Donovan Smith, the 34th overall pick of the 2015 NFL Draft, was selected in the second round by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, but he still doesn’t have a new deal despite the optimism of general manager Jason Licht.
The four-year starter has never missed a game playing all 64 at the tackle position. He’s also one of the most disciplined in the game causing 24 penalties his entire career. Most was in his rookie season with 10. He committed none in 2016. While he committed eight in 2017, he did improve last year with six. Going to a more stable contender could be enticing for Smith, but if he re-signs, he’ll be with a coach who’s proven to have success as a coordinator and the head coaching level. Coaching may be different, but he knows the others around him.
Could Smith move to the inside and play guard? Perhaps. He does possess the frame and mobility, but the question becomes who will protect Jameis Winston’s blindside? Michael Liedtke is by no means proven at the position. Many mock drafts have the Bucs taking Jawaan Taylor from Florida at no. 5. It’s possible Smith and Taylor could end up being the tackles and Demar Dotson becomes the odd man out.
It’s difficult to assess head coach Bruce Arians priorities because there are so many he needs depth-wise. A splash player from the draft could be that lineman who opens big holes for his running back or it could be a clutch ball carrier who can create the impact.
Could you see the Bucs drafting Taylor and keeping Smith?
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