Buccaneers Bowles Names Most Improved Defensive Player


The Tampa Bay Buccaneers spent a fifth-round draft pick in the 2022 NFL draft to select defensive back Zyon McCollum from Sam Houston State.

McCollum’s rookie year was a mixed bag while seeing minimal playing time. The 2023 season saw McCollum getting significantly more playing time, and he took advantage of it.

After the Buccaneers Divisional Round loss to the Detroit Lions, head coach Todd Bowles talked about which defensive player was the most improved from the previous season.

“I don’t know if anybody surprised me. Most improved…before Mike Greene got hurt, he was playing good football. I thought Logan Hall came a good, long way. Zyon McCollum would probably win that – as far as most improved from last year to this year – the versatility he showed, the toughness he showed. As mild-mannered as he is off the field, he plays like a rocket when he’s on the field. I really loved what he did this year.”

McCollum is a versatile defensive back who looks to be coming into his own. Yes he’s made some crucial mistakes, but his overall game has improved dramatically. His 2023 campaign boasted 68 tackles, nine passes defensed, and two forced fumbles.

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