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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs double up on defensive backs in second round Friday night

Jamil King



Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers had a need at defensive back and boy, did they address it on Friday night at the NFL Draft. That’s when they selected M.J. Stewart of North Carolina with the 53rd pick and then, Auburn’s Carlton Davis at the 63rd position.

With an aging Brent Grimes re-signed for another year, and with former #1 pick in 2016 Vernon Hargreaves having what we will kindly describe as, a disappointing career so far, Tampa Bay is speaking loudly with these picks.

Stewart (above) is very physical in both his coverage and his run support. He has the ability to move to safety if needed. He was ranked both as a top-40 corner and safety nationally coming out of high school in Virginia Beach. He was first team All ACC as s junior, and  has the ability to cover inside and outside and can be a versatile piece for the Bucs.

After passing on Derwin James in the first round, they decided to address the need with their second of there second round picks. There is a blemish on Stewart’s record. As the NFL Network reported, he was a part of the altercation that led to UCFs Mike Hughes leaving the program three years ago.

Stewart will  look to gain playing time from day one either at corner, safety, or again, a mix of both.

The Bucs then traded their next second round pick to New England, who took a corner themselves with Florida’s Duke Dawson. Then, with the newly gained 63rd Pick, the Bucs selected Carlton Davis from Auburn. A long press corner out of an SEC school gives the Bucs a different look to what is currently in-house.

Davis Combo of height at 6’1 and speed at 4.5 in the forty can make him a good matchup against  opposing big WRs.

Davis was a first-team All-SEC pick in 2017, starting 13 games, making 36 stops, intercepting one pass, and leading the Tigers with 11 pass breakups. In a division that keeps adding weapons at receiver, the Bucs added two players to combat that of their rivals.

Jamil King is a young draft pick working his way up the depth chart on the F.F.I. roster, who enjoys watching and writing about all of Florida’s football teams.

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