By Andy Villamarzo
Hernando Sun sports writer
TAMPA- The Tampa Bay Buccaneers went ahead and addressed a need at right tackle and selected offensive tackle Tristan Wirfs as the No. 13 pick in the NFL Draft 2020. Buccaneers traded with the San Francisco 49ers to move up from the No. 14 pick to No. 13 to select Wirfs, who gives Tampa Bay a lift on the offensive line.
With Tom Brady at quarterback for the Buccaneers, solidifying the offensive line was important for general manager Jason Licht and head coach Bruce Arians. Wirfs played left and right tackle for Iowa and could be a Day 1 starter opposite of Donovan Smith. The Buccaneers’ offensive line now could potentially be Smith, Ali Marpet, Ryan Jensen, Alex Cappa and Wirfs at right tackle.
Some draft analysts had the top four offensive tackles off the board by the time Tampa Bay picked at No. 14. With the Buccaneers being able to jump a pick to select Wirfs. Now it will be interesting to see how Tampa Bay drafts from rounds two through seven. Amongst other needs for Tampa Bay is running back, safety and possibly a young quarterback in the later rounds.
NFL.com’s Daniel Jeremiah had the Buccaneers selecting University of Alabama wide receiver Jerry Jeudy, who ended up going at No. 15 to the Denver Broncos. The Buccaneers have one of the most formidable pass catching units in the NFL, as Brady will have his fair share of proven receivers in Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, OJ Howard, Cameron Brate, Scotty Miller and the newly acquired Rob Gronkowski.
Tampa Bay with the additions of Brady, Gronkowski and Wirfs have vaulted themselves as one of the NFC Conference’s top teams and potentially the favorites to win the NFC South. The last time the Buccaneers reached the postseason was in the 2007 season under the watch of Jon Gruden, who is the head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders.
The NFL Draft was done in a much different fashion compared to the original format, as teams had 10 minutes each in the first round to make their respective picks. The Cincinnati Bengals had the No. 1 pick in the draft and selected LSU quarterback Joe Burrows, who looks to be a Day 1 starter for the Bengals. The No. 2 pick was by the Washington Redskins and they selected defensive end Chase Young of Ohio State.
Andy Villamarzo can be reached at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @avillamarzo.