As the players start to arrive in Indianapolis for the combine, we start we the biggest of the group. The Offensive Linemen will obviously be a target for the Buccaneers at the combine. We have already reported that the Bucs have met with Missouri's Mitch Morse, Penn State's Donovan Smith, and FSU's Tre Jackson. With big needs along their line, the Bucs should benefit from the offensive linemen, tackles in particular, being one of the deepest positions in the draft.
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Last year, the Bucs drafted Austin Seferian-Jenkins in the 2nd round. ASJ dealt with injuries most of the season. The Bucs also have Brandon Myers on the roster, and could still bring back Luke Stocker. While it doesn't appear as if the Bucs need another tight end, sources in Indianapolis say that Miami TE Clive Walford said that he spoke with the Bucs.
Here is a quick look at some names that might have the Bucs attention over the next few days.
T.J. Clemmings, Pitt - Clemmings is an excellent athlete as a former basketball player. He started his collegiate career along the defensive line, but thrived in 2014 playing right tackle. He's a raw prospect, but the combination of his athleticism and size at 6'5'' and 309 lbs, gives Clemmings plenty of potential to be an elite NFL tackle.
Ereck Flowers, Miami - In a draft that might have depth with offensive tackles, but lacks true left tackles, Flowers has the potential to be a franchise left tackle for a long time. He has ideal size at 6'6'' and 329 lbs and attacks in the run game. I like his athleticism in pass protection, but seems to catch defensive linemen, rather than attack them with a solid punch. As we get closer to the draft, I anticipate Flowers moving up the boards.
Donovan Smith, Penn State - Smith is a massive tackle who decided to leave Penn State for the draft despite having another year of eligibility. Smith performed well at the Senior Bowl. His lack of elite athleticism might limit him to right tackle. We have received word that the Bucs have met with Donovan Smith a few times already.
Daryl Williams, Oklahoma - Williams is another player who is very similar to Donovan Smith. Williams is a big right tackle who is powerful in the run game, but lacks athleticism in pass protection. Williams also has potential to move inside and play guard in the NFL. The Bucs were watching Williams closely at the Senior Bowl a few weeks back.
Cedric Ogbuehi, Texas A&M - Ogbuehi was considered a certain 1st round pick before he tore his ACL in Texas A&M's Bowl game at the end of the 2014 season. Ogbuehi has a big frame and long arms. He has the ability and athleticism to play either left or right tackle in the NFL. If he can come back from the torn ACL, Ogbuehi could end up a big time steal for the team he drops to in the draft.
Interior Offensive Linemen
Tre Jackson, FSU - Jackson is a big guard at 6'4'' and 330 lbs. Jackson is strong in the run game and holds his own in pass protection. Jackson's playing style reminds me of former 1st round pick Chance Warmack. Our sources have said that the Bucs have met with Jackson a few times already.
Jeremiah Poutasi, Utah - Poutasi played tackle at Utah, but his massive frame and great strength could make him a force inside at guard. Some NFL evaluators have already started calling Poutasi, "Mike Iupati Jr."
Cameron Erving, FSU - In a perfect world, Erving drops to the Bucs pick in round 2 and everything becomes easy. However, I believe Erving's stock will go up over the next couple of months. I currently have him going 17th to the Chargers. Erving transitioned from tackle to center during the 2014 season. He made the transition seamless and became the top center in college football to be draft-eligible.
Laken Tomlinson, Duke - When I watch Tomlinson on film, I want him to be more dominant at times. However, I also noticed that he doesn't really get bead at all either. He's a big-bodied guard with very good athleticism, and the ability to continue to improve. I view Tomlinson as the prototypical 3rd round guard that starts for 10 years.
A.J. Cann, South Carolina - If we're going to talk about guards, we should talk about a guy who might be the best guard on the board. Cann is a physical freak, but has the athleticism to pull on run plays or screen passes.
Maxx Williams, Minnesota - Williams has 1st round potential. After selecting Austin Seferian-Jenkins in the 2nd round last year, I would hope it's unlikely the Bucs would do that again. Williams is a threat in the pass game, but is also physical as a blocker.
Clive Walford, Miami - The explosive Walford started to make a name for himself with a solid week at the Senior Bowl. He is a threat in the pass game. It was told to us that Walford was saying he had met with the Bucs at the combine.
Wes Saxton, South Alabama - Saxton is a lesser known name for now, but he can be a big time threat in the passing game. He looks like a giant receiver when I watch his film. He measured in at 6'3'' and 248 lbs at the combine, so he isn't too small to be a quality tight end. I might be in the minority, but I think Saxton should be drafted higher than the 5th/6th round projections I'm seeing. He's got impressive potential to develop.
Jesse James, Penn State - Jesse James is likely a solid mid-round tight end who is good, but doesn't have any elite characteristics. James is equally skilled as a blocker and receiver.
Nick O'Leary, FSU - O'Leary was one of Jameis Winston's most reliable targets over the last two years. When O'Leary was injured in the playoff game against Oregon, Jameis Winston lost one of his two reliable targets and the Seminoles offense seemed to struggle with Winston not being able to fully rely on the freshmen that were forced to play. O'Leary is probably more of a depth tight end, but does add some soft hands in the pass game.
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