Buccaneers Rumors

Draft Pick Signings: 5/24/18

Here are today’s second-tier draft signings:

  • The Buccaneers signed their second-round pick, cornerback Carlton Davis from Auburn. Davis was a three-year starter for the Tigers, earning a first-team All-SEC selection as a senior. An average athlete with good size, Davis will slide in behind Brent Grimes, Ryan Smith, and Vernon Hargreaves on the depth chart. The Bucs likely see Davis as the eventual successor to the now 34-year old Grimes.
  • Second-round linebacker Breeland Speaks signed his rookie deal with the Chiefs. Left without a first-round pick in the 2018 draft due to last year’s Patrick Mahomes trade, Speaks was the team’s first selection. Speaks played defensive tackle and defensive end in college, but the Chiefs plan to line him up at outside linebacker. Playing at Mississippi last year, Speaks generated seven sacks. He’ll initially be competing for playing time behind veterans Justin Houston and Dee Ford.
  • The Jaguars agreed to terms with third-round safety Ronnie Harrison on his rookie deal. Harrison was one of a slew of Alabama players selected in last year’s draft, and is looking to be the latest in a long line of Crimson Tide defenders to become stars in the NFL. Harrison was always a great player in college, but underwhelmed athletically with his testing at the combine. Harrison will play strong safety for the Jaguars, and is yet another piece added to their already dominant defense.

Buccaneers Sign First-Round Pick Vita Vea

The Buccaneers announced that they have signed first-round pick Vita Vea. As the No. 12 overall selection in this year’s draft, Vea will receive a four-year $14.824MM deal with a fifth-year option at a yet-to-be-determined rate. 

The Bucs were extremely high on Vea coming into the draft and placed a top-five grade on the Washington product, GM Jason Licht said recently. The Buccaneers took a chance by trading the No. 7 pick to Buffalo, but they were able to come away with a player they badly wanted while picking up two second round picks.

Tevita Tuliʻakiʻono Tuipulotu Mosese Vaʻhae Fehoko Faletau Vea – or Vita Vea for short – tallied 43 total tackles (5.5 for a loss) and 3.5 sacks in his final year on campus. Although he is considered to be somewhat raw and will have to keep his weight under control, the Buccaneers believe that he can be a highly effective run stuffer in both 4-3 and 3-4 sets.

When lining up in their base 4-3, the Bucs project to start Vea and Gerald McCoy in the middle with Jason Pierre-Paul and Vinny Curry bookending them. On paper, the that projects to be one of the most menacing front lines in the league.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 5/23/18

Today’s minor moves:

Atlanta Falcons

Detroit Lions

Kansas City Chiefs

New York Jets

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs Free Agent Targets

Buccaneers Scout Receives Promotion

  • A Buccaneers staffer since 2014, Brian McLaughlin will ascend to the role of a national scout. Jenna Laine of ESPN.com notes McLaughlin will be part of National Football Scouting, of which 15 NFL teams are affiliated, and piece together early prospect rankings that help set up organizational scouting reports.

Vincent Jackson Retires From NFL

Vincent Jackson is “very happily retired” from the NFL, a representative for the wide receiver tells Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com (on Twitter). Jackson has played in over a year-and-a-half, so the news was largely expected.

Jackson appeared in three Pro Bowls over the course of his 12-year NFL career with the Chargers and Buccaneers. His last NFL season in 2016, however, did not go according to plan. That campaign ended after just five games due to a serious knee injury.

Now focused on community and business work in the Tampa, Florida area, the 35-year-old has fully transitioned into post-NFL life. He leaves the game with 9,080 receiving yards and 57 touchdowns and six individual seasons with 1,000 yards or more.

Jackson entered the league as a second-round pick of the (then San Diego) Chargers in 2005. Injuries hampered him as an NFL freshman, but he eventually blossomed into a dangerous receiving threat. A contract dispute later soured his relationship with Bolts brass, leading him to sign a five-year, $55.55MM free agent deal with the Bucs in 2012. Things started with a bang in Tampa as he enjoyed a career year with 72 catches for 1,384 yards and eight touchdowns. His eye-popping of 19.2 yards per catch led the NFL that year.

After a successful and lucrative NFL career, Jackson has decided to focus on other endeavors. It sounds like he’s settled into post-football life, even if Jon Gruden calls him up.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Minor NFL Transactions: 5/17/18

We’ll keep track of today’s minor moves here:

Denver Broncos

Los Angeles Rams

New Orleans Saints

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Minor NFL Transactions: 5/13/18

Today’s minor moves:

New Orleans Saints

New York Giants

Pittsburgh Steelers

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Draft Pick Signings: 5/12/18

Here are today’s rookie signings:

  • The Buccaneers have signed third-round offensive lineman Alex Cappa, reports Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times (via Twitter). The Division II Humboldt State product was the GNAC offensive lineman of the year for four straight seasons, and he was a unanimous All-American in 2017. Cappa primarily played tackle in college, but he could end up being a versatile reserve lineman for the Buccaneers.
  • The Chargers announced that they have signed third-round defensive tackle Justin Jones to a four-year contract. Interestingly, the Bolts’ first 2018 pick signing comes from the third round, which generally produces the biggest hiccups in terms of negotiations. Jones played on the N.C. State defensive line on which Bradley Chubb starred and fellow 2018 draftees B.J. Hill and Kentavius Street played. Jones finished with 22.5 tackles in three seasons with the Wolfpack.

Bucs Rookie LB Jack Cichy Already Practicing

  • Buccaneers rookie linebacker Jack Cichy is already practicing with his new squad, writes Greg Auman of TampaBay.com. The sixth-round pick is nine months removed from surgery on a torn ACL in his right knee, an injury that caused him to miss the 2017 season (and, vicariously, caused his draft stock to fall). “It was fun to be back out here. Everything felt good,” said Cichy, who wore a brace on his right knee. “It felt crisp and felt good just to get back in the flow of things and get acclimated here.”

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