A lot of people questioned the decision the Buccaneers made last May to spend their first pick in the 2016 NFL Draft on undersized corner Vernon Hargreaves III.
A lot less are questioning that call now.
After being a day one starter last season, Hargreaves on Tuesday became only the third Bucs defensive back in the last 20 years to earn a spot on the Pro Football Writer’s Association’s All-Rookie team.
Hargreaves recorded 76 tackles, the fourth most on the team overall, three tackles for loss, nine pass breakups, one interception and a forced fumble in those 16 games.
The nine pass breakups were the most for a Bucs rookie defensive back since Mark Barron had 10 in 2012 and the most for a Bucs rookie corner since E.J. Biggers had 11 in 2010.
The nine pass breakups also tied Hargreaves for the seventh most among NFL rookies this year, so it’s hard to argue that the Bucs made the wrong call in fortifying their secondary.
Hargreaves joined Barron (2012) and former Bucs cornerback Donnie Abraham on that list after becoming only the fifth rookie defensive back in Bucs history to play in all 16 games.