Round 3 Grade For GM Jason Licht

April 16th, 2022

Time to get out the red pen (too soon?) and grade the record of Super Bowl general manager Jason Licht in Round 3 of the NFL Draft.

Grading a drafting record demands deep thought, including assessing moves that were made versus the ones that weren’t.

It’s also necessary to weight a team-building move versus a need or a best-player-available move.

Then there’s the beastly elephant in the room: team record and a player’s impact.

Injuries are sticky because while a GM can shoulder the blame for injuries, he typically boasts of having an amazing medical and training staff. And that staff evaluates prospects’ health and performance to project and prevent potential injuries. So good health isn’t all luck.

As Bucs fans approach Draft No. 9 of Licht’s Tampa Bay tenure – it’s time for Joe to man up and grade him.

2014 – Charles Sims
2015 – None (used for Ali Marpet trade-up)
2016 – None (used for Roberto Aguayo trade-up)
2017 – Chris Godwin, Kendall Beckwith
2018 – Alex Cappa
2019 – Jamel Dean, Mike Edwards
2020 – Ke’Shawn Vaughn
2021 — Robert Hainsey

Round 3 is very much about expectations. The draftee should make the team and at least contribute on special teams immediately. Becoming a thriving starter is expected, though a shade more than half leaguewide soon will be forgotten or busts.

Vaughn took a significant step last season, but he’s proven to be no special teamer. Hainsey remains a mystery, but Licht’s record before them is damn impressive.

Is it fair to hang the trade-up for Aguayo on Licht here? Yeah, Aguayo was not just a second-round mess. Several Pro Bowlers (yeah, several) were drafted between Aguayo and the end of the 2016 third round.

It’s too painful for Joe to type the names. Ironically, the Saints signed undrafted rookie kicker Will Lutz, a 2019 Pro Bowler, at the close of the 2016 draft.

Sims was out of the NFL after his fourth season with injury issues. He was a force in 2015 but was no factor on special teams. Running backs Devonta Freeman and James White were taken in Round 4 after Sims.

Joe will give 2015 an “A” grade and 2016 an “F.” And grade the Sims pick a “C-.”

Licht was crushing it in 2017, 2018 and 2019. And Joe will give Licht a “C” for 2020 (there wasn’t a flood of strong players taken after Vaughn) and 2021 is incomplete.

Joe grants Licht a ”B” for his third-round work.

32 Responses to “Round 3 Grade For GM Jason Licht”

  1. Marine Buc Says:

    I give him a B. Good.

    Godwin was an awesome pick.

    Cappa, Dean and Edwards were solid picks.

    Sims never really worked out.

    Vaughn and Hainsey are still question marks…

  2. Pryda...Sec147 Says:

    Definitely getting better with his picks I’d say ! Let’s have a home run draft here Licht !

  3. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    Too bad about Beckwith.
    Freak car accident.
    Hey, Joe, any word on how he’s doing these days?

  4. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    I’m not even gonna try to guess who we’ll take.

  5. Marine Buc Says:

    I’m going to guess we draft a TE with our third round pick…

  6. DoooshLaRue Says:

    B is a fair grade.

  7. SKBucsFan Says:

    Last 4 years have been great picks. Licht just tends to be weaker in the first round on average. All the more reason to consider trading out of the first for more picks in the 2nd/3rd rounds

  8. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Although this wasn’t a draft pick, Licht used a third round pick to acquire JPP……that was a great use of a 3rd rounder……

    His third round picks were very good….2nd round, not so much.

    I’d score Licht very high on UDFAs also…….Brate at the top of that list for me.

  9. Letsbuccinggo Says:

    2014 and 2016 thumbs down 2020 and 2021 still under review overall C.

  10. Letsbuccinggo Says:

    Licht or Brady needs to tell Gronk to sh_t or get off the pot before the draft.

  11. fern Says:

    A simple as that 3rd round folks

  12. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    Tampabaybucsfan, Joe should count that as a third round pick.
    Pushes it up to B+

  13. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    No sense pissing Gronk off.

  14. Bucsfan4ever Says:

    This crop of TE’s looks kinda iffy.
    Maybe 4th round.

  15. NCbucfan Says:

    Solid A! The only real screw was the trade up for Mr Shank Aguayo! Charles Sims had over 1000 all purpose yards his rookie year. Beckwith was off to a great start to a career, but suffered the freak accident. Not Mr Lichts fault. Dean and Edwards were big in the SB! We all know Godwin was the gem here! But overall, great job in this rd Jason!! Rock that AC/DC all you want!

  16. NCbucfan Says:

    The pick for moving up for Marpet was a genius move, then getting Cappa, who just got paid from Cincy! Licht knows what he’s doing.

