Breakout Bucs, Players On The Bubble, And Predictions

Bucs followers, the following version of SR’s Fab 5 will put up on July 15. There won’t be an SR’s Fab 5 column on Friday, July 8 as a consequence of my trip. Have a protected and joyful Independence Day on July 4!

SR’s Fab 5 is a set of reporting and evaluation on the Bucs from yours actually, Pewter Report’s Scott Reynolds. Listed here are 4 issues that caught my consideration this week, plus some random tidbits in my Buc Pictures part on the finish. Take pleasure in!

FAB 1. 5 Breakout Bucs

This week’s version of SR’s Fab 5 is comprised of 4 Prime 5 lists that hit on some totally different matters this summer season. The primary is an inventory of 5 Bucs gamers that would/ought to have breakout seasons in Tampa Bay this yr.

CB Jamel Dean

Dean made big strides in his third season with the Bucs. He beat out Sean Murphy-Bunting for the beginning exterior cornerback position. In reality, he had the best Professional Soccer Focus grade of any Tampa Bay cornerback final yr. Dean had a 71.8 total grade and a 74.7 protection grade. These numbers had been higher than Carlton Davis III (71.6 and 73.8), who simply obtained paid $13.4 million per season. Dean was PFF’s Twentieth-rated cornerback final yr. Davis was ranked twenty first.

There’s no cause why Dean can’t lead the staff in interceptions in 2022. He’s in a contract yr and has spent the offseason engaged on his arms. If he will get 4 or extra picks this season and continues to be pretty much as good as – if not higher than – Davis, then Dean would possibly make what Davis makes – or extra. If Dean can rise to Davis’ stage and keep there with a long-term contract extension, the Bucs can have a duo of lethal exterior cornerbacks for years to come back.

S Mike Edwards

Bucs S Mike Edwards – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

Edwards has 5 interceptions, together with two pick-sixes, a pressured fumble and a fumble restoration during the last two seasons as a backup. To place that in perspective, Carlton Davis III, a beginning cornerback, has 5 INTs during the last two years together with a fumble restoration. Cornerbacks Jamel Dean and Sean Murphy-Bunting have 4 interceptions mixed during the last two common seasons. Edwards is a ballhawk – an enormous play ready to occur.

The Bucs consider extra enjoying time will result in extra massive performs from Edwards this season as he enters a contract yr. However first, he’ll need to show he can do extra than simply cowl receivers and tight ends and choose off passes. Edwards should present he can provide assist in opposition to the run and be an efficient tackler. He doesn’t need to be as bodily as Jordan Whitehead was. But when Edwards isn’t bodily sufficient, Keanu Neal shall be ready within the wings to steal some snaps – or the beginning job. The guess right here is that Edwards makes sufficient splash performs to remain on the sphere.

OLB Joe Tryon-Shoyinka

Is Tryon-Shoyinka prepared to start out? We’re about to search out out. He noticed motion in each sport final yr, with a handful of begins. With Jason Pierre-Paul gone, the Bucs’ 2021 first-round choose will step in to exchange him. However being a starter is one factor. Being a breakout Buccaneer is one other. Can Tryon-Shoyinka have a breakout season – maybe a double-digit sack season?

He’s actually able to it from an athletic standpoint. JTS had 4 sacks as a rookie and was in shut vary for one more 4 sacks or so and simply missed. A double-digit sack season would definitely point out a breakout season. However so would an eight-sack season in his second yr within the NFL – and his first as a full-time starter. Odds are extra probably that occurs. JTS advantages from all the eye Shaq Barrett will get and notches eight sacks – or extra.

DT Logan Corridor

Bucs DT Logan Hall

Bucs DT Logan Corridor – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

Corridor, the staff’s second-round choose, has gotten an terrible lot of pre-camp hype about his athletic instruments. Let’s see if he lives as much as that reward when the pads come on. The strain for Corridor to excel as a rookie was lessened with the Akiem Hicks signing. That ought to enable him to play freer in his first yr in Tampa Bay. His six-sack objective for his rookie season is a daring one, however needs to be doable if Corridor is pretty much as good as Warren Sapp, Will Gholston and others say he’s.

