2011 NFL Draft Recap: Bucs Fans Pleased With Selections

The Bucs go defensive in the draft and earn high remarks from Bucs fans.

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2011 NFL Draft Recap: Taking Two Defensive Ends Could Pay Off For Bucs

The Bucs made two gambles with their second round pick in the NFL Draft. They took a player in Da'Quan Bowers wo plays the same position as their first round pick Adrian Clayborn, who also happens to have a knee injury that nobody seems to be confident in it's severity. But if that gamble pays off, the Bucs could have four defensive lineman starters acquired over the past two drafts, and one of the youngest good units in the league, according to Jim Corbett of USA Today.

"If he does play as long I think, even if its just quote unquote for his first contract, Da'Quan will cause a lot of sleepless nights hopefully for (NFC South foes) Sean Payton, Drew Brees; Mike Smith, Matt Ryan and Ron Rivera and Cam Newton. And if it doesn't, I can sleep at night because I felt it was the right choice for us."

Bowers and Clayborn could become bookends along the defensive line, and turn what was a position of weakness into a position of strength very quickly. All of that is, of course, if Bowers' knee stays healthy. And that could be a pretty big "if."

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2011 NFL Draft Picks: The Tampa Bay Bucs

The NFL Draft is over, but how did the Tampa Bay Bucs do with their picks? According to most mainstream analysts, pretty darn good: Kiper gave them a B+, CBS gave them an A, and Rob Rang gave them an A-. Overall, it was a pretty solid showing for the Bucs, although the real strength of their draft came within the first three rounds.

Our friends over at Bucs Nation have put together a great summary of the Bucs' draft picks, including some of their own analysis. Enjoy their handiwork:

Round Pick Overall Player Grade and analysis
1 20 20 DE Adrian Clayborn, Iowa Grade: B+. A physical, violent defensive end he adds some attitude to the Bucs defense, but pass rush is questionable.
2 19 51 DE Da'Quan Bowers, Clemson Grade: A. Bowers dropped because of injury concerns, but the Bucs should still get at least 5 years of top-5 play out of him
3 20 84 LB Mason Foster, Washington Grade: A. Foster is a powerful, downhill linebacker who can play all 3 positions
4 7 104 TE Luke Stocker, Tennessee Grade: C. Stocker will add versatility to the Bucs offense, but they gave up two fourth-rounders to draft him.
5 20 151 S Ahmad Black, Florida Grade: C. Black is small and slow but a natural football player who could develop into a good slot defender. I think he was selected too high.
6 22 187 RB Allen Bradford, USC Grade: D. Bradford is a huge, hard runner who will do good work in short-yardage situations, but I don't see what else he brings to the offense.
7 19 222 CB Anthony Gaitor, Florida International Grade: B A small, feisty cornerback who could come in and play as a dime back. Won't play outside, but could be good as a slot defender
7 35 238 TE Greg Hardy, Idaho Grade: D. A receiving tight end who will be a backup third-down TE at best.

For more news and analysis on the Buc, check out Bucs Nation.

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2011 NFL Draft Recap: A Strong Defensive Haul For The Bucs

In the final round of the 2011 NFL Draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers added some tight end depth and high-upside cornerback. With their two 7th round picks, the Bucs selected FIU defensive back Anthony Gaitor and Idaho TE Greg Hardy.

The Bucs Nation community has largely graded the Bucs draft with a B score, impressed especially with the high-quality defenders taken early. For a Bucs team on the rise, the 2011 Draft does nothing to slow their momentum.

Sander from Bucs Nation has compiled a list of the Bucs picks from days 1, 2, and 3, including some grades and thoughts:

Round Pick Overall Player Grade and analysis
1 20 20 DE Adrian Clayborn, Iowa Grade: B+. A physical, violent defensive end he adds some attitude to the Bucs defense, but pass rush is questionable.
2 19 51 DE Da'Quan Bowers, Clemson Grade: A. Bowers dropped because of injury concerns, but the Bucs should still get at least 5 years of top-5 play out of him
3 20 84 LB Mason Foster, Washington Grade: A. Foster is a powerful, downhill linebacker who can play all 3 positions
4 7 104 TE Luke Stocker, Tennessee Grade: C. Stocker will add versatility to the Bucs offense, but they gave up two fourth-rounders to draft him.
5 20 151 S Ahmad Black, Florida Grade: C. Black is small and slow but a natural football player who could develop into a good slot defender. I think he was selected too high.
6 22 187 RB Allen Bradford, USC Grade: D. Bradford is a huge, hard runner who will do good work in short-yardage situations, but I don't see what else he brings to the offense.
7 19 222 CB Anthony Gaitor, Florida International Grade: B A small, feisty cornerback who could come in and play as a dime back. Won't play outside, but could be good as a slot defender
7 35 238 TE Greg Hardy, Idaho Grade: D. A receiving tight end who will be a backup third-down TE at best.

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Buccaneers Draft Brusing Running Back Allen Bradford In Round Six

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers still have two more picks remaining in round seven before their 2011 NFL Draft comes to an end. But while we wait to see how the Bucs conclude their weekend from Radio City Music Hall in New York City, a few preliminary words about their selection with the 22nd pick in round six (187th overall), USC running back Allen Bradford.

At just 5’11", Bradford packs a mean punch behind his nearly 250 pound frame. For a man that size, Bradford is surprisingly fast, clocking a 4.58 40-yard dash time. Of course, that kind of speed will preclude him from being an every-down back in the NFL. But really, in today’s game, there really aren’t too many teams that don’t lean heavily on multiple running backs.

For Bradford, his opportunity to contribute in Tampa will come in short-yardage and goal-to-go type situations. His footwork between the tackles is pretty good for such a large guy, and when he’s not unnecessarily bouncing it outside in search of a big run, his balance and ability to keep his pads low and drive the pile forward make him a nice prospect, especially for where he was drafted.
For a team that’s not going to blow anybody off the ball with its offensive line, Bradford might be able to find a niche on the Bucs’ squad beginning in 2011.

Stay tuned both here and at Bucs Nation for another round of updates about Tampa Bay’s seventh round selections, as well as for a complete recap of the weekend’s proceedings.

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2011 NFL Draft Round 5 Results: Buccaneers Grab Local Product Ahmad Black , SS, Florida

We’re just about one quarter of the way through the sixth round of the 2011 NFL Draft, with Tampa Bay set to pick at No. 22 in round six (187th overall) here shortly. As was previously noted, the Buccaneers finally drafted an offensive player in round four, TE Luke Stocker, after focusing on improving the front seven of the defense in the opening three rounds. In the 5th, the Buccaneers turned their attention back to the defensive side of the ball with a very intriguing selection — strong safety Ahmad Black from the University of Florida.

