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Tampa Bay Buccaneers Go Safety First with Alabama's Mark Barron

TUSCALOOSA, AL - NOVEMBER 19:  Defensive back Mark Barron #4 of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs some practice drills before the game against the Georgia Southern Eagles at Bryant-Denny Stadium on November 19, 2011 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  (Photo by Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images)
Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images
Tom EdringtonSenior Writer INovember 5, 2016

Leave it to the Buccaneers to pull off the surprise.

After trading down with the Jacksonville Jaguars, leaving the five spot and descending to the seventh pick, your Bucs took safety Mark Barron from Alabama.

Barron stands out in a weak safety class. He's a 6'2'', 218-pound big, rangy guy with long arms and long legs. He was a big part of two national championship teams. He can come in and match up with tight ends in the NFC South—guys like Jimmy Graham from New Orleans and Tony Gonzalez in Atlanta.

Defense is the obvious weak spot on the Buccaneers and safety is a position that needed a lot of help. Help is here with Barron.

The Barron pick could be labeled a minor surprise. League experts were aligning the Bucs with Trent Richardson, Morris Claiborne and Luke Kuechly.

Richardson went off the board early when Cleveland swapped spots with Minnesota and grabbed the star Alabama running back. The Vikings then went in the direction most thought they would, selecting tackle Matt Kalil.

The Buccaneers picked up a fourth-round pick from Jacksonville to move down to the seventh spot. The Jags then grabbed wide receiver Justin Blackmon.

The moves weren't over. The Cowboys jumped up into the sixth spot, swapping with St. Louis to get the player most thought the Bucs would get—Morris Claiborne.

Is Barron considered a reach?

When you consider the state of the defense, Barron was a safe choice. He was the only nice safety in a very weak safety class.

The Bucs also added that fourth pick, which will give them seven picks—and they'll need all of them to try and upgrade this football team.

A lot of people thought the Bucs would end up with an Alabama player. They just didn't think it would be Barron.

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