“I Couldn’t Tell The Difference”

April 29th, 2024

Buccaneers third-round pick, defensive back Tykee Smith.

One former GM thinks the Bucs got tremendous value with one of their third-round draft picks on Friday.

In a review of the Tampa Bay draft, former Vikings and Dolphins GM Rick Spielman said when he watched film of defensive back Tykee Smith out of Georgia, the Bucs’ pick at No. 89 overall, “I couldn’t tell the difference” between Smith and fellow Georgia defensive back Javon Bullard.

Why is that interesting? Bullard was taken by the Packers in Round 2 — 31 picks before the Bucs grabbed Smith.

Joe has heard other analysis calling Smith underrated in the Georgia secondary. He’s projected to be a nickel cornerback with the Bucs.

Joe just hopes the guy can play, but it’s starting to smell like Bucs general manager Jason Licht and his team got strong value in the Smith selection.

35 Responses to ““I Couldn’t Tell The Difference””

  1. David Says:

    I think him, the WR, and the UTEP G all will prove to be great value picks

  2. Cho Says:

    Love it. Tykee is a tough, smart, instinctive defensive back that flies around and is always close to the ball. You can’t teach instincts.

    Love our draft overall. Solid investments on the trenches without reaching and without overinvesting.

    All of the players we got seem like genuine high character guys.

  3. Eric Says:

    Can he play I’m a Gator fan and this guy hands down was my favorite college defensive player to watch! I was hoping my Favorite NFL Team the Bucs got him!

  4. A Bucs Fan Says:

    I can see Tykee playing the Mike Edwards role in Bowles defense.

  5. Lord Cornelius Says:

    I like that he gives us both nickle competition/depth AND safety depth. We had no S depth after Whitehead & Winfield Jr

  6. First Name Greatest Says:

    Who cares about value, be productive and help the team win and you are a good pick

  7. Fred McNeil Says:

    Out of all the picks he’s the one I’m least enamoured with. It’s nice to hear he is loved by someone. I like pleasant surprises.

  8. SB~LV Says:

    As usual everyone agrees

  9. Dave Pear Says:

    As long as he’s not injury prone and doesn’t love baseball, he should be fine.

  10. Boss Says:

    I do like this pick. We are gonna need a new ball hawk when zy goes outside.

    nickel or safety, I like it.

  11. gotbbucs Says:

    Bowles typically knows how to use these types of guys in his defense. I’m all for picking one of these tweener slot/safeties in every draft. We sorely missed not having that Mike Edwards type guy in our defense last year.

  12. BucsFan55 Says:

    I feel like he is gonna have a yaya diaby type impact

  13. J Says:

    Underrated? If anything these analysts are splitting hairs between Smith and Bullard. Smith was definitely more productive last year, and he had to navigate a school change as well as the whole Covid debacle. I like that he’s dealt with some diversity already in his young career, and he stayed productive when he was able to play. Can Bullard handle all that diversity? Maybe (he was geoomed by Kirby), but we know Smith can for sure.

  14. Jake been there since the beginning Says:

    You know like always, just like last year the Bucs are only going to win three games. I’ve been saying all along, we never get no real love from all of those people. So we’ll just have to show them.. Again and Again 😀. Let’s Go Bucs!!!

  15. Noclu4u Says:

    Bucs did VERY well in this draft . Anytime you get 3 starters in a draft you did well. In two years I can see 4 starters from this draft . Very impressive.
    As always Go BUCS !!!

  16. Shane Callahan Says:

    Wasn’t even on my radar but after reviewing film, I like this pick.

  17. Rod Munch Says:

    From reading scouting reports about Smith, his downside is playing man-to-man, where he doesn’t have the long speed needed to keep up with NFL wide receivers. More proof that Bowles is going to be running more zone than ever – where often quickness is more important than long speed.

  18. Pickgrin Says:

    I trust the insider intel on this pick since Todd Bowles’ son plays at Georgia – and McClendon, and our new WR coach was at Ga the last 2 years.