A Lakeland, FL native, Black was a playmaking machine during his four years in Gainesville. As a sophomore in 2008, Black had seven regular season interceptions, then picked off his eighth pass of the year during the Gators’ BCS title game win over Oklahoma. Last year as a senior, Black garnered 2nd Team All American honors. Fittingly, Black had two more interceptions in his final collegiate game, including one he took back 80 yards for a touchdown in Florida’s Outback Bowl win over Penn State this past January. For his career, Black had 15 interceptions (including postseason).

So why did Black fall to the fifth round? Well, he’s undersized and lacks the speed you’d ideally like in your last line of defense players in the secondary. Black is just 5’9", yet his 40-yard dash times were in the low 4.8 range. Still, this could be a classic case of teams getting scared off by test results, and losing sight of the fact that the kid has a knack for the ball and a proven track record of making big plays for his team all over the field. Something tells me Bucs fans are going to be thrilled with this selection.

For more commentary and analysis on the pick, as well as the picks still to come in rounds six and seven for Tampa Bay, head on over to Bucs Nation to join the conversation.

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2011 NFL Draft Round 4 Results: Buccaneers Add TE Luke Stocker

We’re just about midway through the third and final day of the 2011 NFL Draft. A short while ago, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers selected in the fourth round, and for the first time in this year’s draft, the Buccaneers turned their attention to the offensive side of the ball. After improving their pass rush with the selections of Adrian Clayborn and Da’Quan Bowers in rounds one and two respectively, the Buccaneers then added tackling machine Mason Foster in the third round.

Finally on Saturday the Bucs looked to upgrade their offensive assets, but not in a way that will turn any heads. Tampa Bay added a pass blocking tight end, Luke Stocker in the fourth round. Stocker, a 6’5" 260 pound TE out of Tennessee, will be a nice compliment to the play-making TE Kellen Winslow. While it may not seem like an area of need, because of how much the Buccaneers like to run two TE sets, the pick of Stocker is actually quite a good one. Then there’s of course the issue of injuries that have plagued Winslow Jr., but assuming the mercurial TE stays healthy, Stocker will still be a nice addition to an offense that’s looking to improve its run blocking.

For more reaction to the selection, head on over to Bucs Nation for more fan discussion and analysis on the pick and the rest of the Buccaneers’ 2011 NFL Draft selections.

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2011 NFL Draft, Third Round: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Select Mason Foster

In the third round of the NFL Draft, the Tampa Bay Bucs have selected linebacker Mason Foster, a former Washington player. Foster is no superstar player at the position, but he’s a great overall athlete and should be a boon to the Bucs’ defense.

Bucs fans seem quite happy with the selection, and Bucs Nation has a writeup on Foster:

The only downside: he’s not the best run stopper, and the Bucs are weakest against the run. He doesn’t do a good job shedding blocks, but does do a great job getting around blocks to get to the ball carrier. He has forced 8 fumbles throughout his career, and he’s a physical tackler. His instincts should make up for some physical deficiencies, and NFL coaching should improve him as well. The one thing that always stands about him is that he’s constantly around the football, and it showed in the statistics as he was the leading tackler in the nation.

This is yet another move by the Bucs to shore up their defense, which was their biggest weakness last season. Combining Foster with Adrian Clayborn and Da’Quan Bowers (not to mention Gerald McCoy from last season) should vastly improve the Bucs’ defensive line going forward.

Keep checking back with SB Nation Tampa Bay for the latest news and analysis surrounding the Bucs’ moves in the NFL Draft.

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2011 NFL Draft, Second Round: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Select Da'Quan Bowers

After taking Adrian Clayborn with the 20th pick of the NFL Draft yesterday, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers once again shore up their depth on defense with the selection of Clemson DE Da'Quan Bowers with the 51st pick in the second round.

The 2010 Nagurski (Best Defensive Player) and Hendricks (Best DE) Award winner was an unstoppable force for the Tigers this year, collecting an NCAA high 15 sacks, and was second in the country with 24 TFL. Bowers was considered as a consensus Top-5 pick at the beginning of the draft process, but injury concerns drove his stock way down. A couple of Mock Drafts had Bowers going to Tampa Bay with the 20th pick yesterday, but his knee injury caused him to slide farther than even the biggest skeptic thought possible.

Bucs Nation seems pretty excited about a young front four that could cause havoc in the NFC South for years to come,

He will upgrade the Bucs defensive line immediately, and the combination of Da'Quan Bowers, Adrian Clayborn, Gerald McCoy and Brian Price could be devastating for opponents. This team now has a lot of talent at defensive end after having very little talent at the position last year.

If his knee injury doesn't flare up while in the Red and Pewter, this could be the steal of the draft.

The first round of the 2011 NFL Draft starts at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, April 28, and SB Nation has everything you need to prepare: NFL mock drafts, draft projections, scouting reports, the full NFL draft schedule and more. Check it out at SB Nation's NFL Draft page and our NFL Draft blog, Mocking the Draft.

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ESPN Mel Kiper Has The Bucs Taking Jah Reid In Second Round Mock Draft

We only got about nine hours of Mel Kiper coverage yesterday, which isn't nearly enough. Luckily, with the second round we get the return of Mel, and more of his speculation. He just came out with his second round Mock Draft at ESPN, and he has the Bucs getting some help along the offensive line in the form of Central Florida tackle Jah Reid.

I think Reid would be a good pick, if of course the Bucs are determined to upgrade their offensive line. I think the other position that the Bucs could address in this second round is cornerback, and there could be a few good ones on the board in this round. With all the trouble surrounding Aqib Talib, I think the Bucs will have to seriously considering taking a corner if there is one that they like available when their pick comes up.

The first round of the 2011 NFL Draft starts at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, April 28, and SB Nation has everything you need to prepare: NFL mock drafts, draft projections, scouting reports, the full NFL draft schedule and more. Check it out at SB Nation's NFL Draft page and our NFL Draft blog, Mocking the Draft.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Bucs Take Clint Boling In Second Round Projection

The first round of the 2011 NFL Mock Draft is in the books, and we can start to focus our attention to Round 2 and beyond. The Bucs addressed their need for defensive end in the first round with Iowa's Adrian Clayborn, now they can look ahead to filling some of their other holes. SB Nation just came out with their latest 2011 NFL Round Two Mock Draft, and they have the Bucs filling a need along the offensive line with Georgia guard Clint Boling. Here is their rationale.

