Don’t Sleep on the Small Schools – Daniel Beebe


The 2018 NFL Draft is coming up on April 26th. This year’s draft will be held in Arlington, Texas at AT&T Stadium. The first selection will be made by the Cleveland Browns, who seem to be looking for a quarterback again. The Buccaneers have the 7th pick in the draft, and will probably look for offensive line help. The first round is usually filled with collegiate superstars, but who will we look back on and wonder why we didn’t select him. These guys are what we like to refer to as the “sleepers” of the draft.

Let’s look at some of the offensive sleepers in this year’s draft class. Jake Wieneke is a wide receiver out of South Dakota State. The offensive production that Wieneke produced in college is nothing short of impressive. Wieneke was a touchdown machine in college. He found the end zone 59 times in his four-year career. He also produced over 1,000 yards in every season, but one. In 2017, Wieneke put up 965 yards with 16 touchdowns. He could be a guy that teams regret passing on when we look back on this draft.

Martez Carter is a running back out of Grambling State. Carter is a 5’9 205 pound running back that could be the next Le’Veon Bell. He has the skill set to be an every-down back in the NFL. He is undersized but has the potential to score every time he touches the ball. Carter had a great season in 2017. He recorded 10 touchdowns and rushed for 854 yards. Over his four-year career at Grambling, Carter rushed for 2,628 yards and made 29 touchdowns. He added 961 yards receiving and 9 touchdowns. He is a patient runner that also possesses speed and power.

Alex Cappa is one offensive lineman that has grabbed the attention of many teams. Cappa has starred at Humboldt State. The Buccaneers have selected players from smaller schools (Ali Marpet). Cappa has starred at multiple positions for Humboldt State, guard and tackle. This makes him very marketable for NFL teams. Cappa played very well in the Senior Bowl against the top defensive players in collegiate football. He may not be a day one starter, but if teams can be patient, Cappa could be a star in the NFL in a few years.

These are a few collegiate athletes that we may look back on and argue with our friends on why our favorite teams passed on them. Tampa Bay needs help on the offensive line. If Tampa Bay selects Quenton Nelson (Notre Dame) and Alex Cappa (Humboldt State) they could be the building blocks that make Tampa Bay a contender for years to come.

Edited by Morgan Adele