With some nice veterans to study from in Hicks, Gholston, Rakeem Nunez-Rochez and Professional Bowler Vita Vea, Corridor ought to have some quick success. Whether or not that comes within the type of three sacks or six sacks (or extra) shall be identified come December. There’s no cause why Corridor can’t be the most efficient rookie defensive sort out within the league this yr.

RB Rachaad White

There’s simply one thing about this man. Not precisely positive what it’s. Perhaps it’s his confidence. Or perhaps it’s simply White’s easy capacity to run and catch the ball as an all-purpose again. Like all rookies, he hasn’t performed a down within the NFL but. However White has the athleticism that will make some query why he was a third-round choose a couple of years down the street.

With Leonard Fournette re-signing for $7 million per yr, White isn’t going to get a whole lot of enjoying time. However him taking advantage of it’s what is going to matter. Fournette gained’t get 250 carries this yr. He solely had 180 final yr. Ronald Jones II ran the ball 101 instances, whereas Ke’Shawn Vaughn carried the ball 36 instances. There shall be loads of carries (and catches) for White if he can surpass Vaughn on the depth chart. Right here’s betting that occurs.

FAB 2. 5 Bucs On The Bubble

The subsequent Prime 5 checklist is made up of 5 Buccaneers which might be on the bubble heading into the 2022 common season. These Tampa Bay gamers really want an ideal coaching camp and preseason to safe a spot on the 53-man roster this yr.

WR Tyler Johnson

Bucs WR Tyler Johnson

Bucs WR Tyler Johnson – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

Johnson was a disappointment final yr, arriving to coaching camp out of practice and drawing the ire of former Bucs head coach Bruce Arians because of this. Whereas he finally obtained in form for the common season, he disenchanted. After catching 12 passes for 169 yards (14.1 avg.) and a pair of touchdowns as a rookie, Johnson caught 36 passes for 360 yards final yr. However he solely averaged a pedestrian 10 yards per catch, and he didn’t produce any touchdowns.

Johnson’s lack of separation as a consequence of common velocity was obvious all through the season. He additionally underwhelmed as a blocker within the slot when he changed Chris Godwin down the stretch. Johnson has had a pleasant offseason, starring within the OTAs. However he’ll need to be extra bodily when the pads come on in camp, and he’ll must play sooner this yr. The competitors is fierce at extensive receiver, with 10 gamers competing for basically three roster spots behind Godwin, Mike Evans and Russell Gage. Johnson shouldn’t be a lock to make the staff.

WR Scotty Miller

Like Johnson, Miller is a veteran whose roster spot shouldn’t be assured this season. After having a breakout season in 2020, the speedy receiver suffered a critical toe harm in Week 3 that saved him out for many of the yr. When Miller returned to motion late within the season, he made extra of an influence as a fill-in particular groups gunner and on end-arounds than he did as a receiver. Miller solely caught 5 passes for 38 yards in 2021.

Due to his 5-foot-9, 170-pound body, Miller isn’t featured on particular groups. And that may harm his possibilities of making the staff. His greatest guess may be to problem Jaelon Darden for the return specialist position to make the 53-man roster. Miller practices fielding punts in apply, however by no means will get a shot to do it in video games. Getting into a contract yr, he must have the camp and preseason of his life to make the staff. He wants to remain wholesome and constantly flash the velocity that made him a deep menace in 2020. Darden and electrical rookie Deven Thompkins look like essentially the most direct competitors for Miller in August.

OL Nick Leverett

Bucs G Nick Leverett

Bucs G Nick Leverett – Photograph courtesy of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Leverett’s versatility aided him in making the 53-man roster final yr. He spent final preseason seeing time at left sort out and middle, and noticed his first common season motion at left guard in a win at Indianapolis. Will that be sufficient this yr, or will the competitors the Bucs added this offseason push the Rice product off the roster? Tampa Bay drafted guard Luke Goedeke within the second spherical and signed veteran sort out Fred Johnson.