The right side of the offensive line is of mild concern in Tampa Bay, and Boling can help out immediately at either guard or tackle.

Boling is a good prospect whom I have seen taken much higher than this in other projections. I think the Bucs would be very happy to get him here, if they decide that offensive line is the position they need to address with their second round pick.

The first round of the 2011 NFL Draft starts at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, April 28, and SB Nation has everything you need to prepare: NFL mock drafts, draft projections, scouting reports, the full NFL draft schedule and more. Check it out at SB Nation's NFL Draft page and our NFL Draft blog, Mocking the Draft.

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2011 NFL Draft Order

We’re exactly one hour away from the start of the 2011 NFL Draft from Radio City Music Hall in New York City. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers select at No. 20 this year after narrowly missing out on the playoffs a year ago. Let’s take a quick look at the entire first round draft order just as a quick refresher before the festivities begin.

1. Carolina Panthers

2. Denver Broncos

3. Buffalo Bills

4. Cincinnati Bengals

5. Arizona Cardinals

6. Cleveland Browns

7. San Francisco 49ers

8. Tennessee Titans

9. Dallas Cowboys

10. Washington Redskins

11. Houston Texans

12. Minnesota Vikings

13. Detroit Lions

14. St. Louis Rams

15. Miami Dolphins

16. Jacksonville Jaguars

17. New England Patriots (from Oakland Raiders)

18. San Diego Chargers

19. New York Giants

20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

21. Kansas City Chiefs

22. Indianapolis Colts

23. Philadelphia Eagles

24. New Orleans Saints

25. Seattle Seahawks

26. Baltimore Ravens

27. Atlanta Falcons

28. New England Patriots

29. Chicago Bears

30. New York Jets

31. Pittsburgh Steelers

32. Green Bay Packers

The first round of the 2011 NFL Draft starts at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, April 28, and SB Nation has everything you need to prepare: NFL mock drafts, draft projections, scouting reports, the full NFL draft schedule and more. Check it out at SB Nation’s NFL Draft page and our NFL Draft blog, Mocking the Draft.. And finally, stay tuned here and at Bucs Nation for more commentary and reaction to the picks as they are announced this evening.

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Mel Kiper Mock Draft Has Bucs Taking Nebraska CB Prince Amukamara

The 2011 NFL Draft is finally here which means it is Mel Kiper's time to shine. He put out his final 2011 NFL Mock Draft his morning over at ESPN, and he thinks that the Bucs will try to replace Aqib Talib with a player that has fallen down his draft board. He has them taking Nebraska's Prince Amukamara. Here is their rationale.

Given how highly I think of him, I feel bad seeing Amukamara fall this far. But in a need game, there's always a player who falls a bit on draft night. For various obvious reasons, Tampa is now looking very thin at cornerback, and while before I saw the Bucs targeting a defensive end, if Amukamara somehow was still sitting here at No. 20, it'd be a pretty easy pick to make when you combine the need with the value.

The Bucs certainly need a cornerback if they plan to part ways with Aqib Talib as we are expecting. But they also need a defensive end, and I'm not sure they would pass on Da'Quan Bowers if he was still on the board, like he is in Kiper's projection.

The first round of the 2011 NFL Draft starts at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, April 28, and SB Nation has everything you need to prepare: NFL mock drafts, draft projections, scouting reports, the full NFL draft schedule and more. Check it out at SB Nation's NFL Draft page and our NFL Draft blog, Mocking the Draft.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Bucs Land Da'Quan Bowers In Final SB Nation Mock

THE NFL Draft is here, and we can finally get the answer to the question, "Which defensive end will the Bucs take in the first round of the draft?" We've seen almost every first round DE prospect go to the Bucs in various Mocks. SB Nation just came out with the latest edition of their 2011 NFL Mock Draft, and they have the Bucs taking a sliding Da'Quan Bowers. Here is their rationale.

No player's stock has fallen further since January than Bowers'. Tampa's need at end is too strong to justify his sliding further than No. 20.

Bowers was once seen as a very legitimate candidate for the No. 1 overall pick, but concerns over a knee injury have forced him to fall down draft boards. But if he is still on the board when the Bucs pick, and the team is comfortable with the state of his injured knee, then I think he is a no-brainer.

The first round of the 2011 NFL Draft starts at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, April 28, and SB Nation has everything you need to prepare: NFL mock drafts, draft projections, scouting reports, the full NFL draft schedule and more. Check it out at SB Nation's NFL Draft page and our NFL Draft blog, Mocking the Draft.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Ryan Kerrigan To Bucs In Latest SB Nation Mock

It's almost here. After months and months of waiting and endless speculation, the 2011 NFL Draft is very nearly here. The festivities will get started at Radio City Music Hall on Thursday night. In the meantime, we have more of that idle speculation I was just talking about for you. SB Nation just released the latest edition of their 2011 NFL Mock Draft, and they have the Bucs filling their hole at defensive end with Purdue's Ryan Kerrigan. Here is their rationale.

In desperate need of a defensive end, the Bucs will value Kerrigan's intangibles and hustle over Adrian Clayborn with this pick.

Kerrigan is by now means the perfect player for the Bucs at defensive end, but he is probably the Bucs best option at this point. It will be interesting to see what the Bucs will do if they get to this point in the draft and all of the top DE prospects are off the board. But hopefully it doesn't come to that.

The first round of the 2011 NFL Draft starts at 8 p.m. (ET) on Thursday, April 28, and SB Nation has everything you need to prepare: NFL mock drafts, draft projections, scouting reports, the full NFL draft schedule and more. Check it out at SB Nation's NFL Draft page and our NFL Draft blog, Mocking the Draft.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Bucs Will Have Options In The First Round

Kudos to Todd McShay of ESPN. He keeps finding ways to make his Mock Drafts a little bit more interesting than your typical speculation and opinion that comes forth in Mocks. Last week he brought in a few NFL scouts to help him form the first round, and now he presents it a different way. He picks a player that he thinks makes the most sense, but he also presents a few other options that each team might choose to pursue. His options for the Bucs at No. 20 should come at no surprise.

His first option is to take Clemson DE Da'Quan Bowers, who is falling down draft boards a little bit amid concerns over a knee injury. But at this spot, he would be a great value pick for the Bucs. He could develop into the exact type of DE that the team needs.

