Edge Fever In The Mock Drafts

March 22nd, 2024

Shoved aside?

One of Joe’s favorite stats to come out of the 2023 NFL Draft is about edge rusher production.

The six edge rushers selected in Round 1 combined for only 21 sacks last season.


That makes the Bucs’ pick of YaYa Diaby (7 1/2 sacks) in Round 3 last year that much more genius. Man, Joe is fired up to watch Diaby in a starting role from Day 1 this season.

The success of the 2022 draft class of edge rushers has Joe drooling, wondering if Diaby can take a big leap like top edge rushers from the ’22 class did. Talented pass rushers often struggle as rookies but explode in Year 2.

Travon Walker, the No. 1 overall pick in 2022, had a very rough rookie year but broke out for double-digit sacks with the Jaguars last season. The No. 5 overall pick in 2022, Kayvon Thibodeaux, looked a little lost as a rookie edge rusher before becoming a fan favorite with the Giants last year (11 1/2 sacks, 3 forced fumbles.) The Packers snagged Quay Walker at No. 22 overall in 2022, and he’s been ugly with four sacks in 30 starts. But four picks later, the Jets snagged Florida State edge rusher Jermaine Johnson and he morphed into a Pro Bowl force last season after a rough rookie year.

Yes, there’s still a hearty chunk of rushers like Walker that go the bust route. Joe Tyron-Shoyinka has company. There are no sure things in the draft.

NFL Network draft guru Daniel Jeremiah, the former Eagles and Ravens scout, sees the Bucs drafting an edge rusher in Round 1 with their No. 26 overall pick next month. His mock draft this week has Tampa Bay taking Missouri sack machine Darius Robinson.

Robinson had 14 sacks last season for Tigers in the SEC. Joe is lukewarm on the guy. He can develop, but at 6-5, 285 pounds, he’s giving Logan Hall vibes. And those don’t excite Joe.

Joe doesn’t care where the Bucs draft an edge rusher, but they need to — and find themselves a veteran, too.

63 Responses to “Edge Fever In The Mock Drafts”

  1. BridleOaksBuc Says:

    Watched this guy in NFL network’s Senior Bowl coverage…He was quick as hell….OL guys couldn’t handle his get off and bend…I was impressed

  2. BucFanDMV Says:

    I hope we can get it right with the end position in the draft. I was just talking with another Buc fan the other day and neither of us could name a DE that we drafted outside of Selmon that has actually been really good. From Eric Curry to other busts, can someone honestly think of one. We both said Chidi, but he wasn’t a Simeon Rice etc (who we didn’t draft)

  3. WilieG Says:

    As a long suffering Bucs fan, I hate getting excited about any edge rusher because so many have absolutely sucked here. For every Selmon, Rice, or JPP, there are a dozen failures.

  4. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Does anyone think we need an edge rusher?

  5. StickinUp4Centers Says:

    I believe Quay Walker is more of an ILB than an EDGE. Jermaine Johnson had a whopping 2.5 more sacks than JTS.

  6. SB~LV Says:

    Plenty of edge rushers to be found in the back half of the draft
    Running and ducking 😜

  7. Lt. Dan Says:

    I gotta believe that Ya Ya and Kancey will go off this coming year. No steady diet of whatever college kids eat these days, a whole year in an NFL weight room, film study, better coaching etc. As Bart Scott famously said, “Can’t wait!”

  8. Capt.Tim Says:

    We need to aquire a Vet pass rusher, then draft a pass rushing LB and DE in the first 4 picks
    We have our QB. We have our Left tackle. A great pass rusher is the next key personnel we need to add. We need a couple pass rushers and need to jettison the dead weight and Center wrecking useless linemen that are just taking up space.
    That would be the useless and clueless JTS and Logan Hall.

