Posted in NFL Draft

Brandt – Bucs should fair better in draft

by Roland Johnson on April 23, 2009

Gil Brandt, of NFL.com who was the Cowboys’ vice president of player personnel from 1960-89 & now the host of an NFL show on Sirius Satellite Radio along with being a respected draft analyst feels the Bucs next five drafts under the guidance of new general manager Mark Dominik will be far more productive then the last five under Bruce Allen.

“I think they’ll draft much better the next five years, than they did the past five,” Brandt said, from his home in Dallas. “They’re not going to reach for guys, they’re not going to speculate. I think they’re just going to go for solid players.” Source: HeraldTribune.com

According to Brandt, the Bucs have had the most draft picks of any NFL team over the last five seasons, 52 to be exact, the problem has been when you start compairing draft picks and there current status on the team.

Yet out of the Bucs’ 52 picks, only eight became starters, which works out to 15 percent. The league average, according to Brandt, is 26 percent — 330 starters among 1,275 draft picks.

Only one team drafted fewer starters, and not surprisingly, it’s the Detroit Lions, winless last season.

By contrast, the 2008 NFC champion Arizona Cardinals have been one of the best drafting teams. Arizona had only 33 draft selections from 2004 to 2008, yet nine (27 percent) became starters. So the Cardinals picked one more starter than Tampa Bay, with 19 less draft selections.

The Bucs have also performed poorly in the next category by which draft picks are judged — backup players.

Tampa Bay drafted 15 players who became backups, which amounts to 29 percent of its 52 total picks. Again, the Bucs are below the league average, which Brandt said is 33 percent.

Twenty of those 52 picks are no longer playing in the NFL, which works out to 38 percent. The league average is 26 percent of draft picks being out of football.

By comparison, only six of Arizona’s 33 picks are no longer in the NFL. Source: HeraldTribune.com

What this information does not take into consideration is where the players were picked, the breakdown of the total picks is as follows. Also on a side note the team has not had 52 picks since 2004, they have only had 47 so the math from the actual article is wrong. Technically the Bucs have 8 starters the percentage is 17%, where as the backup situation is a little better as well as opposed to the 29% in the article the team is at 32% bring them more in line with the league average.

First round picks since 2004, 5 or 11%, second round picks 5 or 11%, third round picks 6 or 13%, fourth round picks 5 or 11%, fifth round picks 6 or 13%, sixth round picks 6 or 13%, seventh round picks 14 or 30%. Percentages were rounded up.

The bottom line is the team needs to doa  better job identifing talent that can contribute at a high level in the NFL.

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