The second option isn't very different than the first. It's to stay at the No. 20 spot and take another defensive end that could still be on the board like Adrian Clayborn. So basically, the first two options are to take the defensive end they are most comfortable with at No. 20.

The third option still requires them to stay at the No. 20 spot, but to take a cornerback to replace the troubled Aqib Talib. He suggests Colorado's Jimmy Smith, but I'm not sure that he'll still be on the board for them to select. Three options, and I think they are all pretty good ones for the Bucs.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Second Round Potential Picks For Tampa Bay Buccaneers

With just over a week to go until the start of the 2011 NFL Draft, most pigskin loving fans have seen myriad first round mock drafts. If you’re like me, you’re a bit tired of seeing the same names mentioned over and over, and are instead intrigued by the multitude of talented prospects that might be selected in round two or later.

Well, SB Nation just posted its most recent two round mock draft, so let’s take a look at who they think the Bucs might target with the 51st overall pick:

51. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Clint Boling, OT, Georgia. The Bucs need help on the right side, and Boling is a gritty, blue-collar guy that could fit at guard or tackle.

Assuming the Buccaneers land a pass rushing talent in round one, this pick would make a lot of sense for the Buccaneers. Boling, like is mentioned above, is a no-nonsense, reliable and versatile player. He may not ever be the best offensive lineman on the field, but he’ll carry his weight and won’t need years of grooming before being ready to contribute to a young Bucs squad.

Boling was profiled on another SB Nation NFL blog, Behind the Steel Curtain this draft season, and here’s what they had to say about the Georgia product:

Pros: One thing that the Steelers front office will find particularly enticing with regards to Boling is his versatility and experience. He’s a 4-year starter in the tough SEC against top competition and has played both Guard and Tackle positions. He’s also a very smart player with the ability to pick up the blitz. Even though he may lack the lateral agility to play Left Tackle in the NFL he does possess ideal athletic ability to pull and trap from the Guard position. Boling plays with a bit of a nasty streak and with his large frame he has room to put on another 15lbs. to improve his strength. He’s also very durable.

For more coverage leading up to next week’s NFL Draft, check out the latest 2011 NFL Mock Draft at SBNation.com and visit our blog, Mocking The Draft.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Who Will Bucs Take In The First Round?

I think we all know that the Buccaneers need a defensive end more than any other position, and by a fairly wide margin. Based on everything we've been hearing from those who make Mock Drafts around the Internet, and those who are privy to some inside information, that seems to be the direction they will go in the first round of the 2011 NFL Mock Draft.

But before we focus on the defensive ends who might be available to them, let's quickly address the other positions that the Bucs could consider instead. With the Aqib Talib situation, it would make sense for the Bucs to go after a cornerback in the first round; but Mel Kiper has said that the Bucs will not go that route. The Bucs do have some other needs (linebacker, free safety, some offensive line) but based on the prospects that will be available to them in the first round, there likely aren't any that would be good value picks at that spot. It also helps that this draft is particularly deep in defensive lineman. So based on their overwhelming need for the position, and the dearth of good prospects who should be available to them, I think it is safe for us to assume that they will go in that direction. So let's take a look at the first round defensive end prospects who could be available to them.

Cameron Jordan, Cal

There are a few reasons that Jordan probably won't be the pick for the Bucs in the first round. First of all, I think that he will be off the board when they pick. They aren't the only team that needs a defensive end, and he had a great offeseason in terms of raising his value. At this point, I think that he goes somewhere between 10-15; possibly as high as No. 10 to the Redskins.

The other reason that I don't think the Bucs will look at Jordan, even if he is available, is because of fit. They need someone who can generate a lot of sacks from a 4-3 scheme; a pure pass-rusher. Jordan is more a 3-4 defensive end who can do a little bit of everything. He just isn't the kind of defensive end the Bucs need.

Adrian Clayborn, Iowa

Clayborn has a lot of the same issues that Jordan does in terms of fit for the Bucs. He is probably a little bit closer to a 3-4 DE than a 4-3 DE, and so he is not a great fit. Unlike Jordan however, he should be available, so it it will be interesting to see if the rest of these prospects are off the board and Clayborn is the only guy left for the Bucs. I'm not sure they would pass, but I also don't believe he is their first choice.

Da'Quan Bowers, Clemson

Bowers is an interesting prospect for the Bucs. A few months ago he was seen as arguably the best prospect in the entire draft, but a knee injury has caused him to slip. If teams are scared of that injury, he could drop all the way down to the Bucs. He's not the pure pass-rusher the Bucs need, but I think that he would be too good, at a position of need, for the Bucs to pass up if he is still on the board when they pick.

Aldon Smith, Missouri

Aldon Smith might be the dream scenario for the Bucs, but I also don't think he'll be on the board when they pick. He represents so much upside that I believe a team ahead of the Bucs will take him purely based on not wanting to miss out on a prospect who could be as good as Smith. He doesn't have the same kind of production as the other guys on this list, but he could turn out to be much better. I think the Bucs will pull the trigger if Smith is on the baord, but that is a big if.

Ryan Kerrigan, Purdue

Kerrigan brings up the rear on this list because he might be the most plausible player for the Bucs in the first round. He should be on the board when they pick and he is similar to the type of player that the Bucs really need. Our Bucs blog Bucs Nation broke down the DE class recently and they reached the same conclusion.

In the end, I think the Bucs will draft Ryan Kerrigan. He's the most likely to fall to them, and he's the kind of high-effort, high-character players the Bucs (claim to) love.

Mel Kiper currently has Kerrigan as the 26th best player in the class, so it is safe to assume that he will be available. He might also be the only defensive end available for the Bucs. At this point, I expect Ryan Kerrigan to be the pick.

For more coverage leading up to next week's NFL Draft, check out the latest 2011 NFL Mock Draft at SBNation.com and visit our blog, Mocking The Draft.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Will The Bucs Be Able To Get A Defensive End In The First Round?

SB Nation just came out with the latest edition of their 2011 NFL Mock Draft, and they continue to project defensive ends to the Bucs. The defensive end prospect that they have the Bucs taking each week is a little bit of a revolving door, and this week it's Missouri's Aldon Smith. Here is their rationale.

Smith is extremely talented and may be long gone by this point. He'd be a steal here.