Leverett doesn’t appear to be within the combine for the beginning left guard place, as Aaron Stinnie, Robert Hainsey and Goedeke obtained the reps there within the OTAs and mini-camp. Leverett was oftentimes a backup at proper guard. It’s a numbers sport alongside the O-line, and it’d take Tampa Bay holding 10 linemen for Leverett to make it. Stinnie, Goedeke, Hainsey, who’s the staff’s backup middle, Tristan Wirfs, Ryan Jensen, Shaq Mason and Donovan Smith are locks. Johnson and Josh Wells are more likely to make the staff as backup tackles. Leverett would then declare the tenth and remaining roster spot. If the Bucs solely preserve 9 linemen, Leverett may very well be the odd man out.

DT Deadrin Senat

The Bucs added three defensive tackles this offseason, together with rookie Logan Corridor and a pair of veterans in Akiem Hicks and Senat. Corridor and Hicks are locks to make the staff, however Senat, a five-year veteran, shouldn’t be. At 6-foot, 305 kilos, Senat is the smallest of Tampa Bay’s defensive lineman – by far. The previous Falcons third-round choose might be pigeonholed to play nostril sort out, and Tampa Bay already has a succesful reserve in Rakeem Nunez-Roches.

The Bucs usually preserve six defensive linemen for the 3-4 protection. Hicks, Corridor, Nunez-Roches, Professional Bowler Vita Vea, Will Gholston and particular groups ace Patrick O’Connor will probably comprise the six. If the undersized Senat goes to make the roster, he’ll need to beat out O’Connor for the sixth and remaining spot. And that will harm the Bucs’ particular groups. It’s arduous to see Senat making the 53-man roster except there’s an harm. A spot on the apply squad appears extra probably.

Okay Ryan Succop

Bucs K Ryan Succop

Bucs Okay Ryan Succop – Photograph by: USA As we speak

Succop didn’t kick in any respect in any of the staff portion of the OTAs or mini-camp that the media noticed. Was that as a consequence of harm or did the Bucs simply wish to get an prolonged pre-camp have a look at kicker Jose Borregales? Sadly, we didn’t discover out. Succop, who turns 36 in September, gained’t be kicking perpetually. And his age and prior harm historical past have restricted his vary. He’s solely tried 4 kicks of fifty yards or extra within the final two years and is 2-of-5, together with the postseason.

Borregales, a former Lou Groza Award winner out of Miami, spent final yr on the apply squad. He’s obtained a booming leg able to driving the ball from past 50. Borregales was 6-of-8 on long-distance kicks from 50 yards or longer in school. If Borregales’ accuracy improves in coaching camp and the preseason, it may put Succop’s job in jeopardy. Succop wants to remain wholesome and stay correct in camp. He must show that his leg shouldn’t be in decline as approaches his thirty sixth birthday.

FAB 3. 5 Predictions For The Bucs 2022 Season

Listed here are 5 predictions for 2022 that not solely embody particular person Bucs participant performances, but in addition efficiency by the staff as an entire.

Bucs Protection Reaches 50 Sacks

Todd Bowles’ protection has come near producing 50 sacks during the last three seasons in Tampa Bay. The Bucs notched 47 sacks in Bowles’ first season in 2019, then improved to 48 in the course of the Tremendous Bowl season in 2020. Final season noticed the protection revert again to 47. However the unit narrowly missed a bunch of sacks and will have completed with over 50. This yr needs to be the yr the place Tampa Bay reaches 50 sacks (or extra) for simply the second time in franchise historical past.

The franchise file for many sacks in a season was 55, set in 2000. That yr, Warren Sapp had 16.5 sacks – half a sack behind league-leader La’Roi Glover. Professional Bowl exterior linebacker Shaq Barrett will probably cleared the path once more. Staying wholesome within the secondary shall be key, as Bowles was pressured to play sure coverages final yr as a consequence of accidents within the defensive backfield. Whereas the Bucs nonetheless led the league in blitzing, Bowles couldn’t blitz as a lot as he needed to because of this.

