Draft Grader: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Khaled Elsayed takes a look at the Bucs' draft choices from 2008-10 as they sail into their second year under the leadership of Greg Schiano.

| 4 years ago

Draft Grader: Tampa Bay Buccaneers

In case you haven’t noticed, we’ve been going back over the 2008, 2009, and 2010 draft class of each franchise and assigning each pick a grade. Up next? Well, that’s the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Each pick between the 2008 and 2010 draft classes has been given a grade between +2.0 and -2.0 (in 0.5 increments) that depends upon:

• Where they were drafted
• Their performance
• Their contribution (how many snaps their team got out of them)
• Other factors, such as unforeseen injuries and conditions that could not have been accounted for

Let’s take a look at how the Bucs drafted.


+2.0: You’ve just found Tom Brady in the 6th round

Find a Tom Brady? The Bucs would settle for their first round quarterback to develop some consistency.


+1.5: Getting much more than you bargained for!

Not so much …


+1.0: The scouts nailed it!

Gerald McCoy, DT (3rd overall pick in 2010): His first two years in the league acted as a tease. The talent was obviously there but the durability wasn’t, due to a pair of torn biceps. Those fears were put to rest, however, when McCoy had an excellent 2012, finishing second in our defensive tackle rankings. A rare talent that we look forward to seeing more of.

Mike Williams, WR (101st overall pick in 2010): Has responded really well to a new coaching staff after it looked like his career might be going the wrong direction in 2011. A quality starter with difference-making ability, even if there are some lapses that frustrate.


+0.5: Never hurts to find a solid contributor

Aqib Talib, CB (20th overall pick in 2008): Talib would be higher based on talent, but he hasn’t always produced and has done very little to put those pre-draft character concerns to rest. A +32.1 grade in coverage over the past five years is impressive, but his flaws saw Tampa Bay ship him out rather than try and lock him down in the long-term.

Jeremy Zuttah, G/ C (83rd overall pick in 2008): A versatile lineman, Zuttah has recovered from a disastrous 2009 to become a solid starter that you can rely on. Good value in the third round.

Geno Hayes, LB (175th overall pick in 2008): At times, Hayes can look exceptional. The only problem is (and this was especially evident in 2011), he can also look like something of a headless chicken. That’s a large part of why he’s no longer with the club.

E.J. Biggers, CB (217th overall pick in 2009): Took a big step forward last year to earn a +6.2 grade in coverage. Can he build on that? If so he’ll be worth more than a +0.5.

Sammie Stroughter, WR (233rd overall pick in 2009): The Bucs got more out of Stroughter than you would normally get out of man who was selected in the seventh round. That includes some good work on special teams and competent receiver play.

Cody Grimm, S (210th overall pick in 2010): After an encouraging rookie year, it was something of a disappointment that his sophomore season was cut short by injury. A talent on special teams, he’s repaid the investment in him.

Dekoda Watson, LB (217th overall pick in 2010): The Bucs are clearly intrigued by Watson who they’ve gotten onto the field over the past three years. That hasn’t led to much production, but this is a win for the team based on his work on special teams.


0.0: Nothing ventured, nothing gained (It could have been worse)

Josh Johnson, QB (160th overall pick in 2008): One of those low-risk picks, Johnson got some game time holding the fort until Josh Freeman was ready. It didn’t work out, but they got something out of a fifth-round quarterback.

Roy Miller, DT (81st overall pick in 2009): While he did play better in 2012, Miller isn’t a player who consistently does a good job when blocked one-on-one. He is now with the Jaguars.

Xavier Fulton, OT (155th overall pick in 2009): After having problems in college with injuries, Fulton spent his debut year on injured reserve and never saw the field for the Bucs.

Erik Lorig, FB (253rd overall pick in 2010): He’s shown signs of development after moving from college defensive end to NFL fullback.


-0.5: That pick was not put to good use

Dre Moore, DT (115th overall pick in 2008): Moore spent his first year in the league on the Bucs’ practice squad, but did get on the field in 2009. There he saw 189 snaps and earned a -3.7 grade before the Bucs finally pulled the plug on his tenure with the team in 2010.

Josh Freeman, QB (17th overall pick in 2009): There have been plenty of moments of promise, but ultimately Freeman just hasn’t pushed his team to the level he should have given where he was taken. He could finish only 26th in our quarterback rankings last year with a horrid end to the season. Needs to step up.

Kyle Moore, DE (117th overall pick in 2009): After two years with the team, Moore found himself waived by the Bucs. It’s quite incredible that the Bucs relied on him to start after he proved incapable of generating pressure and washed out against the run. Would go on to look a lot better with the Bills.

Brian Price, DT (35th overall pick in 2010): A horrible pelvic injury derailed an initially promising career. Price then fell out with the new coaching staff after personal tragedy led to some locker room issues.

Arrelious Benn, WR (39th overall pick in 2010): Benn looked extremely promising as a rookie toward the end of 2010, before an ACL tear cut short his year. That seemed to impact his performance in 2011 and he never recovered to contribute significantly before being traded away.

Myron Lewis, CB (67th overall pick in 2010): Drafted to be the guy to play opposite Aqib Talib, Lewis hasn’t exactly panned out with the Bucs who are reported to be disappointed in his development. Time is running out.

Brent Bowden, P (172nd overall pick in 2010): If you’re going to draft the punter, then he should at least last into the season. Bowden was a completely wasted pick.


-1.0: What a waste!

There is something worse…


-1.5: The scouts/ coaches failed, big time!

Dexter Jackson, WR (58th overall pick in 2008): Six snaps on offense (two of which were pre-snap penalties) and 33 combined punt and kickoff returns. Compounding this is that the former second-round pick was cut a year later. Ouch.


-2.0: You just drafted the love child of JaMarcus Russell and Ryan Leaf!

There were no Russell/ Leaf hybrids to pick from.




Follow Khaled on Twitter: @PFF_Khaled


  • http://twitter.com/jcdelatorre JC De La Torre

    I’m typically fascinated by your articles but I’m just shocked that Josh Freeman is rated lower than a player who never played a down in a Buccaneer uniform. That’s just ridiculous.