  9. BillyBucco Says:

    Darius can play edge to start but he gives off Logan Hall vibes because he projects to play Defensive Tackle eventually. I think this will be the pick if they don’t trade back. He will be a much better force inside than Hall and allow even JTS to have better stats outside. The push up the middle is the most important. Next to Vea and a faster more improved Kancey it could cause serious problems.

  10. Capt.Tim Says:

    I think you are right about YaYa and Kancey. I really do. But we are both hopeful. Really wanna see the Bucs add a proven commodity

  11. Boss Says:

    no help coming……toilet bowl needs a built in excuse.

    he killed it this year when you all called for him signing “the situation” and drop it like it’s hot.

    he gave your wish in return for his built in excuse because of no $$$

    congrats, enjoy the show!

  12. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    Darius Robinson could be everything JTS & Hall are not.

    DR reminds me of a Cam Jordan type prospect with more production

    Since ’76

  13. stpetebucfan Says:

    Of course I’m a gang leader for #optimistic but I think TL has absolutely nailed this off season! I have no reason to suspect he won’t close the deal before camp opens in July!

    He either succeed in the draft, find an FA, or perhaps even pull off some weird trade…I just believe Todd will git er done.

    No team has great players at all positions. After the # of great players the next most important is the ability of the supporting cast. QB is not great but good enough with a big enough heart to lead a “good enough” team. HOF on offense at 2 spots…LT and WR…CG14 is Pro Bowl…White is great out of the backfield…
    Get another power RB to complement White and the Bucs are good to on O even without a “great” QB.

    On D…Winfield..perhaps best at his position..Whitehead..another great safety…
    Decent CB’s…LB especially edge rusher some ? but if YaYa grows and Calijah blossoms the Bucs will get their share of QB pressures.

    I can’t wait for July!

  14. Joe in Michigan Says:

    I wouldn’t mind a couple of years of Khalil Mack and an Edge in the 2nd Round. Do I think the Bucs will get Mack? No.

  15. SlyPirate Says:

    Darius Robinson slow and easily blocked. Meh.

    Laiatu Latu is where it’s at.

  16. MadMax Says:

    Chris Braswell with our 2nd if still there….

    alright, rush and LB keep being forced on me


  17. SB~LV Says:

    It took #99 until his 3rd year to figure out his NFL game… just saying

  18. K2 Says:

    We won’t get Turner
    So, far I like:
    Jared Verse
    Lantau Latu
    Chris Braswell
    Marshawn Kneeland

    Not sure about:
    Chop Robinson
    Darius Robison
    Adisa Isaac
    Jonah Ellis

  19. Your Mama Says:

    Maybe JTS will blow up after his rookie year. Oh, wait……..

  20. Tony marks Says:

    This is why if the stellar player available is center at 26 you draft him – No fake rules about impact players ( the line has huge impact) – instead of going by position. IF the rusher isn’t going to often get to the Qb or hurry throws then theres no point and at 26 thees a highly likelihood the ones who do are gone..

    Like Cap said we need a veteran. Then in my book Licht can go for a project in later rounds and strike gold that will take a year to develop. Expecting a rookie to make huge impact this year is day dreaming

  21. doolnutts Says:

    SlyPirate – I do a PFF mock draft daily, Laiatu Latu doesnt hasnt been falling lately. I think Robinson is a possibility if we get unlucky and ED rushers we want don’t fall to us. We may not be picking someone we all want because I fear they will all be gone so well just take best availail.e

  22. Defense Rules Says:

    Joe … ‘Missouri sack machine Darius Robinson … had 14 sacks last season for Tigers in the SEC. Joe is lukewarm on the guy. He can develop, but at 6-5, 285 pounds, he’s giving Logan Hall vibes. And those don’t excite Joe.’

