Tampa Bay Buccaneers Mock Draft: Full 7-Round Predictions at Season's End
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will pick 13th overall, as they finished with a 7-9 record.
7-9 is a decent record, but the Bucs still have a long way to go before they can make the playoffs.
But maybe, with a good draft, they will be able to take that next step.
So whom might they draft?
Read through this slideshow for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' 2013 mock draft.
Round 1 Pick No. 13: Dion Jordan
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The Bucs need a pass rush.
Dion Jordan is a pass-rusher.
The 6'6'' Oregon defensive end is one of the best athletes in the country and has incredible potential as a football player.
Here's what ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay has to say about him.
Jordan dealt with a nagging shoulder injury late in the season, but he is long and athletic and has explosive upper-body power despite his lean frame. He can rush the passer from a two- or three-point stance, holds up in space and has the versatility to play multiple roles along the front seven. (ESPN)
With just 25 sacks on the season, Tampa Bay placed at 30th in the NFL.
Adding a pass-rusher like Dion Jordan would boost the strength of the entire defense.
Round 2 Pick No. 44: David Amerson
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Just like how Dion Jordan can fix one of the Bucs' greatest weaknesses, so can David Amerson improve the struggling secondary.
To be exact, Tampa Bay has the league's worst pass defense.
Amerson is a pick machine and great in coverage, as shown by his 13 picks in 2011.
True, Amerson hasn't produced at the same level in 2012, but in the right system with the right support, he can once again return to his ball-hawking ways.
Round 3 Pick No. 74: T.J. McDonald
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Now that we have filled the Bucs' two most pressing needs, we can move on to filling the needs of the future.
Namely, finding Ronde Barber's future replacement.
Enter T.J. McDonald.
The USC free safety has four years of experience under his belt and, with a solid height of 6'2'', seems built to cover tight ends, which is an increasingly important skill in the modern NFL.
Fans will especially love McDonald's hyper-aggressive playing style.
Round 4 Pick No. 110: Kenny Stills
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The Buccaneers have their No. 1 wide receiver in Vincent Jackson.
They have their No. 2 wide receiver in Mike Williams.
But they do not have a true slot receiver.
They should look toward Oklahoma's speedy Kenny Stills for the dimension in their offense that they currently lack.
Round 4 Pick No. 124: E.J. Manuel
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One way that the Bucs can emulate the top teams in the NFL is by drafting a quarterback prospect with the intent to develop him rather than start him, so that they have a competent No. 2 QB in the future.
E.J. Manuel of Florida State would make a great prospect for Tampa Bay, as he is very similar to Josh Freeman. The two are fairly athletic and have strong arms.
Should Freeman get inured, Manuel could perhaps even win a few games in his place.
Round 5 Pick No. 141: Ryan Otten
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As starting tight end Dallas Clark continues to age, it may be time to look for a prospect to one day take his place.
In San Jose State's Ryan Otten, the Bucs might just have their tight end of the future.
The 6'5'' TE is more of a receiver than a blocker, which will complement Luke Stocker quite nicely.
Look for Otten to create major matchup problems for other teams.
Round 6 Pick No. 171: Rick Wagner
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This year, the Bucs offense suffered greatly as the team lost many offensive linemen.
First came Davin Joseph. Then Jeremy Trueblood was benched. Then we lost Carl Nicks to injury.
In order to increase the depth of the O-line, the Bucs should draft Rick Wager, who has plenty of experience blocking from his time at Wisconsin.