I think that if the Bucs have the intention of taking a defensive end in the first round, than Smith is probably the best case scenario for them. he has the talent and athleticism to be the major sack-producer that the Buccaneers really need to put next to the two defensive tackles they took in the Draft last year. But as they point out, there is a pretty good chance that he'll be off the board way before the Bucs have a chance to take him at this spot.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Akeem Ayers To The Bucs In Latest From Todd McShay

Most of the NFL Mock Drafts you will find across the Internet are put together by people who don't really know who the teams will take, just who they feel the teams will take. It's a fun exercise, but it's not really a useful exercise. But the newest mock draft from Todd McShay at ESPN is different. He brings in two actual NFL Scouts to help him make his picks, which makes it feel a little bit more real.

They have the Bucs taking Akeem Ayers, the outside linebacker from UCLA. It's worth noting that all of the defensive ends we have been talking about the Bucs taking for the last few months here are all off the board when the Bucs pick. If they can't get any of those ends, they would do well to take a player like Ayers who could help generate sacks from the outside linebacker position. They'll need to address the need for an end later in the drat, but there is no reason to reach for one in the first round when it isn't a good value pick. Ayers is good value here, and also fills a position of need.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Will The Bucs Add Depth At Cornerback?

Before the whole Aqib Talib situation broke a few weeks ago, the only position that people wanted to Mock to the Buccaneers was defensive end. But now that their future at corner is looking a little bit shaky, people have kind of gravitated towards that position as well. That includes the newest 2011 NFL Mock Draft from the guys over at our Draft website Mocking the Draft. They have the Bucs taking Miami CB Brandon Harris; here is their rationale.

The secondary for the Bucs is a major question mark with the recent off the field issues for Aqib Talib impacting the depth.  Harris has the ablity to contribute early and has a clean off the field history.

The only question mark Harris brings tot he table is his size. He has all the physical tools to play cornerback, but he lacks ideal height to play the position. If they Bucs are comfortable with his ability to play in space in their zone scheme (which is probably his best fit) than he would be a good player for the Bucs. All of that is if, of course, they decide that cornerback is a big need.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Ryan Kerrigan Still Linked To The Bucs

SB Nation just came out with the latest edition of their 2011 NFL Mock Draft, and they have the Buccaneers taking Purdue defensive end Ryan Kerrigan in the first round at No. 20 overall. Here is their rationale.

The Aqib Talib situation has suddenly made cornerback a priority for the Buccaneers, but their biggest need - and thus the smart money in Round 1 - is still at defensive end. Kerrigan is the type of hustle end that will thrive in the Tampa 2.

We've extolled Kerrigan's virtues time and time again. But let's re-hash what makes him a good fit for the Bucs defense. He might not be the most atheltic guy out there, but he works hard and plays within his means. He is strong against the run and does a good job of getting after the quarterback when the opportunity presents itself.

The Bucs need a lot of sacks, and Kerrigan might not be able to offer that. But he is a much more well-rounded prospect than someone who just specializes in rushing the quarterback.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Buccaneers Work Out 8 Former USF Bulls

Picking local talent in the NFL Draft is not nearly as prevalent as it used to be because advancements in technology have allowed greater recognition of prospects from all around the Country. But there is still something to be said for an NFL team taking a local guy that they have had the most opportunity to watch and scout. According to Greg Auman of TampaBay.com, the Bucs held a workout for 8 former members of the USF football team.

(Defensive back Mistral) Raymond went through position drills with the Bucs, as did much of USF's senior class -- receiver Dontavia Bogan, defensive ends Craig Marshall and David Bedford, running back Mo Plancher, tight end Kevin Gidrey, tackle Jake Sims and center Sampson Genus. Raymond said the Bulls were part of a group of about 16 players, including other Tampa area graduates, like Miami linebacker Colin McCarthy, West Virginia receiver Jock Sanders, Central Florida receiver Jamar Newsome and former South Carolina reciever O.J. Murdock.

The Draft is just a couple weeks away and the Bucs are probably starting to crystallize their Draft Board. Big workouts with a handful of prospects will give the team an opportunity to see how prospects stack up when compared to some of the other prospects at their position.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Mel Kiper Says The Bucs Will Not Draft A Cornerback In The First Round

We've been discussing the possibility that the Bucs may want to draft a cornerback in the first round because of Aqib Talib's recent legal troubles and Ronde Barber's continued aging (the nerve of that guy). Well Mel Kiper, ESPN's Mock Draft guru, says the Bucs will not be drafting a cornerback in the first round. Not because they don't need one, but because there won't be one available worth drafting at their position, according to Anwar Richardson of Tampa Bay Online.

"There is no other corner in my opinion that you should take at that point, unless Amukamara drops, and he's not going to go down that far," Kiper said. "If you want to go up and get him, fine."

I'm sure you can guess which position Kiper suggests the Bucs should draft. That's right, defensive end. He suggests Purdue's Ryan Kerrigan, Missouri's Aldon Smith and Iowa's Adrian Clayborn; all names we've been throwing around here in the past few weeks. So basically, Mel Kiper is like us with a fancy haircut and forum.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Will The Bucs Need To Replace Aqib Talib In The Draft?

A few weeks ago, the Buccaneers' biggest draft need was unquestionably defensive end. That might still be the case, but with the recent trouble Aqib Talib has gotten into and Ronde Barber's age, cornerback is starting to become a little bit of a concern as well. Is that a position that the Bucs could target in the first round? Let's take a look at some of the prospects who could be available to them in the first round, and a tidbit from their profile over at Mocking the Draft.

Jimmy Smith, Colorado:

Smith is a two-year starter cornerback on the right side for the Buffaloes. According to the university, Smith only allowed 11 completions while in man coverage during his junior and senior seasons. Those kind of numbers make up for a lack of interceptions (three for his career). Smith has good speed and knows how to use it. Against Hawaii in 2010, Smith chased down a ball carrier who had nearly 20 yards on him. The senior plays best in man coverage but shows good awareness in zone play.

Brandon Harris, Miami:

For good and bad, Harris has skills that cannot be coached. His short area play is great he's incredibly instinctual for a early entrant. The bad trait that can't be helped is his height. Because of his size, some teams may only view Harris as a nickel cornerback in man coverage schemes. Still, he's relentless and remains confident against bigger receivers.

There will be other cornerbacks available to the Bucs as well, but none of them really warrant a selection in the first round. But in the second round, they could target guys like Virginia's Ras-I Dowling and Louisville's Johnny Patrick.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Mel Kiper Gives The Bucs Ryan Kerrigan In latest Mock

Mel Kiper is the biggest name in Mock Draft circles, so when he comes out with a new edition of his Mock, it's a pretty big deal. His newest was just released by ESPN today, and he continues some trends we've being seeing recently for the Bucs.

