Report: Bucs Coach Considered Drafting QB at #5

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When it comes to the NFL Draft there are whispers, rumors, and straight up innuendos. The most consistent two things you will hear from general managers and coaches during the days leading up to the draft are that they will draft for a need or take the best available player.

If you’re still reading this, then you must be interested in who the QB was the Buccaneers were considering taking at the fifth position. First clue: the Buccaneers have only had the #5 pick in the draft twice, and they were not looking anywhere near the offensive side of the ball this year.

It was 2005, and three running backs were taken in the first five picks. The Buccaneers, picking at #5, selected Carnell (Cadillac) Williams, a running back out of Auburn.  A first round Auburn RB that would actually suit up this time(see Bo Jackson).

Want to talk about strange? Most of us remember that at #5, Williams wasn’t even the first RB from Auburn off the board that day. That honor belonged to Ronnie Brown, who was selected three picks earlier by Miami.  But Jon Gruden being Jon Gruden you just know he had a QB on the radar.

Turns out Gruden had been kicking the tires on none other than Aaron Rodgers, a QB coming out of California. Aaron Rodgers later revealed in an interview that Coach Gruden had told him that if he was still there at #5, Rodgers was his man. Teams stretch the truth with prospective draft picks, no news here. The Buccaneers rolled into 2005 with Chris Simms and Brian Griese at QB and would finish 11-5, winning the NFC South title.

Cadillac Williams won the 2005 NFL Rookie of the Year award. After a series of knee injuries and the emergence of LaGarrette Blount, Williams found himself relegated to third down back.  He left to back up Stephen Jackson with the St. Louis Rams in 2011.

Would Aaron Rodgers be looking at a future with a bronze bust in Canton if the Buccaneers had selected him in 2005? Did the three years he spent backing up HOF quarterback Bret Favre make Rodgers the QB that he is? These questions will remain unanswered. One thing we know: the Buccaneers did draft a QB for their defense this year, even if that role will belong to Levonte David for the time being.

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