    I’d love to see us draft him, but he won’t be there when we pick. Here’s what Walter Football said about Robinson …

    ‘Darius Robinson, 3-4DE, Missouri
    Height: 6-5. Weight: 286.
    40 Time: 4.95.
    Projected Round (2024): 1-2.
    3/16/24: Robinson was a really solid football player for the Tigers in 2023, recording 43 tackles, 8.5 sacks and a forced fumble. With good height, length and weight, Robinson offers the flexibility to play defensive end or tackle at the pro level. He could be a base end who moves inside to tackle in the sub package. Robinson had a superb week of practice at the Senior Bowl, showing some serious power to shed blocks. He is big, strong, and a good power rusher who also is tough against the run. However, team sources feel Robinson lacks some speed and juice off the edge.

    Good college stats in a tough conference. Sounds like he’ll get more inside time than outside time, and I’m OK with that (we need both in our defense). I see him as an improvement over Logan Hall (who won’t be re-signed I’d bet when his time comes).

  23. Bucben61 Says:

    Tony marks…spot on assessment…but who is that veteran

  24. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Defense Rules: Isn’t Darius Robinson a “tweener”? The Bucs need an Edge, IMHO, not another Logan Hall-type.

  25. Scott Says:

    We met with a lot of edge guys at the combine. They are definitely in play round one.

  26. Steven007 Says:

    DR and Joe in MI, I’ve heard Robinson compared to Cam Jordan on more than one occasion by the pundits. As DR mentioned, I see him as an improvement out the gate over Logan Hall. But as always, it’s hard to determine how the draft will fall to us unless JL make some kind of move for a player they are in love with.

  27. Joe in Michigan Says:

    It doesn’t say anything about “bend” with Darius Robinson. That’s what the Bucs need, a guy who can bend around the edge.

  28. Steven007 Says:

    I agree with bend, but in a 3/ 4 which we run a lot, that’s most often going to come from the outside linebacker position. Of course If that’s available. I’m guessing that’s where they will look. But so far only Chop Robinson seems like he would be a possibility where we pick. And though Uber athletic, he would be a gamble on greatness due to his lack of college production. But as I’ve mentioned before, Danielle Hunter had the same production coming out of college but blew up in the pros.

  29. It's Corn Says:

    I really want them to get a quality edge rusher, but it also occurs to me that they managed to get to the divisional round of the playoffs with the lack of talent at that position (besides Diaby). So, in a sense, at least they probably won’t have a WORSE pass rush than last year from the linemen.

  30. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    @Joe in Michigan

    Guess you’re missing the point that Darius would play edge on 1st/ 2nd downs/ run plays & then move inside on 3rd down/ pass plays.

    DR would still get his share of sacks as teams do pass on 1 & 2nd down.

    On passing downs, you have that quickness off the edge you allude to with JTS & Watts

    Since ’76

  31. NYbucsfan Says:

    I’m not sure how many picks I would waste on defense. Just looking back at Todd’s tenure with the Bucs, he really is not a great developer of talent. We’ve had some rookies who have come in and made an impact immediately and I would chalk that up to good drafting but players who have actually improved under his command are limited at best.

  32. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    Not a huge Chop fan

    Since ’76

  33. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    DR would be a day 1 starter outside and Todd likes versatility.

    DR could make Hall expendable next year.

    You still have JTS & Watts for passing downs this season.

    If JTS still can’t get it done, replace him next year

    Darius Robinson from draftbuzz:

    Robinson’s transition from the interior to the edge has highlighted his adaptability and physicality, making him a fit for NFL defenses that value flexibility. His power at the point of attack and ability to engage and shed blockers are immediate assets. However, to maximize his impact in the NFL, he’ll need to refine his pass-rush technique and develop a more diverse set of moves to complement his bull rush. His lower-half flexibility and quickness are areas for improvement, which could limit his effectiveness against more agile tackles and in space.

    Teams looking for a defensive lineman who can contribute immediately against the run, with the potential to grow into a more complete pass-rusher, will find Robinson a compelling option. His physical attributes and production speak to a high ceiling, especially if he can expand his skill set and adapt to the faster pace of the NFL. Robinson’s story of progression and performance at Missouri sets him up as a player with the tools to succeed at the next level, particularly in schemes that can utilize his versatility and raw power.”