In the first round, he has the Bucs taking Purdue DE Ryan Kerrigan. Here is his rationale.

Tampa has its solution on the interior, having taken defensive tackles with picks in Rounds 1 and 2 last year, and now it's time to find pass-rush help from the edge. Kerrigan may be a little light to start immediately as an every down 4-3 defensive end. But while offering top-flight pass-rush skills -- he was completely unblockable while leading the country in TFL last year -- Kerrigan is no pushover against the run either.

I think we all know why the Bucs would be interested in taking Kerrigan, or any other DE for that matter; so let's just take a look into the later rounds Kiper projects. In the second, he has them taking a semi-local guy in UCF offensive lineman Jah Reid. In the third, another Florida prospect in Miami ILB Colin McCarthy. To judge these picks, you kind of have to look at who they have available when they make the picks. So check out Kiper's draft (if you have insider of course) and judge for yourself.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Bucs Could Defensive Line With First Two Picks

The NFL Draft is coming up at the end of the month, and the Mock Drafts around the Internet are starting to come a little bit more into focus. The guys at Walter Football are doing  full Mock Draft. I can imagine how exhausting that is, so we're just going to focus on the first two rounds, where they have the Bucs addressing their biggest need.  Because it becomes even more of a guessing game as the draft wears on.

In the first round, they have them taking Georgia defensive end Justin Houston, and they seem to be pretty sure about it.

The Buccaneers are desperate at defensive end. They need two upgrades at the position. They'll probably take the pass-rusher they have highest on their board. Thanks to a very reliable source, I now have reason to believe that Tampa Bay will target Justin Houston in the first round.

Houston might be closer to an outside linebacker than he is a defensive end, but he can still get after the quarterback which would help the pass rush. I'm not sure where he would play, but Houston would be a good fit for the Bucs, even at outside linebacker. In the second round they have the Bucs taking a more traditional defensive lineman in Miami's Allen Bailey.

The Buccaneers double dipped at defensive tackle and wide receiver last April. They could do the same at defensive end in the 2011 NFL Draft considering how much they need help at the position. Tampa likes Allen Bailey enough to have him in the discussion at No. 20. I have to believe he'll be the pick in the second round if he's available.

Bailey has as a ton of talent, but his motor has been questioned. But in the second round, he is probably a risk worth taking.

The Bucs need defensive ends badly, but I don't know if it is bad enough to take them with their first two picks. There might be other players on the board who could help at other positions. But if they really like Bailey that much, they won't hesitate too much before pulling the trigger.

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2011 NFL Draft: Buccaneers Using Agents To Help Form Draft Boards

The 2011 NFL Draft is right around the corner, sort of. Well, it's at least a lot closer now than it was when we started talking about it months ago. As it draws near, our opinions about the prospects who will be available become more crystallized. Which is a similar process to what the teams are going though, but they seem to be getting some help that we as fans are not privy too.

According to Rick Stroud at TampaBay.com the Bucs have been asking the agents who are representing the players to help them form their Draft board.

Tampa Bay's scouting department has been asking individual agents for feedback about where they believe the players they represent will be selected in order to build its mock draft board . . . "It's one of the few different ways we're able to compare our evaluations to others to see if there's much daylight, plus or minus,'' said Bucs communications director Jonathan Grella.

This is an interesting tactic by the Bucs. Assuming the agents are honest with them (kind of a major leap) it could be a good way for the Bucs to bring a draft board together. When you're drafting, it is important to get good value from your picks, meaning not taking a guy too much higher than he should go. Talking to those on the inside is a good way to do that.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Jabaal Sheard To The Bucs In Latest SB Nation Mock

SB Nation just came out with the latest edition of the 2011 NFL Mock Draft, and they have a new name penciled in for the Bucs at No. 20. It's still a defensive end, but now it is Pitt's Jabaal Sheard. Here is their rationale.

A second straight pick with a fringe first-rounder surging safely into the Top 20? Sheard is a vastly underrated prospect, and with all of the top edge rushers off the board, Tampa may feel alright "reaching" on an end that's nearly as enticing as the higher-profile guys.

I think they have the Bucs making this pick because Aldon Smith, J.J. Watt, Ryan Kerrigan and Cameron Jordan are all off the board in this Mock. I haven't heard too much about Sheard, but you can learn more about him at Mocking The Draft. Here is what they have to say about him.

Sheard is going to be a developmental player with a chance to help out on passing situations early.  He is likely looking at the tweener label due to his lack of bulk and limited experience dropping into coverage.  Sheard might be best suited to play the outside linebacker position.  On tape, he showed good quickness, balance, and coordination which make me feel he can make the switch.  However, that switch is going to take some time and coaching.  NFL teams are going to look at Sheard's athleticism and production and fall in love.  I wouldn't be surprised to see him go in the late 2nd round.

All of that sounds good until the very last part. I know the Bucs need a DE in the worst way, but I don't think they would be willing to reach for a guy a full round before he should be picked just to get one. But in terms of the type of player Sheard is, I think that he would be a good fit for the Bucs.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Which Defensive End Will The Bucs Target?

Another day, and another Mock Draft to pass along. Today's edition is from USA Today, which has brought together six of their Mock experts, and put together a very hard to follow spreadsheet-esque Mock tribunal. While they all have differnet opinions, they all think the Bucs will target the same position, and it's one that we've been talking about here for a little while; defensive end.

Missouri's Aldon Smith got four votes, while Iowa's Adrian Clayborn and Purdue's Ryan Kerrigan split the other two. Only one of the drafters who didn't take Aldon Smith still had him on the baord when the Bucs chose him and then chose to pass on him. I include this little nugget of info, because I think of the three guys mentioned, Smith is the best fit for the Bucs.

He could be the kid of guy who comes in and gets a ton of sacks in the Tampa system, which is exactly what they need. Kerrigan and Clayborn are stronger against the run than Smith, but that isn't necessarily what they need from a defensive end, specifically one drafted in the first round. If Smith is on the board, I think he should be the pick. But he is the kind of guy who someone takes earlier than expected because of potential.

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2011 NFL Mock Drafts: Aldon Smith To The Bucs?

Plenty of pundits and fans have the Tampa Bay Buccaneers upgrading along the defensive line in the bevy of mock drafts that have been published in recent weeks. Purdue’s Ryan Kerrigan and Cameron Jordan from Cal have been mentioned regularly as potential first round picks for Tampa Bay. As has Missouri’s Aldon Smith, who Don Banks of SI.com pegged as the Bucs pick at No. 21 in his latest mock draft.

