Any way we try to slice this, this draft grade hinges on whether or not QB Josh Freeman develops into a franchise QB. Other than him the 2009 Bucs draft class started one game. All indications are this is a team headed in the wrong direction, a solid 3rd overall pick in the 2010 draft could change that, but the coaching staff and front office seem in over their head. One year ago I called their approach to the draft unconventional, considering this was a team rebuilding. Now, a year later, that seems to hold true, but if Freeman delivers we would still have to call this draft a success.
A quick look at the 2009 Bucs draft class:
•Round One (17)- Josh Freeman QB
•Round Three (81)- Roy Miller DT
•Round Four (117)- Kyle Moore DE
•Round Five (155)- Xavier Fulton OT
•Round Seven (217)- EJ Biggers CB
•Round Seven (233)- Sammie Stroughter WR
Ok we pass on the Freeman pick, because every NFL team will take a chance to land a franchise QB. Time will tell on that one. Miller played in 15 games started one and had 33 tackles and two sacks. Moore played in eight games as a reserve, and had ten tackles. Fulton was injured in pre-season along with Biggers. Stroughter played in 13 games and made 31 catches.
The flaw, it seems comes with those two defensive line pick. Had one or preferably both of those picks been a little better, the Bucs could use the third pick in this year’s draft to address needs in their secondary or elsewhere. Now that will have to take a DT, and hope that he is good enough to build the defense around. I am leaning towards an incomplete grade for this class as we do not yet accurately now what Freeman will be, and two of these picks went down with injuries.
I think this class has a lot of potential, Freeman aside if the two defensive lineman develops into solid backups or specific role players down the road than this draft class grade will go way up.
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