    Since ’76

  34. teacherman777 Says:

    You want to win the South?

    Sign Clowney. 10 million plus 1 million per sack.

    He’ll get us 10 sacks. Guaranteed.

    And he’s a beast at OLB. He’s huge!

  35. Hearty Dikerson Says:

    The difference between Darius Robinson and Logan Hall is that DR is playing at his natural weight. The Bucs had Hall pile on 25 lbs, which has dramatically slowed him down. I think that was a mistake. I’d tell Hall to slim back down to his natural weight and try him as an OLB – nothing to lose with him at this point.

  36. Rod Munch Says:

    I don’t pay any attention to college so I don’t know what is what outside of reading various scouting reports, etc — but I do know the hit rate on edge rushers, late in the 1st round, is well under 50/50, and they rarely help you in their rookie year.

    If the idea is to try to compete this year, I’d think the Bucs would be better off to get someone who can make an impact this year, and to me that would be a 3rd WR, as the Bucs have zero depth at the position, and Godwin’s deal is up after the year in any case. You can draft a WR here and they can contribute right away.

    Obviously, however, it depends on the board.

    But I personally wouldn’t be reaching for an edge rusher, but if someone falls, then that’s a different story — however edge rushers rarely fall.

  37. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    The Bucs could trade back, get an extra pick & DR might still be there.

    He was a 2nd round prospect but has moved up, especially after the senior bowl

    Consider this tho-

    With as many QBs, OTs & WRs going in the 1st round, you’d have to think there will be a better choice than DR that gets pushed down to 26

    Since ’76

  38. Buckeyebuckchuck Says:

    Totally agree on the Hall comp with Darius. A little small for the interior, not bendy enough for edge. A Tweener, just like Hall. Not to say it was a wasted pick they just drafted him a little too high; he’s bulking up and will be pretty decent in the interior

  39. Jeremy Goins Says:

    You guys are acting like we don’t need a center and guards on o-line. That is just as big of a need if not a bigger 1. I freaking love defense both our Superbowl teams had outstanding defenses but we were defense heavy in last year’s draft. We need to focus on offense. O line, tight end, maybe a good running back who sees the hole and goes after it. If I hand off to anybody as much as we did last year then you are bound to be close to 1,000 yards. Go BUCS!!!!!

  40. #99 the big fella Says:

    Hall couldn’t carry this kids jockstrap

  41. Biff Barker Says:

    Hall and JTS both suck. They take up roster space.

    Jason, good GM’s cut or trade their mistakes.

  42. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    Jeremy Goins, depending on how thing fall in this draft, there should be both Gs & Cs that can start right away in rounds 2 & 3

    Since ’76

  43. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    #99 the big fella Says:
    March 22nd, 2024 at 2:12 pm
    Hall couldn’t carry this kids jockstrap

    Very true

    Since ’76

  44. Another J Says:

    I always believed every successful team has at least four good pass rushers at all times. Make the other team pay no matter who you rotate into the game.
    The 49ers, Eagles, Chargers, Ravens, and Cowboys are good examples of teams that are stacked up front.
    The Bucs will be there soon.

  45. Esteban85 Says:

    What makes YaYa so dynamic is his speed to power off the edge. Seems like this guy has the power but lacks that speed to chase down a Hurts or a Young off the edge. Looking at the players that will be available I would say chop is a decent football player with explosive jump off the line and a ton of speed off the edge. The kid needs work on his hands but Chop has the edge speed we need. I know a lot of people don’t like his production at Penn State but on film the guy shows some flash.

  46. Gipper Says:

    Laiatu Latu (UCLA) is the only EDGE worth drafting. He is another TJ Watt. If Bucs are serious about improving defense, Latu is the guy.

  47. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    JTS has speed off the edge too, doesn’t help him.

    You’d like to see Chop have more production, seems like he’s high bust potential.

    Time will tell

    Since ’76

  48. IE Buc Says:

    We need to trade JTS to get another draft pick and get more help.