Bucs Produce A Trio Of 1,000-Yard WRs

Bucs WRs Chris Godwin and Mike Evans

Bucs WRs Chris Godwin and Mike Evans – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

Tampa Bay has had a pair of 1,000-yard receivers in the identical season a few instances in franchise historical past. However the Bucs have by no means produced three 1,000-yard receivers. In reality, it’s solely been accomplished 5 instances in NFL historical past. The primary was the San Diego trio of John Jefferson, Kellen Winslow and Charlie Joiner in 1980. Arizona, with Larry Fitzgerald, Anquan Boldin and Steve Breaston, was the final NFL staff to have a trio of 1,000-yard receivers. The Bucs had been on their method to doing it final yr earlier than an harm and suspension obtained Antonio Brown off monitor in October.

Mike Evans and Chris Godwin each completed with 1,000 yards final yr. The numbers Brown (545) and Tyler Johnson (360) produced mixed for over 900 yards. With Rob Gronkowski retiring, the Bucs will probably throw extra to the receivers than the tight ends in 2022. That ought to give newcomer Russell Gage an opportunity to hit 1,000 yards, too. Gage has come near hitting 1,000 yards the final two years in Atlanta, ending with almost 800 yards receiving in every season.

RB Leonard Fournette Rushes For 1,000 Yards

The Bucs haven’t had a 1,000-yard rusher since Doug Martin in 2014. Ronald Jones II got here shut in 2020 with a team-high 978 yards. This yr, Fournette appears poised to hit 1,000 yards if he can keep wholesome. The Bucs have 7 million causes to get Fournette the ball after paying him a king’s ransom this offseason. He ran the ball 180 instances for 812 yards (4.5 avg.) final yr, and he missed three and half video games.

Had he performed in all 17 video games, Fournette probably would have hit 1,000 yards in 2021. He wanted simply 42 extra carries averaging 4.5 yards per carry to succeed in that mark. Fournette solely had two 100-yard video games final yr, with simply three video games with 80 yards or extra. He had 4 video games with 17 carries or extra and 7 video games with 11 carries or much less. If these numbers flip and Fournette winds up with 220 carries in 2022, a 1,000-yard speeding season is all however assured.

TE Rob Gronkowski Returns – At Some Level

Bucs TE Rob Gronkowski and QB Tom Brady

Bucs TE Rob Gronkowski and QB Tom Brady – Photograph by: USA As we speak

I believed Gronkowski was going to re-sign with the Bucs previous to coaching camp. And I used to be incorrect. As an alternative, he retired on June 21. Maybe he desires to tug a veteran transfer and simply skip camp. Will Gronk be again previous to the beginning of the common season in September? Or is the longer term Corridor of Famer merely listening to his physique and listening to that it might probably’t maintain up for 17 video games?

Perhaps Gronk comes aboard at midseason to assist the Bucs win a Tremendous Bowl like Antonio Brown did in 2020. Former NFL govt Mike Tannenbaum believes the 33-year outdated Gronkowski will return in some unspecified time in the future within the 2022 season. In reality, he put the possibilities at 100%. It’s arduous to consider that Gronk would miss out on what may very well be Tom Brady’s remaining season in Tampa Bay – and maybe the NFL.

Bucs Win Fewer Video games In 2022

Tampa Bay went 11-5 in 2020 and gained the Tremendous Bowl. Final yr, regardless of a rash of accidents, the Bucs set a brand new franchise file with a 13-4 file but misplaced within the NFC Divisional spherical of the playoffs. Tampa Bay was even poised to host the NFC Championship Recreation if the Bucs had gotten previous the Rams.

Tampa Bay has a brutally robust schedule this season, that includes eight groups in opposition to groups that made the playoffs a yr in the past. Don’t be stunned if the Bucs end 11-6 or 12-5 this yr however are a greater staff that goes additional within the postseason. After all, Tampa Bay would possibly advance to the Tremendous Bowl profitable 13 video games once more (or extra). However even with a lesser common season file, the 2022 Bucs may be extra formidable come January.