Here’s what Banks had to say about the possibility:

The Bucs are in luck and see one of the draft’s premier pass-rushing prospects make it all the way to their No. 20 slot. Smith is a little raw and might have to start his NFL career as a situational rusher, but anybody who can help turn up the heat in Tampa Bay is the right pick this year for Raheem Morris’s improving team.

If Smith is an unfamiliar name to you, read this scouting report about him on Mocking The Draft.

And for more Bucs coverage, analysis and fan discussion, be sure to check out Bucs Nation, which recently changed editors and is again in full swing.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Will Cameron Jordan Be Available When The Bucs Pick?

Mock Drafts continue to pour in as we get closer and closer to the NFL Draft in April. Evan Silva just posted his latest at Pro Football Talk, and you'll never guess what position he has the Bucs looking at. That's right, defensive end; but it might not be someone you are expecting. He thinks the Bucs will take Cal DE Cameron Jordan. Here is his rationale.

The Bucs have glaring holes at both defensive end positions.  G.M. Mark Dominik will likely target a more natural pass rusher entering the draft, but he can settle for a safe prospect in Jordan after Kerrigan, Bowers, and Aldon Smith go in the teens.  Jordan would start at left end in Week 1.

I have a few problems with this pick. First of all, I think Jordan is far less likely to be there when the Bucs pick then say, Ryan Kerrigan. Jordan had probably the most impressive Senior Bowl and Combine of all the defensive end prospects. I think he goes much earlier than this, possibly as high as tenth to the Redskins.

Secondly, he isn't a good fit for what the Bucs need. He is really more of a 3-4 DE than a 4-3, and while I think he is good enough to work in that scheme, he won't bring the straight-up pass rush that the Bucs really need from their DE. He is a good player, just not a very good fit. And if there is a DE still on the board that is comparable talent and a better fit, as I believe there will be, then I think the Bucs have to go in that direction.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Ryan Kerrigan Still Linked To The Bucs

SB Nation has just come out with their latest edition of the 2011 NFL Mock Draft, and things have not changed for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They still have the Bucs filling their biggest position of need with Purdue defensive end Ryan Kerrigan. Here is their rationale.

He's not the prototypical speed rusher for the Tampa 2 defense, but Kerrigan will fit in anyway - not just because the need is dire, but because his hustle and instincts will make him a great complement to the prototypical speed rusher they eventually land.

Kerrigan is the kind of guy that you can put on the strong side of the line because he is as good against the run as he is at getting to the quarterback. And the Bucs would welcome his motor and tenacity. He might not bring in the sack totals that many people believe that the Bucs need from their defensive end, but he will bring a lot of production, and could make the rest of the defensive line look very good. Like they said, the Bucs would still need a speed rusher opposite him on the defensive line to generate those sacks, but Kerrigan could be part of a very successful defensive line of the future.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Why Ryan Kerrigan Is A Good Fit For The Bucs

I'm running out of creative ways to say that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers need to address their need for a defensive end on the NFL Draft. We all know at this point that their pass-rush was their biggest weakness last year. But we also know that they have a pretty good chance to address that need in the NFL Draft this year.

So far, there have been two defensive ends that the Bucs have been projected to draft in the first round, and it is a little bit of a revolving door. In the latest version of their SB Nation 2011 NFL Mock Draft, they have the Bucs taking Purdue DE Ryan Kerrigan. Here is their rationale.

The Bucs will take any defensive end they can get their hands on; Kerrigan's hustle will make him a nice fit in Raheem Morris' Tampa 2.

The first part of that explanation is the real important part. If Kerrigan is on the board, and Aldon Smith is not, then Kerrigan will be the pick. If Aldon Smith is still on the board and Kerrigan off, then he will be the pick. If they are both gone, then the World might fold up and disappear into a bottomless void, but the Bucs will still find a way to acquire a defensive end during the descent. Whether it is Kerrigan or not, the Bucs will get a DE in the draft this year.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Bucs Still Likely To Take A Defensive End

The NFL has locked out it's players, and I don't think anyone knows what the next season will look like for sure, if there actually is one. But the Draft is still going to happen all the same, and thus, we can still Mock our little hearts out. SB Nation has just come out with their latest 2011 NFL Mock Draft, and they still have the Bucs looking for help on the defensive line.

For the second week in a row, they have the Bucs taking Missouri defensive end Aldon Smith. Here is their rationale.

The Bucs desperately need an end, and here, they'd get to pick between raw upside (Smith) and consistent production (Ryan Kerrigan). Smith seems like a better fit all around for the young, improving and vastly underrated Buccaneers.

We all know that the defensive end is coming when we read Mock Drafts. And at this point in the first round, it seems likely that both of the prospects mentioned will be available. Smith is more upside, and I wouldn't be surprised if some team fell in love with him and took him before the Bucs get a chance to. But if he is available, I think he would be a good pick.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Bucs Continue To Address Need At Defensive End

Maybe we should re-name this particular StoryStream. It's called the "NFL Mock Draft" stream, as if there is a wide variety of players that the Bucs will be targeting with their first round pick. Maybe we should just call it, "Which defensive End will the Bucs take this week?"

We know that is their primary need. Luckily for them, there are a few prospects that should be available to them in the first round that could help them fill it. This week, in their latest addition of the 2011 NFL Mock Draft, SB Nation gives them Aldon Smith from Missouri. Here is their rationale.

No matter how the first round projects each time we shake this up, a defensive end lands here. That's a beautiful thing for the pass rush-needy Bucs, and in this case, they're getting a guy in Smith that could very well be the best of the bunch when it's over with.

Smith is a player that has shot up draft board because of his potential. He doesn't have the production that some of the other players mentioned around this pick have, but he has all the physical tools to develop into a dominant pass rusher. He has excellent size and speed for the position, it is just a matter of whether or not he reaches that potential. If the Bucs choose him, and he is able to reach that potential, they could have a serious steal late in the first round.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Which Defensive End Might The Bucs Select?

The NFL Scouting Combine – a yearly event where the top prospects in the game show off their athletic skills in a series of drills – happened earlier this week, and Monday’s drills involved defensive linebackers and linemen. Since the Buccaneers have a need on their defensive line – specifically at defensive end – it’s likely that one of the players that worked out on Monday will be the Bucs’ first round draft pick.

Our Buccaneers blog Bucs Nation had full coverage of the event, and they highlighted four defensive ends from the Combine for people to keep an eye on: Dontay Moch (Nevada), Sam Acho (Texas), Ryan Kerrigan (Purdue), and Aldon Smith (Missouri).

