleveland.

How I did: I wrote that they needed defensive players and landed a bunch of them by trading down. I liked the picks of Vea and Davis a lot, but also said Jones would be a star running back in the future, which hasn’t happened.

New Grade: A+

Prisco types that the Bucs got four starters out of that draft. In reality, the Bucs got six.

Remember that just a few weeks before the draft, Licht fully took advantage of Giants shot-caller Dave Gettleman’s sudden lapse of reason and traded away a third-round pick in the 2018 draft for Jason Pierre-Paul.

That was a robbery of the highest order at the time. In retrospect, Gettleman helped hand over a Vince Lombardi Trophy. JPP is one of and arguably the best defensive player on the Bucs not named “Lavonte David.”

That’s no knock on anyone. JPP is just that good when you factor in talent, work ethic and on-field coaching.

As Joe wrote previously, the 2018 draft may be Licht’s masterpiece.

23 Responses to “Grade: A+”

  1. Medicated Pete Says:

    I was haunted by wonderful thoughts when we got Vita Vea

  2. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Even throwing away the MJ Stewart pick…….Vea & Davis with essentially the first pick is awesome.

  3. SlyPirate Says:

    Interesting debate … Who has been the better pass rusher FA?
    A. Simeon Rice
    B. JPP

  4. 40Forever Says:

    Simeon had less help on the other side than Jpp has.

  5. Medicated Pete Says:

    Simeon Rice

  6. Waterboy Says:

    While JPP is a very nice player, Simeon Rice should be in the HOF. Rice was an incredible pass rusher who when healthy, got 10-15 sacks a year!

  7. Bird Says:

    First leak of schedule

    Bills 12/12 home

    So saints or cowboys opening game ?

  8. JimmyJack Says:

    2018- A-double plus
    2019- A-triple plus
    2020- A triple plus
    2021- A triple plus plus

    Ya gotta give at least a extra plus just for drafting a Gator QB. Thats only fair.

  9. JimmyJack Says:

    SlyI might lean Simeon right now. But that could very well change to JPP by this time next year.

    And Im fairly certain that JPP has quite a few years left in him(especially if a guy like Tryon works out). Im equally as certain theres no way the Bucs let JPP walk out the door.

  10. Bird Says:


    That is a good debate. Jpp would have all around game play w tackles and sacks for slight edge ? Maybe. But simeon for edge for sacks. More double digits. Simeon got his tackles too though

    But jpp had the 16.5 sack season to rice 15.5

  11. Alvin Scissors Harper Says:

    I would concur – Rice over JPP. Loved Simeon’s personality, as he’s really out there!

  12. Youngbucs Says:

    Rice should be in the hof smh!!!!

  13. geno711 Says:

    I am ok with the Rice over JPP posters but I would give run downs to JPP over Simeon. Simeon a better pass rusher.

    A 3rd rounder for JPP was just crazy good for us though as Joe said.

  14. FirstTimePoster Says:

    So sick of draft grades. Injuries, car crashes, pi$$ed off ex-girlfriends, stripper poles in the front yard, Michael Jackson photoshoots, punching a cabbie in the back of the head, masturbating in an open locker room (allegedly).

    Draft grades mean ZERO! Put it on the field or STFU! Sorry, I’m in a mood.

  15. Marine Buc Says:

    “Hand over the trophy”


    I saw what you did their Joe…

  16. FirstTimePoster Says:

    My response was deleted by the Joes! I’m honored. Not even mad.

  17. Anonymous Says:

    I won’t even call MJ Stewart a bust. He’s a guy who will play in the league for at least another few years. Yes, he didn’t turn into a star, but he’s still a useful NFL player on a team with a very good defense. If that’s your worst pick in a draft that netted you 4-6 starters on a Super Bowl team, you live with that all day long.

    Getting those guys along with JPP could possibly go down as one of the greatest drafts in NFL history!!!

  18. Redblud Says:

    I would even call Stewart a bust. No he didn’t turn into a star, but he is still a useful player on a team that has a very good defense. He’ll probably be around for at least another few seasons at worse. Knowing the draft odds, if that’s your worse pick in a draft that ended up netting you 4-6 starters on a Super Bowl team, then that could possibly go down as one of the greatest team drafts in NFL history.

  19. BillyBucoff Says:

    We are gonna play the cowboys 1st game
    NE is playing the Bills 1st Monday night

  20. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    Colt Brennan 1983-2021

    Rest Up Bredren

  21. SOEbuc Says:


  22. Buczilla Says:

    Vita is one of my favorite players, but he has proven to be injury prone. Stewart was a massive bust and Rojo is serviceable at best. If we are counting the JPP trade then it’s still an A for me. JPP is freaking awesome.

  23. carzyBucs_CL Says:

    Simeon Rice “.. with the sack..” by Gene Deckerhoff. No doubt.✔