  49. HC Grover Says:

    Oh No! Not Plan 9. My favorite player.

  50. Capt.Tim Says:

    The day we drafted Logan Hall, I posted here that he was a tweener, and would be a bust. Its in the Archives.
    I said JTS would flop. Again, in the archives.
    Darius Robinson wont flop. Hes not a skinny tackle, like Haa.
    Robinson has DE speed at that weight- he will be a good, meybe great, NFL DE.

    Hall didnt have DE skills. He was too slow for that. He was a 286 DT. Nope.
    Hardy dickersomn- they played him at 286. Too weak, too slow. He sucked.
    After watching that sit show for two years- they tried muscling him up.
    Added 25 pounds. Apparently all lead. Most to his head. He was even SLOWER, And the muscle did no good.
    Logan hall was to slow fow DE, too weak for DT

    Darius Robinson is fast and strong at 285, he has the speed to play DE. Something Hall only dreams of.

    Id be real happy if we drafted Darius. Id be real happy if we cut Hall and JTS

  51. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    Think they’re going to give JTS another year

    Since ’76

  52. Admiral Redbeard Says:

    Wow, after all these years, the Joe’s still don’t know the difference between a 3-4 OLB/edge rusher (JTS, Shaq, JPP) and a defensive end (Logan Hall, Darius Robinson, Will Gholston). Just wow. Yes, I know, JPP played D-end for the Giants. But that was in a 4-3 defense (which, honestly, D. Robinson is better suited for). Please, at least TRY to know the difference.

  53. Defense Rules Says:

    Admiral … Some players (like JPP) are so good that they can play in a 4-3 or a 3-4. Most can’t though I admit. Hall & JTS were both ‘overdrafted’ by at least 1 round if not more. I suspect that both of them would fit better in a 4-3, but it’s hard to tell because neither one of them has shown a true ‘killer instinct’ (where’s Ndamukong Suh when you need him?).

    Take away Vea, and the Bucs have one of the lighter DLines in the conference (he brings the ‘average’ up considerably). Can make up for that with speed & quickness (like Kancey does), but neither Hall nor JTS are all that fast or quick. Still can’t see either of them getting a 2nd contract with us.

    When Todd Bowles hired George Edwards last season, I had a feeling that we’d see more 4-man fronts (Edwards experience was almost totally in 4-3 defenses and he’s VERY GOOD IMO). I’m not sure if that was the case last season, but our run defense did improve considerably (from #15 in 2022 to #5 in 2023). We still got our (roughly) 3 sacks/game average, but our pressures were waaay down & QBs took us to the cleaners quite often. The Bucs defense allowed opposing QBs to complete 66.62% of their passes in 2023 (ranked #25), 64.51% in 2022 (ranked #17), 65.18% in 2021 (ranked #15) and 66.96% in 2020 (ranked #22). Just a guess, but there’s probably a pretty good correlation between fewer QB pressures and our pass defense allowing a higher QB completion percentage in 2023.

  54. Capt.Tim Says:

    Oh yeah. JTS and Hall aernt going anywhere. No way they cut 1st picks this quick. They think it would make our front office look bad.
    It wouldnt to me, or most fans. We understand its a crap shoot, with a million variables. Who knows what handing a 20 year old kid a million dollars is gonna do?
    Hall and JTS are waste of space. Building a strong team should be the only priority. But Teams dont wanna hear the criticism if they “ make a mistake”, so bad players get a pass.
    Sucks, but Cie’ le vie

  55. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    Re: Hall, seem to remember it wasn’t a strong draft class, especially 2nd day, so wasn’t too upset they picked him, but wasn’t optimistic either.

    Other than Cook, the only other day 2 pick in that draft that stands out to me is Goedeke, which turned out to be a great pick.

    Hall was supposed to fill Will Gholston’s shoes -we’ll see what happens this year. Wil took 3-4 years to develop but he was a 4th round pick.

