Coaches Buzzing About YaYa Diaby

July 7th, 2023

Joe is aching for a few Bucs rookies to be hit-the-ground running successes.

Sometimes coaches just know immediately when rookies are special and keep it quiet, and sometimes they talk about the rookie and put a lot on his plate.

Joe will flash back to the 2010 NFL Draft. Receiver “mattress-in-the-yard” Mike Williams was taken in Round 4 and coaches quickly knew they had a gem. He was installed as the No. 1 receiver before training camp and was up to the task right away — 65 catches, 964 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Linebacker Kwon Alexander was in a similar boat after being picked in Round 4. The Bucs got a good look at him in the spring of 2015 and thanked the football gods. Kwon was a first-unit guy out of the gate. He impressed as a rookie and led the NFL in solo tackles the following season.

Fourth-round pick Jordan Whitehead (2018 draft) delivered ferocious hits during the 2018 preseason and found the starting lineup before Halloween.

On Thursday, Former Vikings GM Rick Spielman shared more about his June visit to One Buc Palace. He said he talked to several coaches and the player getting a lot of buzz is Bucs rookie third-round pick YaYa Diaby, the athletic edge rusher out of the University of Louisville. The Bucs are feeling he could be a handful as a pass rusher in a hurry, Spielman said.

That got Joe hot in the pants.

The Bucs need more off the edge.

Bucs edge rusher Joe Tryon-Shoyinka has proven to be below average after more than 1,500 snaps. Heck, Anthony Nelson has far more production in the same number of snaps. Bucs sacks king Shaq Barrett is coming of Achilles surgery and can’t be counted on.

Damn, if Diaby can be a real player, even matching Noah Spence’s rookie season of 2016, the Bucs should be in great shape defensively. The secondary should be excellent, but more pure pass rush versus being so blitz-reliant would let Todd Bowles get more out of the defense.

Man, this has Joe hungry for chicken.

15 Responses to “Coaches Buzzing About YaYa Diaby”

  1. stpetebucfan Says:

    If he lives up to that hype the Bucs might be in awesome shape. Kancy and Vita Vea in the middle and then hopefully just one of the several candidates…JTS…Shaq gets truly healthy…The Bucs might have found fire in a bottle up front!

  2. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    Both Logan Hall and JTS have length and speed but lack power. YaYa Diaby and Calijah Kancey lack height but has power to go with their speed. I think with this daft, Licht is hinting that power with speed is superior to height with speed.

  3. A Bucs Fan Says:

    Late bloomer in college but being 6’3 260 and running a 4.5 40 time.. he’s got the measurables to be a great pass rusher. I hope he becomes one.

  4. Drunkinybor Says:

    He intrigued me when we drafted him. Admittedly I’m not into as much as I was in my teens, 20’s and 30’s. So I checked him out on YouTube. He looks like a great prospect. You never know we might have another M.J. Stewart Carlton Davis situation. Although M.J. and Davis were both corners. M.J. was horrible Davis is very good to approaching greatness and Diaby is a DE and Kanseys a DL. I hope they both pan out but as long as one does I’ll be happy.

  5. Rod Munch Says:

    I still disagree on JTS, the kid has 8 sacks in his first two years, that’s not below average – it’s nothing special, and you’d want more out of that high of a pick, but I wouldn’t say he’s below average – yet. But, remember, he also played very little college ball and sat out a year before he was picked. He’s still a guy who is developing and learning how to play, and might yet still end up being a useful player.

    With all that said, if you hit a homerun with Yaya, then fantastic. It would be a remarkable find by Licht once again as well, and cement him getting an extension regardless of how badly Bowles blows this season.

  6. Destinjohnny Says:

    Wonderful he can beat out our best pass rushers Nelson and JTS…………

  7. garro Says:

    Don’t know much about Diaby. History tells me he will need at least a year to develop NFL pass rush skills. One productive year at Louisville does not an NFL edge rusher make. I hope I’m wrong and he can be the man. I think we have a better chance of JTS finally coming into his own this year.

    Go Bucs!

  8. FrontFour Says:

    Agree wit @ ABucsFan. Would love Diaby to keep his late bloomer rise going this season. Plus, can’t wait to hear what Gene Deckerhof comes up with for YaYa!

  9. Mike Johnson Says:

    Save us Diaby. Get yer Ya Ya out.

  10. geno711 Says:

    The story I always remember is the one when Arians and Steve Keim were in the draft room on Hard Knocks with the Arizona Cardinals.

    It was the 2nd round and they were focused on drafting a running back in the 2nd round. A guy by the name of Ameer Abdullah. They were getting super excited because they did not think that any other team was going to take him.

    Lo and behold, the Detroit Lions took Abdullah 4 picks before them. The behind the scenes showed by Keim and Arians extremely disappointed and they passed on any running backs in the 2nd round.

    Later when their pick comes up in the 3rd round, they went back into a discussion on whether they should take a running back. The discussion came around to David Johnson. A guy they knew had speed, but they weren’t sure that he could handle more than being a change of pace back. With a ton less enthusiasm, they selected David Johnson.

    As I continued to watch that Hard Knocks season, you could see Arians saying in episodes that they stole David Johnson and they did not want to over burden him with too much to start but he just kept coming on.

    Turned out the guy just hit. Sometimes, you get a little lucky as a coach and a GM.

  11. Crickett Baker Says:

    Thanks for the story, Geno. I just love those.

  12. firethecannons Says:

    He seems like a young version of JPP, huge hands and long arms, very athletic. I have more confidence in him then joe tryon or injured Shaq Barret.

  13. teacherman777 Says:

    @fire the cannons


    JPP 2.0

    JPP changed our locker room after softie GMC left.

    JPP is a Bucs legend.

    He played a huge role on our Super Bowl team.

    I hope Ya Ya will fight as hard as JPP.

    Jose Ramirez also looks like Shaq Barrett 2.0.

    Maybe we should bring JPP in for a workout.

    Suh also.

    I think we need a 10 man defensive line/OLB group.

    Vita Vea
    Logan Hall
    Shaq Barrett
    Jose Ramirez
    Ya Ya Diaby

    Anybody else like this?

  14. teacherman777 Says:

    and Nelson.

  15. Sandman45 Says:

    Markees Watts could be a huge steal even though he’s a bit undersized. Had he played in the ACC or a bigger conference and gotten more exposure he could have easily been drafted albeit the knock on his size. The bucs have a kings ransom of pass rushers right now.