What does the Buccaneers’ 53-man roster look like heading into the third and final week of the preseason? Previewing the Tampa Bay roster for the upcoming 2022 season.
With the preseason wrapping up this weekend, all teams will be cutting their roster to the 53-man roster limit by 4 PM next Tuesday. The Buccaneers have one of the deepest rosters in the NFL and are projected to make a Super Bowl run in what could be Tom Brady’s final season. The bottom third of the roster is the one that is likely to see the most turnover. With that in mind, here are my thoughts on the Buccaneer’s final 53-man roster.
The Buccaneers Offense Heading Into Preseason Game Three
** Indicates a rookie.
If he stays healthy, Brady will play the majority of the snaps. Last season Blaine Gabbert saw mop-up duty in three games, and Kyle Trask did not throw a pass in the regular season.
Tom Brady Blaine Gabbert Kyle Trask
Wide Receivers: (Seven)
Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Julio Jones, and Russell Gage make up the NFL’s best starting wide receiver unit. Period. End of conversation. No other team can roll out four receivers with this kind of talent. Evans will be going for his eighth straight 1,000-yard receiving season. Look for Godwin to go over 1,000 yards as well.
Mike Evans Chris Godwin Julio Jones Russell Gage Tyler Johnson Jaelon Darden Kaylon Geiger
Running Backs: (Four)
There is no surprise here as the Buccaneers will carry four running backs, and all four have gotten work in preseason games. Leonard Fournette will be the starter. He came to camp in good shape, at around 245, down from his OTA weight of 260. He is also an excellent receiver and will be the number one back for the Buccaneers.
Leonard Fournette Ke’Shawn Vaughan Rachaad White** Gio Bernard
Tight end: (Three)
This is the weakest position on this team. The Buccaneers signed Kyle Rudolph to a one-year contract to replace Rob Gronkowski. It will be interesting to see how Brate does in a starting role. Brate has been a safety valve for Brady in the red zone the last two seasons. This season, he will be counted on to play a more significant role in the offense than in the past.
Cameron Brate Kyle Rudolph Cade Otten**
Offensive line: (Nine)
This is an area where the lack of depth could hurt the team during the season. Ryan Jensen will probably be placed on injured reserve once the rosters have been trimmed to 53. Aaron Stinnie has already been placed on IR. So let’s take a look at how this offensive line shakes out.
Donovon Smith Luke Goedeke** Robert Hainsey Shaq Mason Tristan Wirfs Josh Wells Nick Leverett John Molchon Fred Johnson
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The Buccaneers Defense Heading Into Preseason Game Three
Defensive Line: (Seven)
The Buccaneers got considerably younger along the defensive line. They drafted Logan Hall and did not re-sign N’Damokung Suh. A healthy Akeim Hicks will make this Bucs defensive line one of the most feared in the NFL.
Akeim Hicks Vita Vea William Gholston Logan Hall** Patrick O’Connor Rakeem Nunez-Roaches Deadrin Senat
Again the first four or five players of this group comprise one of the best linebacker units in the NFL. Unfortunately, the Buccaneers put Cam Gill on the IR, meaning his season is over. The Bucs also expect second-year linebacker Joe Tryon-Shoyinka to take that next step in his development.
Shaquill Barrett Lavonte David Devin White Joe Tryon-Shoyinka Carl Nassib KJ Britt Grant Stuard Anthony Nelson
Defensive Backs: (Nine)
With the addition of Logan Ryan and Keanu Neal, this unit is much improved from last season. In addition, the team is high on Zyon McCollum, the rookie from Sam Houston State. He is one of the quickest players on the team as he runs a 4.40/40.
Sean Murphy-Bunting Antoine Winfield Jr. Mike Edwards Carlton Davis Jamel Dean Logan Ryan Keanu Neal Zyon McCollum** Rashard Robinson
There has been an intense battle in training camp between Ryan Succop and second-year kicker Jose Borregales. Succop was perfect in his preseason debut in Tennessee, while Borregales missed a 58-yarder against Miami. I think Succop wins this battle and will be the Kicker for the Bucs this season.
Jaelon Darden will be the returner in Tampa. The team has used Kaylon Geiger and Rachaad White in that role in the preseason. But neither has done enough for the Bucs to move away from Darden.
K Ryan Succop P Jake Camarada** LS Zach Trinor PR Jaelon Darden KR Jaelon Darden
Looking Ahead To The Buccaneers Probably Practice Squad
This is a crapshoot, but here we go predicting the Sixteen man practice squad. We don’t know who the Buccaneers will pick up from other teams. This is a projection after Tampa Bay has chosen its 53-man roster.
QB Ryan Griffin
WR Jerreth Stearns WR Devin Thompkins WR Cyril Grayson
RB Patrick Laird
Te Ko Kieft
OL Brandon Walton OL Sadarius Hutcherson OL Dylan Cook
DL Elijah Ponder
LB Andre Anthony LB Olakunle Fatuksai LB Jordan Young
DB Chris Cooper DB Dee Delaney DB JJ Russell