With everything getting somewhat back to normal, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers could have a lot going on with their wide receiver group. Although these are just possible storylines, some of them might come true.
Tyler Johnson and Scotty Miller: Battle Over the Third Receiver Slot
Since the Buccaneers drafted Tyler Johnson back in April, speculation circulated around who will take over as the Bucs’ third wide receiver. The Buccaneers already have Scotty Miller, who could keep his place, however, Johnson’s talents should not be overlooked.
Miller only started two games last season and had 200 yards. With such an early injury, fans are cautious about the 22-year-old. And though Miller has the chance to be a talented player in the league, Johnson could outshine him.
Coming out of Minnesota, Johnson boasted 1,318 yards in his last year. He also scored 13 touchdowns in the same year. The season prior, he had another outstanding year with 1,169 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Both players are talented, however, Tyler Johnson is the clear winner of the open spot. With Miller’s injury and only playing two games in his rookie year, Johnson has less baggage. I also think Johnson fits the Bucs offense better.
With Brady at the helm, Johnson could have a very successful year. I also believe Johnson could add protection to the other weapons on the field. With this ongoing battle between Miller and Johnson, training camp should be interesting.
Three Undrafted Wide Receivers Fight For A Roster Spot
In late April, the Buccaneers signed 13 undrafted free agents, three of which were wide receivers; John Hurst out of West Georgia, Josh Pearson from Jacksonville State, and Travis Jonsen out of Montana State.
The undrafted players have been challenging each other on the field during training camp, though one player has been stealing all the attention. Josh Pearson, who in 2019 had 308 yards and five touchdowns, has had coaches in awe over his talents.
In 2018, Pearson had 733 yards and 15 touchdowns, giving him a career total of 1,041 yards and 20 touchdowns in college.
The runner-up to Pearson could be Travis Jonsen. Jonsen’s 2019 season was very similar to Pearson’s; 580 yards, and one touchdown. Although his career numbers aren’t close to Pearson’s, 899 yards, and two touchdowns, Jonesen is a great young player.
With all of this, where does that leave John Hurst? Hurst isn’t a terrible player, but he’s the weakest link. Hurst’s best year came in 2018 where he had 255 yards and two touchdowns. In 2019, Hurst only played three games and his numbers took a decline with only 156 yards receiving.
I think Pearson gets the nod; will he get the coveted third wide receiver spot? No. But he could be good on special teams as a kick returner. Pearson is good, but he won’t be a starter, but you never know when training camp finally starts.
A lot of questions are still up in the air, and it’s too early to tell who goes where. I think the Bucs will use Johnson as their third wide receiver and Pearson will make the team in some capacity.