Red Flag On Kool-Aid McKinstry

April 24th, 2024

New intel.

Let’s just say Joe isn’t drinking the red Kool-Aid after yesterday morning.

Joe published a story on the possibility the Bucs might draft Alabama corner Kool-Aid McKinstry. Joe isn’t fully sold on the Bucs starting secondary being set.

First, are fans really all that secure in Zyon McCollum being handed the starting job? He’s never started a full season. Joe is not anti-McCollum, just concerned about his inconsistency.

And as Joe has rhetorically asked, if the Bucs saw fit to trade away their best corner, how safe is Jamel Dean exactly?

So yesterday after the McKinstry story published, Joe was off to Bill Currie Ford to record draft guru Sean Sullivan’s annual draft podcast. Joe hopes you enjoyed it as much as Joe and Sean and the Sage of Tampa Bay Sports, Ira Kaufman, enjoyed recording it.

Afterwards, Joe popped in the “GM Shuffle” podcast hosted by former NFL suit Michael Lombardi. There, Lombardi had intel on McKinstry that full spooked Joe and raised a big ol’ red flag.

Lombardi noted that throughout his career, Alabama coach Nick Saban was a staunch proponent of man-to-man defense by his corners. It was Saban’s signature defense. His backbone.

Last year with Alabama, Saban deviated greatly.

Lombardi, who worked with Saban with the Browns, pointed a finger at McKinstry as the culprit. Lombardi said there had to be a reason Saban went from playing man-to-man coverage in the secondary “90 percent of the time” to going zone last year almost exclusively.

Lombardi’s belief? That McKinstry can’t play man-to-man sufficiently.

Whoa, Nellie!

Joe wants no part of a corner who cannot play man-to-man defense… in college. In the NFL? This dude would be fried so often his hair would be permanently singed.

No sir. Cross McKinstry off Joe’s list. No red Kool-Aid for Joe.

56 Responses to “Red Flag On Kool-Aid McKinstry”

  1. zzbucs Says:

    Please not a CB on first!!!! No matter who is it!!!! OL or edge on first….

    CB for the third or fourth round!!!

  2. Buc4evr Says:

    He would fit in with the Bucs secondary who are forced to play a soft zone coverage a lot. lol. But I agree we don’t need a guy that can’t play man coverage.

  3. Stanglassman Says:

    These last-minute stories planted the 2nd week in October are often apocryphal. They get leaked out so their client gets drafted higher. I’m not saying it’s untrue, I’m just saying it deserves some healthy skepticism.

  4. SB~LV Says:

    Ennis Rakestraw>Kool Aid

  5. Lord Cornelius Says:

    Seems a little crazy to think they would change the defensive philosophy that drastically because of one CB, when they have 2 CB’s including that one CB projected to go in round 1.

    And he was a starter the prior year. And played significant snaps in 2021. Something isn’t adding up for me

  6. Pickgrin Says:

    Kool Aid in the 1st rd has been a big NO the whole time for me.

    Lack of speed will get killed on the outside in the NFL.

    Clemson’s Wiggins (6-2, 4.28-40) is a legit 1st rd prospect at CB if Latu, Verse, JPJ, Barton and WR Thomas are all off the board and no good trade down options are available.

  7. Beeej Says:

    We already HAD a dude like that

  8. Beeej Says:

    “Lord Cornelius Says:
    April 24th, 2024 at 9:25 am
    Seems a little crazy to think they would change the defensive philosophy that drastically because of one CB, when they have 2 CB’s including that one CB projected to go in round 1.”

    WE started playing a lot of zone last year because Neal for burned repeatedly when isolated on a receiver

  9. Ramblin_Man Says:

    Man, there is some real ignorant stuff posted and said on this page but this is definitely top 10 lol. No way in hell does a coach change an entire defense because of 1 player. That is just not realistic.

  10. Lord Cornelius Says:


    I felt like we were playing zone because we needed to blitz in order to generate a pass rush, and you typically can’t leave the corners & safeties on islands in man while bringing extra bodies on the pass rush. We could vs the Eagles in the playoffs at least- we let Dean & Davis press on the outside most that game.

