2016 first round draft pick Vernon Hargreaves has already been turning some heads at training camp. With a couple of picks and countless displays of excellent coverage on the team's receivers so far, he is starting to fit in well as a central cog in the Bucs' new-look defense.
Hargreaves has attributed a lot of his early on success to the veteran corners of the team, saying he has already learned a lot from them in the relatively short time he has been here.
"We got some great vets. Brent Grimes, Alterraun Verner, they're textbook in everything they do, they're real professional," Hargreaves said after Wednesday's training camp. "They're always helping me out with new techniques and things that they know. I'm always picking their brains, so you know we got a great group of guys."
Hargreaves' explosive play at the University of Florida was a sight to see, and there's no reason to believe that it won't translate to the pros. Vernon's ball-hawking ability and speed are a couple things that gave him such an advantage in college, and two of the best possible coaches in Verner and Grimes are now always readily available to him.
Grimes and Verner's size similarities to Hargreaves also may help in mentoring him on how to compensate for a lack of height against big-bodied divisional receivers like Julio Jones and Kelvin Benjamin. As Hargreaves, Verner and Grimes all stand below six feet tall, they will be disadvantaged against some wideouts in this aspect, but height isn't the be-all-end-all factor in crafting a successful CB. The Bucs corps of defensive backs still has all the mental acuity, verticality and speed to make up for a lack of size, and should be an exciting group to watch come this season.