FAB 4. 5 Largest Positional Wants For The Bucs In 2023

Whereas there’s a whole lot of anticipation in regards to the upcoming 2022 season, there’s a whole lot of uncertainty about 2023 in Tampa Bay. Right here’s a have a look at the Prime 5 positional wants for the Bucs subsequent yr.


Bucs QBs Kyle Trask and Blaine Gabbert

Bucs QBs Kyle Trask and Blaine Gabbert – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

All indicators level towards the 2022 season being Tom Brady’s final in Tampa Bay, and maybe the NFL. Is Blaine Gabbert or Kyle Trask able to take over as a starter subsequent yr? Will one preseason put together Trask sufficient to be an NFL starter? Will Gabbert, who shall be 33 subsequent yr, even be re-signed in 2022? It takes a star quarterback to get a staff to the Tremendous Bowl and win it within the modern-day NFL, which places an emphasis on the passing sport.

It’s arduous to counsel that Gabbert or Trask have star potential at this stage. Outdoors of Lamar Jackson, who will probably be again in Baltimore, the checklist of free agent QBs subsequent yr isn’t too thrilling – assuming Brady retires. Sam Darnold, Daniel Jones, Jimmy Garoppolo, Baker Mayfield and Taylor Heinicke are the “headliners.” May the Bucs draft one other QB within the first spherical subsequent yr to compete for the job, or may Tampa Bay maybe commerce for one? It will likely be fascinating to see how Jason Licht and Todd Bowles handle the QB place in 2023.

Inside Linebacker

Devin White shall be coming into a contract yr in 2023 and the contract for Lavonte David, who turns 33 in January, shall be expired on the finish of this season. Will David return for one more yr or will the Bucs transfer on? Who will substitute the Bucs legend in 2023 if Tampa Bay goes in a special route? Will White step up and earn a contract extension? There are a whole lot of questions and never many obvious solutions proper now.

The within linebacker spots – Mike and Mo – are important to Todd Bowles’ protection. White and David are staff captains, and the Mike LB runs the protection. The Bucs are hoping Okay.J. Britt would possibly be capable to grow to be a job as a starter. However he’s not almost as athletic as both White or David. The 2023 linebacker draft class has a couple of studs, however it’s not deep. Clemson’s Trenton Simpson is a reputation to look at. He has particular velocity and appears like a Bowles linebacker. Discovering a particular, starting-caliber linebacker subsequent yr is a precedence.


Bucs CBs Sean Murphy-Bunting and Jamel Dean

Bucs CBs Sean Murphy-Bunting and Jamel Dean – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

Starters Jamel Dean and Sean Murphy-Bunting are within the remaining yr of their rookie contracts. From a wage cap standpoint, it’s probably that just one returns in 2023. The early favourite is Dean, who actually made strides in protection final yr. Murphy-Bunting has the flexibility to play each inside on the slot cornerback place in addition to exterior. Throw in the truth that reserves Ross Cockrell, Rashard Robinson and Dee Delaney (unique rights free agent) are in contract years and the Bucs may immediately be skinny at cornerback in 2023.

Bowles isn’t afraid t0 play rookie cornerbacks. He did that in 2019 with each Murphy-Bunting and Dean. So, if the Bucs need to draft a cornerback within the first or second spherical to step in in case the staff strikes on – so be it. Tampa Bay likes the promise and potential of Zyon McCollum, a Day 3 draft choose. Nevertheless it’s an enormous leap from Sam Houston to the NFL, and McCollum may not be prepared to start out and function a alternative for Dean or Murphy-Bunting in 2023.


Mike Edwards is the main candidate to exchange Jordan Whitehead at sturdy security this yr. He’s coming into a contract yr, and newcomers Logan Ryan and Keanu Neal had been solely signed to one-year offers. Which means half of the staff’s safeties may very well be gone subsequent season. The guess right here is that both Edwards or Neal returns in 2023. However depth will nonetheless be a problem for Tampa Bay and can should be addressed both within the draft or free company.

