Bucs Connection With Elijah Klein

April 29th, 2024

Link to Bucs’ rookie.

While most Bucs sixth-round picks make the 53-man roster, a decent percentage don’t. So any little morsel of information that a player can use as an advantage is welcome.

And it seems the Bucs’ rookie sixth-round pick, gnarly guard Elijah Klein, already has a Bucs connection, aside from him doing homework on Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht.

Back at UTEP, Klein had a guy by the name of James Bain as his offensive line coach. Bain took a job recently with former Bucs receivers coach P.J. Fleck, who is now head coach at the University of Minnesota.

Big deal, right? Well, Bain, a former offensive lineman himself, was a college teammate of former Bucs guard and current Bengals starter Alex Cappa, a third-round pick of Tampa Bay in 2018.

It seems two years ago, Cappa did a Zoom tutorial with a couple of UTEP offensive linemen about what they need to do as small school players to get on NFL teams’ radars — and if drafted or signed, what they can expect and what will be expected.

Klein was one of the linemen that Cappa tutored.

Cappa played college ball for Humboldt State and was the Bucs’ starting right guard during the glorious 2020 Super Bowl-winning season.

What does this mean in the grand scheme of things? Joe isn’t sure, but Joe guesses Cappa’s transition from a small school in California to becoming a starter with the Bucs was brought up.

So maybe Klein has a little bit of an idea already of how things work at One Buc Palace.

(Hat tip to J.C. Allen for finding this.)

21 Responses to “Bucs Connection With Elijah Klein”

  1. Capt Ahab Says:

    It means nothing. Cappa is a decent and maybe surprising somewhat serviceable guard in the NFL. Klein has to make his own, he has an opportunity.

  2. BillyBucco Says:

    Love this guys attitude.
    Could be an absolute steal.
    He is a smart one that’s for sure.
    Refrigerator Klein.

  3. MadMax Says:

    Nice digging Joes….great story, i love it

    We got two O line and a small shifty RB AND pass rush AND a CB….im a happy guy…Jason is the man!

  4. Tony Says:

    Could’ve used another LB & DT. This is where trading down & getting extra picks would come in handy. Curious to see if they put Tykee at S or CB. Especially with Antoine & Jordan back there.

  5. Onetrickpony Says:

    Little guy,not. Like this pick

  6. adam from ny Says:

    quick wing-dog analysis of the draft before it’s totally digested:

    round 1 – barton – excellent pic, but totally boring and not sexy, unless you’re real fan and love the big uglies…yes we love the big uglies…especially as strong and versatile as barton…

    round 2 – braswell – very nice pic right here at #2…reviewed his tape a while back and often heard whispers of him as a top 10 edge as teams prepared for the draft…should develop and slide in across from yaya nicely over time…

    round 3 – smith – i wasn’t too big on drafting a cb/s and wasn’t really feeling this pic in the 3rd…in fact i don’t know much about him – more research needed on my end…but this is a bowles pic – so he must see something really good in the guy…they went pretty early on a safety which surprised me…

    round 3 – mcmillan – i was high on oregon receiver troy franklin…and watching us pass on him multiple times didn’t thrill me…then grabbing penix’s #2 receiver instead had me wondering…hopefully this works out well down the road – i noticed a lot of board members seem pretty happy with the pick…and he does look quite polished already as per the tapes…

    round 4 – bucky – this is the sexiest of our picks by far…and i really like this one…they are supplying baker with a lot of weapons…the offense should expand a bit under coen and be a fun watch…bucky is an exciting player who weaves thru traffic seemingly better than white – our backfield combo just got very interesting…gotta wonder where chase edmonds stands at this point…and tucker seems all but gone…

    round 6 – klein – really liking this guy…strong and stout…gave a heck of a good post draft interview with the local pen and mic club…being a 6th round pick makes you think he’s not all that…but he could surprise…seems like a passionate bulldozer type…could get stolen off ps if kept there all season…

    round 7 – culp – more research needed on said dude…seems fast and slim…a tweener caught between te and wr maybe…he’s just a watch and see type – heck he’s a 7th rounder…does he replace ko kieft?

