OJ Howard’s Role On Offense Could Be On The Rise


In the 2017 draft the Buccaneers unexpectedly had OJ Howard fall in their lap at the 19th pick in the first round. No one had Howard falling anywhere close to 19, and no mainstream mock drafts had him ever going to Tampa Bay. With the plethora of potential Howard has to ignite the offense with big plays, the Bucs didn’t blink and nabbed him last year. Some though, would argue that his rookie season failed to meet the general populous’ expectations.

It’s true he was targeted less than 40 times last season, but he brought down 26 of those balls for 432 yards and 6 touchdowns. In fact, he tied Brate last season for most touchdowns by any pass catcher/running back on the team last season. Any season where a player catches more touchdowns than an elite receiver like Mike Evans, especially as a rookie, to me that should seal that player’s season off as solid in the least.

Howard’s strength is that he is both a catching and blocking TE. Which is surprisingly a rare quality in the league to have both and execute it well. This gives him a high ceiling. That said the expectations are even higher this year for him. Howard himself even admitted during mini camp earlier this month that there are areas he is pushing himself to improve on to take it to the next level. Which is exactly what you want to hear from a young potential star. If the chemistry continues to improve between Winston and Howard, you should see more balls thrown his way, especially in the red zone. Which could make for a banner season for O.J. Howard.