    If Hall gets a 2nd contract, it won’t be for very much. Not optimistic he’ll perform much differently this season.

    Same goes for JTS.

    That wasn’t a great draft class either. Seem to remember I liked Dickerson but Jensen & Marpet were already here.

    In both cases, not sure who they could’ve drafted that would’ve been better.

    So they both kind of get a pass, but since Hall ended Jensen’s career, he gets less of a pass. What a knucklehead

    Since ’76

  56. adam from ny Says:

    what if:

    jts has 7-8 sacks this season…

    do you resign him ???

  57. Capt.Tim Says:

    Good question! I suppose it depends on how YaYa and Kancey do. If they both make big improvements, and we sign/draft other promising Pass rushers,
    Then no. Hes hitting the bricks.

    If YaYa and Kancey both are partying it up, and regress,
    And we sign no one, and draft more clueless meatheads.
    Then JTS may get a veteran Meathead pass
    Any port in a storm is a good port.
    A lousy pass rusher is better than no pass rusher

  58. BigMacAttack Says:

    Mezzo was my favorite team to watch last season. That team had heart and they were together as a single unit. That says a lot about the Coach and his players. There are a number of players on that team with bright NFL futures. I’d be happy drafting any player from that team, especially a D lineman.

  59. BigMacAttack Says:

    Missouri lol Mizzou autocorrect

  60. ^^mtn^^ Says:

    IF JTS improves and is willing to re-sign & not try to break the bank, could see him as a valuable role player.

    Same with Hall.

    Some guys take longer to develop than others.

    Think about the role that Wil Gholston had here. Not flashy, but very valuable year after year.

    Adam, you ask if JTS gets 7 or 8 sacks. That’s about twice what he usually gets.

    If JTS & Hall fit the plan and play on decent/ friendly contracts, why not keep them around?

    How many 20mil guys can you keep anyway? You need those depth guys.

    Where Darius Robinson comes in, is you would have (in theory) a beefier, healthier line.

    Yaya is bigger & stronger that JTS & Watts, but note how nicked up he got. He toughed it out, but it affected his effectiveness quite a bit.

    Darius could make a lot of sense. He fits the bill in a lot of ways.

    Think about how the Giants used to build their d-line. Every year they’d take a d-lineman on day 1 or 2 it seemed.

    You should be able to get a starting G or C in the 2nd & 3rd rounds this year.

    That’s how Jason usually rolls.

    Will see how the draft pans out

    Since ’76

  61. Eckwood Says:

    Yes to what Teacherman said …….. a GMs job before the draft is to say are there any free agents that make my team better that we can afford and Clowney is a Yes …… hes actually a double yes

  62. Admiral Redbeard Says:

    Defense Rules, 100%! How about draft T’Vondre Sweat, move Vea to Suh’s old spot (RE), and have Hall rotate with Gholston. That’s what a 3-4 D-line should look like.

  63. LongSeason Says:

    Calijah Kancey had a rough start to last season with injury. When he did play he flashed early. Then he petered out. Some of this maybe due to OCs having NFL game film on him. Some may have been experience. Part could be early favorable matchups while latter matchups were unfavorable.
    My hope is that Kancey can become a better pass rusher this year with better coaching, experience and staying healthy. We need a D-line that can get to the QB on a consistent basis to go along with an edge rusher who excels.
    Diaby has the potential to take a giant leap forward this year as an edge rusher, too. It would be nice to see them both with double digit sack while also increasing their knock downs and hurries.
    What I would love to see is Sir Simeon Rice and Lord Warren Sapp come in and give some pass rush coaching to our young Bucs. Lord knows that Logan Hall and JTS need it.
    Drafting another edge rusher may not help this year. It would have to be for the future since edge rushers don’t always have good rookie seasons.
    Keep in mind that Lawrence Taylor did not have double digit sacks until his 4th year. He was still good at 9.5, 7, 9 sacks from 1981-1983.