The 2014 season saw the Tampa Bay Buccaneers finish 2-14. Finishing in last of the NFC South and last in the NFL, the Bucs hold possession of the coveted No. 1 pick in the 2015 NFL Draft. In 2014, the Bucs struggled across the board, alternating between quarterbacks Josh McCown and Mike Glennon. They did however find a franchise receiver in rookie Mike Evans. Evans amassed 68 receptions for 1,051 receiving yards and a stellar 12 touchdowns. The biggest question remains; who will be throwing the ball to Evans next year and will the answer be found when they make the No. 1 overall selection in the NFL Draft?
Tampa Bay’s defense last season was porous, allowing 255.3 yards in the air and 113.7 per game on the ground, and ranking 28th and 19th in the NFL respectively. The Bucs need to address these issues in order to compete in a tight NFC South. Lovie Smith is capable of resurrecting this defense but will need to use the draft to boost the linebacking corps. Lavonte David, who put together a brilliant season, needs to be surrounded with help. The 24-year-old is good building block for which to work around as they search for a new anchor in the middle of the field.
The offensive side of the ball, like the defense, is missing essential cogs for success. With one of the least effective running attacks in the NFL, the solution moving forward does not seem to be on the current roster. Doug Martin, Bobby Rainey and Charles Sims give them youth in the backfield but poor seasons have the front office looking elsewhere for a permanent every-down back. This group of running backs needs aid from an offensive line that similarly struggled in 2014. The Bucs have a tough decision at hand, as they may need to use some of the early picks they hold to find new tackles.
The big question mark around the quarterback position has been the hot topic of discuss in Tampa. Florida State’s Jameis Winston appears to be the consensus best choice to be selected with their first pick. However, this is not a definite. Winston’s off field problems seems to be the major red flag in their looming decision as they enter the final stretch before the draft. Talent and leadership wise, he is the best quarterback for the Bucs to select. If they decide to trade the pick or not to select a quarterback, questions will remain as to who will be under center come opening day next season. Regardless of who the Bucs select, TiqIQ will be the place to purchase your Bucs tickets this season.
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