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If you happen to see a left tackle up in a tree, you had better believe he climbed up there because left tackles sure as hell don’t grow on them. We’ve covered this topic before. For a right-handed QB, the left tackle is their best friend.
At 6’6″ and 338 pounds, Donovan Smith can throw some shade. Not allowing a single sack in his junior/senior year of high school as well as being a standout defensive lineman, Smith was rated a four-star athlete going into college at Penn State. Drafted in the second round (#34) of the 2015 draft, Donovan has been a steady presence in the Buccaneer offensive line ever since.
This has all the initial offerings of a success story, so why aren’t we already deciding that the next contract he gets will be starter’s pay and as a Buccaneer? This is the reason we have a general manager who awakens in a cold sweat in the middle of the night, worrying about things like this.
Jason Licht drafted Donovan Smith, 33 picks behind Jameis Winston. This made all the sense in the world. Draft your franchise quarterback and get him some protection with a solid, non-injury-prone rock at left tackle. Coming into 2018 the Buccaneers decided to pick up the fifth-year option on Winston’s contract. Smith’s contract, being a second rounder, had no such option. We find ourselves wondering if there will be a qualifying offer from the Buccaneers, as Donovan Smith will be a free agent in three more weeks. There have been rumblings of lazy feet. There have been some ill-timed holding penalties. But the one thing that Donovan Smith has tried not to do is leave Jameis Winston out on a limb.