  7. adam from ny Says:

    i bet klein makes the team

  8. Capt.Tim Says:

    I think Jason Licht pulled his small school magic with Elijah Klien.
    His tape and Stats scream Center.
    I really prefer Barton at Guard.
    Could Klein be this years small school find for the O-Line?

    Man, I hope so! We had two holes in our Oline. Barton fills on spot.
    Meybe Klein will fill another?

  9. Proudbucsfan Says:

    I really like this kid. Rooting for him from day one, only time will tell. Are we going to start calling this kid Ice Box ? That would be a great nickname for him if he makes it.

  10. BucsFan since '96 Says:

    @Adam from NY,
    I agree with much of what you wrote but after watching recent video of Sean Tucker’s workouts I wouldn’t count him out. It was impressive. Unlike last off-season when he was unable to practice due to medical reasons he seems determined to compete and show he belongs. It wouldn’t surprise me if he is the most improved player and has a breakout season.

  11. Bucs Guy Says:

    Overall I like the picks. Only questions are Smith and Bucky. Don’t understand the 3rd rd pick of a back up who will rarely see any time behind Winfield and Whitehead. Also, the Bucs really needed a power RB and I don’t believe Bucky can fill that role.

  12. SenileSenior Says:

    My understanding is that Smith is an ave nickel back spad will supplant Isien. Anybody know?

  13. SenileSenior Says:

    … an ace nickel back

  14. geno711 Says:

    I like getting Klein as a potential depth piece for us.
    I do not think he will be a starter this year. You cannot throw a guy out there that is not capable of pass protect.

    Probably 50/50 for us in 2025. We will have to see if this set of OL coaches are as strong as Gilbert and Goodwin in teaching pro pass protection to young lineman.

  15. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    adam from ny

    Your analysis is close to mine…..I also question the Smith pick….would have preferred a backup LB to backup S…..but I think they will use him at nickel & he may start One injury to Winfield or Whithead and Smith takes the field.

  16. geno711 Says:

    And I think that Tykee Smith will start the season either as our 5th or 6th guy in our defensive backfield. And in either case, whether 5th or 6th, he should end up with many games of over 70 percent of the snaps.

    The Bucs and the NFL as a whole play dime coverage over 70 percent of the snaps.

    For example, Baltimore last year had 6 cornerbacks and 5 safeties that during some games had over 70 percent of snaps.

    Arizona had 7 corners and 3 safeties.
    Atlanta had 6 corners and 3 safeties.
    Bills 6 and 3.
    Carolina 8 and 6
    Chicago 4 and 4.

    I could keep going.

    So, Tampa had 4 corners with over 70 percent snaps in any game and 3 safeties with over 70 percent snaps in any game. So, the complaints about our corners staying healthy are lost on me since it seems that every team in the NFL pretty much has to deal with losing these guys during the season and putting others in.

    In the NFL, including the Bucs, teams play dime coverage about 70 percent of the snaps. DB’s get injured a lot more than other positions and miss games.

    Looking at the guys who get time, I say that:
    Winfield, Whitehead, Dean, McCollum, Izien, and Smith all get

  17. ModHairKen Says:

    Klein makes team and starts. He’s too violent not to.

  18. Shane Callahan Says:

    Hoping all these picks pan out. You cannot be last in the league in rushing plus not give your QB time to throw and expect continued success. Go Bucs!

  19. Jake been there since the beginning Says:

    I think that having Cappa teaching any kid some things would be huge, as long as they really take the time to use it. Aren’t College kids supposed to be really smart?? So soaking up info is what they do, to make the dream a reality. Welcome to the NFL, now play your heart out and stay on course.

  20. adam from ny Says:

    BucsFan since ’96:

    i’ve really liked sean tucker too…

    until he always just looked like he was running low and was just about to fall down…lol…it was weird how he looked like he was always just about to go down…before contact…

    initially i really liked his running style and he reminded me of a smaller nick chubb…like a small bowling ball…

    i’m yet to see it, but hope he comes up big this year

  21. heyjude Says:

    Great info on Elijah Blue! I like the pick and hope he does well.