Bucs MLB Mason Foster is likely to leave the Bucs once free agency starts in March. The Bucs tried different combinations at middle linebacker during the 2014 season, but still could be on the hunt for someone new to man the middle of their defense.
Miami LB Denzel Perryman is among the top middle linebackers in this draft class. The hard hitting Perryman has some concerns when it comes to coverage, but he has apparently gained some fans in the scouting community.
"I have a little higher grade on Perryman than I probably should, but we like thumpers and badasses inside, and he's both," one AFC Director of Scouting told NFL.com.
An AFC regional scout added, "He's the type of guy you like having on your team because he brings toughness to practice."
I have said repeatedly that the Bucs lack an emotional leader in the middle of their defense. They need a player that brings it all together. The Bucs need their new Hardy Nickerson.
Could Perryman be that player for them if he lasts to their pick at the top of round 2?
Would the Bucs bypass other needs to grab a linebacker that early in the draft?
Despite my opinion that the Bucs need a physical presence in the middle of their defense, I feel they will look to bring in a middle linebacker that is more athletic than Perryman to be able to cover the deep middle of the field. Michigan State's Taiwan Jones, Clemson's Stephone Anthony, and USC's Hayes Pullard are options later in the draft.
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