    Either way I would prefer we add a CB in R2-R4 this year if we need to draft one vs R1. I like our CB/S room though right now more so than last year so I would be fine completely ignoring the position in the draft to focus on the trenches.

    I hope we go with OL or a pass rusher (either DE or DT if it’s the right DT) either way in R1, or trade back.

    If we go CB R1 I want more elite measurables. Wiggins is skinny at just 173 lbs but if the guy from Toleda is somehow there that’d be cool (6’0 195 lbs, 4.33 40)

  11. BA’s Red Pen Says:

    In my Mock Draft I have the Bucs taking Fiddle Faddle Greene in the ninth round. It will be a tremendous value pick, I guarantee it.

  12. Pickgrin Says:

    Lord Corn –

    If being “skinny” is the worst critique you can find on a player, then you should be re-evaluating your objection.

    Nate Wiggins is 6-2. He’s a damn good CB and the kid can fly. He ran a 4.28-40 digitally clocked at the combine and was “unhappy” with that result.

    Half the draft profiles have him listed at 173 and the other half have him listed at 185. So obviously its not that hard for him to add 10-15 lbs and still be one of the fastest guys on the field.

    Pretty sure the 185 is Wiggins normal playing weight last year and he dropped 10-12 lbs or whatever leading up to the combine because he wanted to try and put up one of – if not THE fastest times ever (held by John Ross – 4.22 in 2017).

    Wiggins is selected top 20 in the majority of draft mocks I have seen – so he’s absolutely a 1st rd talent and would be good value and likely the BPA at a position of relative need at #26 if Latu, Verse, JPJ, Barton and WR Thomas are all off the board.

  13. Buddha Says:

    One man,’s weed He’s another man’s flower.

  14. Chris Says:

    No to both Kool-Aid and Chop Robinson. Both have great names but both are busts

  15. stpetebucfan Says:

    The past two seasons the Bucs have had interception numbers in the bottom half of the league.

    Joe would correctly point out…see you need a better edge rush. I agree the pass rush is an important component in giving DB’s perhaps some more opportunities to pick off a stray but a really successful pass rush gets the QB on his butt before he can even toss it.

    OTOH on the back end the Bucs haven’t impressed me either. I think Dean perhaps has more talent than Davis but he’s inconsistent and BOTH of them are always hurt.

    And perhaps my eyes fail me…for somebody who pays attention how many DROPS have Davis and Dean had? They seem to have either suspect hands or weak concentration.

    The Bucs have gotten by with two good not great and certainly not dependable. They have both been FRAGILE! I think Dean may have the talent but not the physical tools necessary to stay out of the hottub and get back out on the field.

    I understand Joe’s concern about McCollum being still a bit unproven but he’s not replacing greatness!!! Davis wasn’t even ranked in the top 32 CB’s by PFF they had Dean ranked 26th last year UP 7 spots from ’22.

    Vernon Hargreaves has left a very bad taste in fans mouths when it comes to picking DB’s in the draft. Davis and Dean are an obvious improvement but they are good to decent at best. THEY CAN BE REPLACED!

    Again I hope the Bucs check out the HEALTH AND DURABILITY of any future DB picks. Dean has a history dating back to college and Davis has been awful at staying on the field. In six seasons Davis missed 22 games more than 3.5 per season and it wasn’t due to a lost season. It was EVERY year where he’d miss 3 or more games.

    BTW his ints were six years…a 0 pick season 3 seasons with just one pick..another with two and his bustout year he had four.

  16. UGotRobbed Says:

    Clemson players scare me (any position), they almost never seam to live up to the hype!
    Best Edge or IOl with the first!

  17. David Says:

    I do not think there is a CB worth the first round.

  18. ECBucs Says:

    David Says:
    April 24th, 2024 at 10:29 am
    I do not think there is a CB worth the first round.


    Ah yes because Quinyon Mitchell, Terrion Arnold, and Nate Wiggins don’t exist

  19. Boss Says:

    well todd likes to play em 40 yards off the LOS, so he should be fine.