The Bucs have at all times prioritized the protection place. Bucs common supervisor Jason Licht has spent two second-round picks on Professional Bowler Antoine Winfield Jr. (2020) and former Buc Justin Evans (2017), whereas Edwards was a third-rounder in 2019. Licht and Bowles, who performed security in school and within the NFL, almost drafted Georgia security Lewis Cine within the first spherical this previous April. Safeties play an important position in Bowles’ protection, and the place is a crucial one total in at the moment’s pass-happy NFL.

Outdoors Linebacker

Bucs OLB Anthony Nelson

Bucs OLB Anthony Nelson – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

The Bucs re-signed Professional Bowler Shaq Barrett to a long-term contract extension in 2021 after which drafted Joe Tryon-Shoyinka within the first spherical to finally substitute Jason Pierre-Paul. Barrett and Tryon-Shoyinka ought to make a dynamic duo on the sting. However prime reserve Anthony Nelson is in a contract yr and the cabinet is moderately naked afterwards. Cam Gill has confirmed to be nothing greater than a situational cross rusher and isn’t a lock to make the staff. The identical may very well be stated for Elijah Ponder, who was on the apply squad final yr.

Throw in the truth that Barrett turns 30 this fall and Tampa Bay will want extra depth, and an eventual successor for him. Edge rushers are an necessary a part of Bowles’ protection as they’re those primarily answerable for attending to the quarterback. The Bucs are one harm away from common – or beneath common – on the place. Even when Nelson is re-signed to a modest deal as a reserve in 2023, including one other pass-rushing exterior linebacker within the draft makes loads of sense.

FAB 5. SR’s Buc Pictures

• WHITE COMPARES FAVORABLY TO A PRO BOWLER: Bucs rookie working again Rachaad White is extraordinarily athletic. Simply how athletic? Properly, he’s drawn comparisons to 49ers Professional Bowl receiver Deebo Samuel, for starters.

• MORE ON BRADY’S RED ZONE MAGIC: Tom Brady’s purple zone passing mastery was mentioned in final week’s SR’s Fab 5 column. Nevertheless it’s not nearly him throwing touchdowns and avoiding interceptions. It’s about Brady getting his staff ultimately zone. No QB has accomplished it higher – or extra usually.

Bucs RB Rachaad White

Bucs RB Rachaad White – Photograph by: Cliff Welch/PR

• BUCS RB WHITE JOINS THE PEWTER REPORT PODCAST NEXT WEEK: Bucs rookie working again Rachaad White would be the visitor on the Pewter Report Podcast on Tuesday, July 5 at 4:00 p.m. ET. Don’t miss this episode, as we’ll speak to White about his expectations for his rookie season in Tampa Bay.


• SUMMER BUCS TALK ON THE PEWTER REPORT PODCAST: The Pewter Report Podcast is energized by CELSIUS and broadcasts 4 reside episodes every week. Pewter Report Podcasts usually air on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at 4:00 pm EST within the offseason.

Matt Matera and Kasey Hudson focus on whether or not the Bucs are nonetheless prime contenders within the NFC with out Rob Gronkowski.

Matera and Josh Queipo discuss which new Bucs addition will make the most important influence in 2022.

Matera and Hudson focus on Bucs over/unders on the offensive facet of the ball in 2022.

Matera and JC Allen are joined by Mr. Bucs Nation on Thursday to debate the defensive over/unders.

celsiusWatch the Pewter Report Podcasts reside on our PewterReportTV channel on and please subscribe (it’s free) and add your feedback. We archive all Pewter Report Podcasts. So, you possibly can watch the recorded episodes for those who missed them reside.

There isn’t any higher time to take heed to or watch a brand new Pewter Report Podcast – energized by CELSIUS – than Friday afternoon on the best way house from work. Or early Saturday morning throughout your exercise or whereas working errands.

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• GET READY FOR WHITE: Are you able to see new Bucs working again Rachaad White in motion? Right here’s a glimpse of what you possibly can count on from his senior season at Arizona State.