All four players impressed on Monday, especially Dontay Moch and his 4.44 second 40-yard-dash, but each player also has their issues. Moch is a bit small for a defensive end, Acho’s upside is likely a second-round pick or later, Smith didn’t perform remarkably well (but is still well thought of), and Kerrigan isn’t the most athletic player. Any of these players could develop into a solid defensive end, but the trick is who will be the best and who will be around when the Bucs select at pick #20.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft: Is Ryan Kerrigan A Good Fit For The Bucs?

The NFL Draft is coming at us like a speeding freight train. It's still over a month away, but can't you just feel it bearing down on you? To get ready, SB Nation has been coming out with Mock Drafts every week for the past few months. In their latest 2011 NFL Mock Draft, they have the Bucs selecting Purdue DE Ryan Kerrigan. Here is their rationale.

The Bucs are so desperate for help at defensive end that any prospect with talent would be a consideration here. Kerrigan showed surprising athleticism at the Combine and has the type of motor that will make him a great schematic fit, and fan favorite, in Tampa.

We know that the Bucs need a defensive end ... badly. At this point, it would probably be more surprising if the Bucs didn't take one in the first round. Kerrigan likely improved his draft stock with a solid combine, and solidified his first round stock. Kerrigan would likely be the exact kind of player that the Bucs target - one who can provide sacks but also be productive against the run - with their pick.

The only question is if he has built his stock high enough that he won't be available when the Bucs select. As of right now, Cameron Heyward is the only DE going in the first round after Kerrigan, and he is really a better fit for the 3-4 than he would be for the Bucs. So hopefully, Kerrigan is still on the board.

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2011 NFL Mock Drafts - Bucs To Pick Defensive End

With the twentieth pick in the first round of the 2011 NFL draft, most mock drafts currently suggest your Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be picking a defensive end.

Top defensive ends in the draft coming out include Da'Quan Bowers of Clemson, Cameron Jordan of California, North Carolina's Robert Quinn, Adrian Clayborn from Iowa, Ryan Kerrigan of Purdue, and Cameron Heyward of Ohio State. Others have Pittsburgh's Jabaal Sheard, Allen Bailey of Miami, and Aldon Smith of Missouri among the top prospects as well.

Iowa senior Adrian Clayborn is the DE most often cited as going to the Bucs by analysts.  SB Nation's 2011 NFL mock draft says the Bucs will choose Clayborn, as do the experts from Walter FootballChad Reuter from CBS, and fftoolbox's Randall Weida.

As mentioned, Clayborn is not the only DE out there. According to the Great Blue North Draft Report, the Bucs will get Aldon Smith from Missouri. CBS' Rob Rang says the Buccaneers will pick Cameron Jordan of California. Matt De Lima says the Bucs will convert OLB Akeem Ayers of UCLA to defensive end.

But at least two prognosticators say first round worthy ends will be gone by pick #20, and the Buccaneers will get more value there with Mississippi State offensive tackle Derek Sherrod.

 To keep up with the latest on draft news, check out Mocking the Draft, and for all Buccaneers all the time, surf over to Bucs Nation.

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2011 NFL Mock Draft - Tampa Bay Picks 20th In First Round

Mock drafts are funny things. Fans know what their team needs, and we can make an educated guess as to which team will pick which player. If only it were that cut-n-dry.

Trouble starts when teams have glaring needs in several positions. We think we know what our team’s biggest need is, but the front office might have a different opinion.

But even if we correctly guess which position to fill in the first round, it’s not always easy to determine the best player to fill that position.

Just look at the 2010 Buccaneers for example. The rookie wide receiver with the most yards and most touchdowns this year is our very own Mike Williams. Williams was projected to be picked as late as the sixth round last year, and the Bucs grabbed him in the 4th round, after 13 other recievers were taken.

Meanwhile, LeGarrette Blount had the best numbers of all rookie running backs this year, and he did not get drafted at all.

Having said all that, it is fun to look into a crystal ball, and try to figure out where our favorite team will go.

Some draft analysts suggest the Bucs will go with an offensive tackle. Others say the old Buccaroos will go with an outside linebacker in the first round.

Your Tampa Bay Buccaneers need to upgrade the defensive line. We agree with most who say a good first-round defensive end will help shore it up.

Would you target that position first? And if so, then what?

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Buccaneers 2011 NFL Draft: Bucs Pick Number 20

2011 NFL Draft Order

With the 2010 season over for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, we look toward the 2011 draft to find out where the Buccaneers fit, and who might fit in with them.

For the twenty non-playoff teams such as the Bucs, the 2011 draft order has already been determined.  The worst team in 2010 -- the Carolina Panthers -- had only two wins all season, and will get the first pick in the draft.  The Broncos, Bills, and Bengals will follow them, each with four wins.  The Cards and Browns won five games each and round out the top (bottom) six.

As the best non-playoff team this past season, you may notice that your Buccaneers get the 20th pick this year, right in front of the Giants, who also won ten games.  Here is the complete draft order for non-playoff teams:

1. Carolina Panthers (2-14)
2. Denver Broncos (4-12)
3. Buffalo Bills (4-12)
4. Cincinnati Bengals (4-12)
5. Arizona Cardinals (5-11)
6. Cleveland Browns (5-11)
7. San Francisco 49ers (6-10)
8. Tennessee Titans (6-10)
9. Dallas Cowboys (6-10)
10. Washington Redskins (6-10)
11. Houston Texans (6-10)
12. Minnesota Vikings (6-10)
13. Detroit Lions (6-10)
14. Miami Dolphins (7-9)
15. St. Louis Rams (7-9)
16. Jacksonville Jaguars (8-8)
17. Oakland Raiders (8-8)
18. San Diego Chargers (9-7)
19. New York Giants (10-6)
20. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (10-6)

Going by current record, the playoff teams will pick as follows:

21. Seattle Seahawks (7-9)*
22. Indianapolis Colts (10-6)*
23. Green Bay Packers (10-6)*
24. Kansas City Chiefs (10-6)*
25. Philadelphia Eagles (10-6)*
26. New York Jets (11-5)*
27. New Orleans Saints (11-5)*
28. Chicago Bears (11-5)*
29. Baltimore Ravens (12-4)*
30. Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4)*
31. Atlanta Falcons (13-3)*
32. New England Patriots (14-2)*

Of course, those last dozen are likely to change somewhat, based on results in the 2010 playoffs.

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