  20. Toad Bowels Says:

    If the Bucs could get Tyler Nubin in late 3rd pick, could he play the slot? Or play one of the safety positions with one of the other safety’s at the slot CB?

    Also what do you guys think of the 6’3″ CB who has played at 3 schools, Khyree Jackson of Oregon? He’s 24.7 years old so he should fall and be available late.

  21. Steven007 Says:

    Honestly, the irony is if true, he would fit this defense. Particularly if he’s a good zone corner, which all indications seem to point to. That said, as described above in various posts, there are other corners likely more worthy of a pick in the first round if it came to it.

  22. A Bucs Fan Says:

    No Kool Aid! Bucs needs a DB this draft though. Dean is talented but is injury prone and ,in my opinion, obviously doesn’t love football. He’s a carrot guy. Meaning he’s not internally driven. He’s not lazy like Swaggy Baker but he needs external motivation (like a contract extension) to perform to his actual ability. There are many like him.

    This should be his last year in Tampa and it would be wise for the Bucs to invest in a DB during the mid rounds this year. Especially with AW31’s pending contract extension eating up a ton of money on a position that doesn’t win championships.

  23. Bucs Guy Says:

    No CBs prior to day 3

  24. SlyPirate Says:


    Kool-Aid tape is HORRIBLE! I’m surprised/not surprised how many fans blindly believe a player is good because they’ve been mocked in the first round. It’s group think.

    Forming your own opinion is way more fun and interesting. You can determine for yourself if they are a good fit or not. It’s really easy …

    1. Edge or Google Search: “Player Name” Highlights
    2. Watch 2-3 YouTube Reels.

    A) The team they are playing.
    B) The quarter and score.
    C) Do they “pop”? How exceptional is their play?
    D) Size, Play Speed, Technique

    There is a big difference between Sedrick Van Pran pancaking an LSU LB 10 yards downfield in the 4th quarter of a tie game and Barton finessing a DT against St Mary’s School of the Bind in a blowout game.

    Go to PFF (or another ranking site) and find the players around your player. Go watch their highlights.

    You’ll instantly see the immense difference between Verse, Latu, and Chop. Size, speed, technique, results. It’s not even close. You’ll love Verse, like Chop, and immediately realize Latu is Logan Hall v2.

    Licht has his “types”. Go find recently drafted players at the same position. Watch their college highlights. You’ll get a sense of what Licht gravitates towards.

    Seriously, go watch Mauch, Goedeke, and Marpet’s highlights. It’s super fun to watch these guy absolutely destroy their competition’s body, minds, and spirits. It’s just awesome. Then watch, Barton, JPP, Van Pran, and Frazier. 2 are finesse. 2 are soul crushers. 1 played against NFL top tier talent.


  25. Letsbucinggo Says:

    If nate wiggins is available at #26 maybe but no kool aid!

  26. Pickgrin Says:

    SlyPirate Says:
    “Latu is Logan Hall v2”

    WTF?? LOL

    You write a mini ‘how to’ essay on the importance of researching prospects yourself – and THAT is the conclusion you come to on Latu?

    Something, somewhere is very wrong with your methodology if you don’t see a beast of a pass rusher when you look at Laitu Latu.

    Latu is easily the best pure pass rusher in this draft and just might be the best pass rushing prospect of the last 2-3 years.

    He’s a lot closer to a Watt or a Bosa than he is to winding up like Logan Hall.

  27. Scott Says:

    I think this draft class is perfect for the Bucs. Lots of QBs and OTs in the first 25 picks. So I hope those interior lineman and EDGE rushers have a chance to fall.

  28. MadMax Says:

    Javon Bullard with our 2nd. He’s a safety but can also play slot CB….we only have Whitehead on a 1 year contract (which we could bring him back)…Bullard reminds me a lot of Winfield Jr, and I was all over us to draft him.

  29. Pickgrin Says:

    Max –

    Jordan Whitehead – 2 years – $9M – $4.5M guaranteed

    So yea – its essentially a 1 year deal as far as the guarantee goes – but as long as Whitehead is playing well he will be a Buccaneers safety for years to come.

