We are almost three weeks from the 2017 NFL Draft commencing in North Texas and the buzz will build into reality. And in general terms, you can’t read too much into the obvious. Like for example, when players are being brought into to visit teams at their facilities.
In a lot of cases, franchises are using their 30 allotted “facility visits,” because they’re doing their diligence but they are also cloaking their intentions of what they are really doing.
So we get to the news of Wednesday of the Bucs and them welcoming Florida State safety Derwin James to Tampa.
Florida State S Derwin James is visiting the #Bucs today.
— Josh Norris (@JoshNorris) April 4, 2018
Obviously, with state school ties and the fact that the Buccaneers picking seventh could use a play making safety, there is speculation about his visit. We have written previously that James appears to have solidified that he will be a top 15, if not a top 10 picking coming up.
Now, it should be noted that the Buccaneers have already re-signed veteran safeties Chris Conte and Keith Tandy. And, a year ago, they took safety Justin Evans out of Texas A&M in the second round. Evans moved into the starting lineup early in the season and turned out to have a productive rookie year. He finished with nine starts 63 tackles and three interceptions.
Back to James. He is a dynamic play maker, who many believed when his career began at FSU would be destined to be a top five pick. He did have “micro-fracture” knee surgery in 2016, which robbed him of all but two games that year. However, in 2017 he appeared to be fully recovered, but the Noles had a poor season by their standards.
Obviously, the Bucs have Seminole connections with Hall of Fame LB Derrick Brooks and of course, former #1 overall pick QB Jameis Winston hailing from Florida State, too.
So, was it just diligence and a combo of “disinformation” being put out there by Tampa Bay to bring James in or are they generally interested?
We won’t really know until the night of April the 26th, when the real fun begins.
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