OTA’s kicked off Tuesday at One Buc Place with weather forcing the Bucs indoors for their first practice. As new players and draft picks got their first opportunity to showcase their skills on Day 1 of OTA’s, one familiar face was a healthy scratch during today’s drills. Buccaneers 2016 1st round pick CB Vernon Hargreaves was seen stretching and chatting it up with trainers near the sideline, but did not participate. When asked after practice about Vernon’s absence, head coach Bruce Arians sternly responded, “You have to ask him”. That doesn’t sound like a head coach pleased with his starting cornerback.
The former star out of the University of Florida has underperformed since being drafted 11th overall by the Buccaneers in the 2016 NFL Draft, with 1 INT and a highlight reel of blown assignments in his first 3 years wasn’t enough to keep the front office from spending 3 of their first 4 draft picks in this year’s draft on the secondary.
Hargreaves has officially been put on notice. Rookie corners Sean Murphy-Bunting and Jamel Dean have flashed in rookie minicamp with multiple INTs. And with the speed they flashed at the draft combine and the fact that second year corner Carlton Davis is building off a promising rookie campaign MJ Stewart is also getting more comfortable at the position, and it’s apparent Hargreaves needs a strong camp to cement his starting position this year. Starting OTA’s sitting on the sideline isn’t a good way to make your case.
Written by: Joshua Omoregie