    I am super stoked to see Whitehead and Winfield reunited as seasoned veterans now. They will be flying around, making plays and layin the wood on RBs, TEs and WRs coming into their area.

  30. BillyBucco Says:

    We aren’t taking a S in round 2 forget about it.
    We have 3 or 4 that look good already.
    I am also excited about W and W.
    One of the best pure fit signings of the offseason.
    I hope we go Edgerrin Cooper or Payton Wilson in the 2nd.

  31. Lord Cornelius Says:


    I could probably be OK with Nate Wiggins. I just need to find an NFL comparison of a 6’1+ type player at that light of weight to feel better lol but im sure there are some guys.

    Most average corners are like 190+. Going from 175 to 190 when it’s all muscle is quite a transformation.

    I don’t really get the logic on the dropping of weight to run that 40 time. His weight/toughness appears to be scouts main concerns, regardless of whatever likely false other weight listings he’s had on random websites.

    He officially measured 6’1 173 lbs and ran a 4.28. His draft stock would probably be a lot better if he measured at like 183+ lbs and ran a 4.38. So not a great decision really if he really purposefully cut weight at an already slender frame just for a 40 time IMO

  32. Jeffs grandpa Says:


  33. Beeej Says:

    Why would we have two corners whose specialty is man, playing zone instead?

  34. Pickgrin Says:

    Lord C – thats me guessing as to why he was 173 at the combine.

    I did see where Wiggins said he was disappointed in the 4.28 time – that he expected to run a 4.24 or better – so obviously that 40 time was very important to him. Maybe he dropped a few lbs intentionally to try and run a tad faster and break a record. Or maybe he worked out extra hard leading up to the combine and some weight just came off… I dunno.

    Anyway -he played in the 180s last year and his height indicates he could be anywhere from 185-195 and be fine in the NFL.

    He’s a good CB and most everyone has him rated higher than the 26th best player in this class.

    He’s a better option than Kool Aid – and if we’re forced to look at positions outside of Edge, IOL or WR in the 1st based on how the draft falls – then Wiggins would be a good pick for the Bucs at #26 if he were sitting there.

  35. Dave Pear Says:

    No thanks to Gatorade , but seriously, if the dude plays zone well and not press man, fine. Bloweszo hates man to man defense. He loves soft, off coverages where he gets to design exotic blitz packages and complex coverage options and variants that a cray supercomputer would short circuit on.

    I’m not a fan of this dude, but Bowels would probably love him if he sucks at man coverage.

  36. Dave Pear Says:

    Oh, and @BA’s Red Pen – agree about Fiddle Faddle but have him coming to the Bucs a round earlier. It sounds corny but he has a sweet “pop” to his game.

  37. Rod Munch Says:

    Well he sounds like a great fit for Bowles since he’s going to be running his sloppy soft zone 90% of the time.

  38. kaimaru Says:


    You know Kool-Aid was their #1 CB in 2022 and their #2 CB last year when Terrion Arnold became the #1 CB? If you should be worried, you should be worried about Arnold

  39. Proudbucsfan Says:

    I agree with Pickgrin 100% my first choice is Brian Thomas Jr if he is there or Verse Wiggins would be a good pick also if he is there. Truly I believe our targeted players are gone at 26 and I have a strong feeling we trade back tomorrow night.

  40. westernbuc Says:

    Idk why we’d need to be skeptical about a fact that he didn’t play much man-to-man. This was Chris Simms’ knock on the guy. Nick Saban loves playing man coverage and yet didn’t this year. That tells me he can’t play man.

  41. BUCman Says:

    Mostly underrated corner in the draft is TJ Tampa. Head and shoulders better than both McKinstry and Wiggins. Edge and IOL are priorities in first round but if those players are gone the next options are Wide receiver and cornerback. DeJean and Tampa would be options.

