Fourth round — No. 116 overall
WR Dexter Jackson, Appalachian State
Mock Draft 1.0 selection: DT DeMario Pressley, N.C. State
Mock Draft 2.0 selection: Pressley
Why?: One mock draft has the Philadelphia Eagles selecting Jackson at No. 16 in the fourth round, which to me seems just about right for a 5-foot-9, 179-pound slot receiver who some scouts compare to San Diego's Eric Parker. Keep in mind, though, that the Bucs had a private workout with Jackson and that could signal that their interest in him is higher than a fourth-round selection.
Scouts look at Jackson as a slot receiver in the mold of New England's Wes Welker, who led the NFL in receptions a year ago. They also look at Jackson as a potential value in the return game.
ASU used him primarily as a punt returner, and his sophomore year he was one of the top returners in the nation, scoring twice. He finished his career at ASU with 93 returns for 837 yards. He also returned 35 kickoffs for 619 yards, a 17.7-yard average. As for his receiving, he averaged about 32 catches a season in his final three years at ASU.
What Jackson does have is top-end speed that reminds some people of Devin Hester. He ran a 4.33 at the combine and performed well at the East-West Shrine game and the Senior Bowl, events that gave him a chance to prove himself against players from larger schools. Most scouts agreed that he showed he could be a NFL talent.
Some compare him to Washington's Antwaan Randle El, and scouts agree he needs to refine his route running and his talent as a deep threat. But in the fourth round Jackson can be of tremendous value to the Bucs, who need a player to challenge Micheal Spurlock for the return job and can come in and offer depth as a wide receiver. Remember — the Bears drafted Hester in the second round and he's struggled to offer them anything beyond his return abilities. The Bucs could wait two more rounds and get a player that can also catch the football.
Alternate theory: At this point in the draft, the Bucs will look to take the best available player, or trade down for more picks. Players that could help them in this round include Louisville WR Harry Douglas, Georgia Tech DE Darrell Robertson, Iowa DE Ken Iwebema, Georgia Tech RB Tashard Choice, Maryland DT Dre Moore, Miami LB Tavares Gooden and Georgia RB Thomas Brown. Plus, if Jon Gruden ABSOLUTELY has to pick a quarterback, Kentucky's Andre Woodson should be available.
Did you miss his previous selection? Access it right here:
And don't forget to stop by on Wednesday for my third-round selection
Matthew Postins covers the Buccaneers for BucsBlitz.com and the Charlotte Sun-Herald in Port Charlotte, Fla. An award-winning member of the Pro Football Writers Association, he appears frequently on Scot Brantley Show from 3-6 p.m. weekdays on WHBO 1470-AM in Tampa-Clearwater.