  17. David Says:


    That’s an awesome run for the third round. The only reason it is not in A+ is because of trading up for a kicker.

  18. unbelievable Says:

    For the 3rd round, I’d say that deserves a B+ or maybe even A-

    Trading up for agauyo was bad though. So bad. Lol.

  19. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    Licht drafted MUCH better, after Arians and his gang got here, leading me to believe they have had a lot of say into our picks.
    I hope this continues, with Arians kicked upstairs.

  20. GOB Says:

    Chris, if you think BA did, or will have a say in who’s drafted, then those roof cleaning materials probably got to you. Arians move upstairs is hush money, plain and simple. The most you can hope for from BA in his new role, is that he arrives three hours late to every meeting. Schedule his tee times for when real decisions are made, that way nobody has to listen to his nonsense.

  21. Pickgrin Says:

    JL traded a 3rd and a 4th in 2016 to move up into the late 2nd to pick Aguayo. Seems kind of unfair when judging draft picks by round that Licht gets “dinged” in all 3 of those rounds for that 1 mistake….

    Any grade less than an A for Licht’s 3rd round choices is ignoring reality.

    3rd round picks in the NFL “Bust” at a rate just above 60%.

    So like 38% of all 3rd round picks league wide “make it” in the NFL.

    Trading up for Aguayo aside – I see MAYBE 1 “bust” out of all Licht’s 3rd round picks. Sims – because he was out of the league after the conclusion of his rookie contract. But he DID play really well as a change up back to Doug Martin in 2015 – and made some good plays aside from that in his other 3 years here. Injuries were an issue towards the end…. Not really a true “bust” – but we’ll concede that one.

    Godwin – STUD – no need to elaborate

    Beckwith – played REALLY well as a rookie – then the tragic car wreck that robbed Kendall and the Bucs of his very promising NFL career… Great pick by Licht who moved up and grabbed Beckwith as the last pick in the 3rd round, Sad result that can only be chalked up to fate….

    Cappa – Solid starter at OG who just made big bank in free agency.

    Dean – Solid starter at CB. His stats are better than most realize.

    Edwards – valuable contributor with a knack for big plays. Mike would start at FS on at least 20 NFL teams.

    Vaughn – too soon to tell with such limited opportunities. BA sure talked him up end of last year. Likelihood of Vaughn being a “bust” is low IMO. He’s flashed some very good things and is likely to have some big plays for us this year.

    Hainsey – too soon. I would be surprised though if this guy is not starting at either Guard or Center for the Bucs before his rookie contract is up.

    So 8 players chosen in the 3rd round – and only ONE “bust” (even though Sims played as a Buccaneer for 4 years)

    If the league average for successful 3rd rd picks is <40% – then how does Jason Licht's 87.5% success rate in the 3rd net him anything less than an "A" grade????

  22. Adrnagy Says:

    Licht as improve every year every round. I expect a trade down or best defensive slime or olb ready to plug in this year round 1.

  23. Trey Long Says:

    Remember 50% of first round picks don’t succeed.

  24. JA Says:


    You sure seem to have a wealth of Bucs private information for a guy who I assume to have attended zero meetings with Bucs brass.
    Tell me, where do you get your info? You obviously know way more than Joe. Do you know someone on the inside?

  25. SB Says:

    Way to bring it Pickgrin! .🏈

  26. Buczilla Says:

    I’ll give Licht a B. Godwin when healthy is a top ten receiver. Cappa was mostly solid and even good towards the end of his tenure here. I gotta give Licht credit for trading up to get Ali, so that third was worth giving up. Aguayo was a bust, but Licht was doing his best to fix a horrendous kicking game and I applaud his courage. Beckwith was looking good before his accident, so that’s no negative on Licht. It’s too early to judge Vaughn or Hainsey and the rest of the guys taken are/were decent at best, but no busts. Licht’s kicking butt.

  27. Noles Says:

    2017 stands out big time, feel so bad what happened to Beckwith he looked very good

  28. Letsbuccinggo Says:

    2021 draft picks have yet to produce except Tyron a little. If these picks don’t produce this year it could be Lichts worse draft.

  29. Beejezus-belt Says:

    I think if you are grading players as being a third round pick and what you actually expect from a third round pick, I think this is one of Licht’s best rounds. Outside of the kicker fiasco, players have played to third round or higher. I think Beckwith was on going to be a very good player before the horrible injury (was it car wreck?).

  30. Destinjohnny Says:

    He got one pic….

  31. BUCman Says:

    B is a fair grade all things considered

  32. SlyPirate Says:

    A “B”. Are you kidding?

    Imagine if those were first-round picks?

    2 absolute studs. 3 starters. 3 solid rotation guys. You’d give Licht a “B”.

    That’s an A for the 3rd round.