  42. unbelievable Says:

    Well, Todd Bowles just LOVES his zone defense, so…

  43. Scott Says:

    I just dug up some info… both him and Arnold were elite in zone and worse at man. McKinstry had a better grade than Arnold in Man coverage but, both were still good. Not bad my any means. Arnold 61, Kool-Aid 74.

  44. Scott Says:

    I hate to plug them so much but PFF has Koolaid with the 12th highest grade last year. Mitchell is the only higher in this draft. Koolaid is ranked 12. 50-150 spots higher than Dejean, Tampa, Rakestraw, etc.. give me the guy who played better teams and has a higher grade all day. I doubt he will even be there at our pick at this point.

  45. Tbbucs3 Says:

    Drafting a corner in the 1st round would be stupid…..

    The Bucs main issue lies in the pass rush plus its not gonna be hard to find better CB play from Carlton Davis last year.

    Go D-Line or O-Line

  46. Scott Says:

    If I’m just going off of PFF grades though Chop comes in at a whopping number 9 for his position. Who knows? I know I don’t watch enough film to know. I can’t wait to see how it pans out.

  47. Rod Munch Says:

    I’ve seen a number of mock drafts talking about why he’s a natural fit for Todd Bowles “aggressive man-to-man defense.” You can tell people aren’t actually watching games when they say nonsense like that.

    Bowles played over 90% zone defense for the first half of the season – and only started to take risks and get aggressive on defense when the team was approaching its 4-7 lowpoint.

    Since then Bowles has got rid of two of his best man-to-man players in White and Davis, and also got rid of Shaq (which I’m fine with due to salary, but he’s still down a pass rusher).

    The issue with Davis was that he stunk in zone. The issue with White, was that he stunk in zone. Bowles isn’t getting rid of them to run an aggressive man-to-man defense.

  48. Captain Vic Says:

    Okay, this article seals a deal, please draft them McCaffrey kid!! He’s already a triple threat, and with his football acumen, and NFL pedigree, I’m sure he could be a quadruple threat and probably play great man-to-man coverage as a cornerback in the NFL. Plus, if he doesn’t have to play D, he might just be a monster Playmaker on the offensive side of the ball where he belongs! Rod is right, we do have to make up for an edge rusher after losing Shaq and also right that D. White was horrible in zone anything and or pass coverage. BUT he might have been the disruptive Edge rusher that we need, he could have worked on some spin moves and swim moves, and if he got a few sacks, success…..? Literally if we had given up on him as a Linebacker, and just said all right get in there rush the passer set the edge that’s all you gotta do… But we’ll never know, so draft the McCaffrey kid!!!

  49. Cobraboy Says:

    No flags on Vontae Mack.

  50. Saskbucs Says:

    Trey Hendrickson requested a trade apparently. Bengals say they aren’t moving him but we should send our 2nd rounder or JTS and 4th rounder I dunno what’s fair but I hope Licht is on the phone. Maybe can’t fit him in the cap but it’s not an outrageous number at all for a guy with 17 sacks last year and 40 over the last 3 years. That would open up the draft!

  51. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Questionable speed, and I’ve also read that Kool-Aid is a diva-type and lazy.

  52. Joe in Michigan Says:

    Saskbucs: The Bucs would have to give a HIGHER pick to try to throw JTS in the deal. Hahaha

  53. jarrett Says:








  54. SteelStudBuc Says:

    For starters… no, please don’t take a guy named Kool-aid LOL… NO F’N WAY

  55. Saskbucs Says:

    @Joe in Michigan , I was trying to be optimistic:) 2nd JTS and next year 5th they retain 30% salary how’s that?

  56. Bucfan94 Says:

    I’d rather the Bucs get a OL, EDGE with the first. But that also depends on who’s there, or if anyone falls. If there’s a there’s a CB or a LB better than any OL or EDGE, than they by all means should be considered. I like who we have, don’t get me wrong, but David isn’t playing much longer, and while I like Britt, if you can upgrade, you upgrade. Same with Dean and McCollum with upgrades.

    It all just depends on how day 1 goes. But as long as we don’t reach, and find ways to improve areas we need to improve, I’ll be happy.