  19. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I wanted a LB with this pick…….but Smith does look like a good pick for the position. This is absolutely, positively a Todd Bowles pick.

    “OK, Jason…..I get one pick in this draft……select Tykee”

    Another point…..we stayed put for every single one of our picks…..that tells me there was someone on our board at the time……

  20. JimBobBuc Says:

    I like the way the secondary is shaping up. As we know, Whitehead will be a big improvement over Neal, just look at some PFF safety grades.

    Ryan Neal 46.6
    Jordan Whitehead 68.1
    Antoine Winfield 90.7

    Here’s some CB grades:

    Zion McCollum 52.1
    Carleton Davis 58.2
    Jamel Dean 68.3
    Christian Izien 66.8
    Bryce Hall 66.4

    I hope Bryce Hall can learn the system quickly, could he start over McCollum?

    I like Tykee, but I’m not sure how quickly he will learn and get on the field.

  21. Crickett Baker Says:

    I watched his highlight film. I got wet. He is a joy to watch.

  22. Hodad Says:

    He wouldn’t be starting for Georgia’s defense if he couldn’t play Joe. You need to relax bro.

  23. Bucs Guy Says:

    Wish the Bucs took a LB here. I don’t see him playing much behind Whitehead and Winfield Jr. You don’t draft depth in the 3rd round when you have needs for a starter at a position.

  24. Let Them Eat Bake Says:

    It’s starting to look like we’re transitioning to a base 3-3-5 defense. If so, I think that’s a wise move in a league that’s built around the passing game.

  25. lambchopp Says:

    I think it was on the Zac and Jay Radio show today where they shat all over Rd 3 through Rd 7 and questioned Jason Licht’s picks. Seriously. Some people. They kept saying they don’t understand why they grabbed a Safety in Tykee. Ummm, maybe cuz they didn’t?!

  26. lambchopp Says:

    Someone with some real Sports IQ should be on the radio cuz these amateurs are hot garbage. It’s just opinion pieces with zero intelligence. And they usually always go in circles, “oh we like the players, we just don’t understand why the Bucs drafted these positions.” How about depth, competition, and injuries? “Zion was so good last sesaon….but only the first half of the season.” Well you just answered your own question then.

  27. geno711 Says:

    Let Them Eat Bake Says:
    April 29th, 2024 at 5:08 pm
    It’s starting to look like we’re transitioning to a base 3-3-5 defense. If so, I think that’s a wise move in a league that’s built around the passing game

    Well, you know for sure that we and every other team is going to play 5 or more in the defensive backfield on over 70 percent of the snaps during a game.

  28. infomeplease Says:

    Everyone has an opinion, I hope Spielman nails this one!

  29. 1#bucsfan Says:

    The one thing I’m not concerned with is our DBs being developed. That’s deff. Strength of Bowles. Dean Davis Zion whitehead Edwards Winfield all turned out above average and some great like Winfield. Dean n davis prob hit their ceiling I know fans don’t like them but they did help us win a SB. Biwles will develop the new guys now pass rushing is deff a concern.

  30. Woodenman Says:

    Where’s Capt. Tim he said this was our worst draft pick. Of course he says alot of stupid stuff.

  31. Booger Says:

    Yep. I will agree with this… They were pretty much identical runnin’ around all over the field around the football just making plays.

  32. Booger Says:


    Where did you hear that Bullard has had no “diversity” throughout his life… Did he refuse to take the recommended courses while at UGA or something???

  33. Booger Says:


    Old Whitehead is almost in the exact middle as Winfield Jr. & Neal there! LORD, was Neal not ever bad. REAL Baaaadd.

  34. Drunkinybor Says:

    I doubt the step guard makes the team. Practice squad possibly. His feet are super sloppy , looks like flippers. Love his attitude and he seems like a smart good guy. He has a lot of catching up to do.

  35. Esteban85 Says:

    Led tackles on the Georgia Bulldogs former 29 wins in a row defensive juggernaut with 70 tackles as a safety and hauled in 4 picks last season. Sounds like the best player on the defense to me