clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

NFL Draft Order 2015: The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tanked for the 1st Pick

It is always said that NFL teams don't tank, but it sure looks like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers did it today.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

People within NFL teams always scoff at the thought of tanking for the first pick.  There are a million reasons why people that are actually involved with the team shouldn't tank, but it sure sounds like that is exactly what the Tampa Bay Buccaneers did today.

Don't believe me?  Let's examine the evidence:

-Rookie (ROOKIE!) WR Mike Evans didn't play a single snap in the second half according to the Tampa Bay Times.  I understand that a 2-13 team wants to get a look at some young guys, but Evans is a rookie.  He is a guy that is going to be a cornerstone of the rebuilding project.  Why wouldn't you have him out there in the second half if you were trying to win the game?

Here is what Evans had to say about it after the game (from the same Tampa Bay Times article):

"The whole second half I didn’t play,’’ said Evans, who caught his 12th touchdown of the season, a club record. "They just pulled me because I was gassed. It was (the coach’s) decision.’’


Lavonte David, another one of the Bucs best players, didn't play at all in the second half. Here is what he had to say about it:

"I guess I understand why,’’ David said. "We wanted to get everybody else some playing time or whatever. They told me I wasn't playing the second half, so I just took it for what it was."

But those are just players, right? They don't always have the best explanations for things. Here is how Lovie Smith, head coach of the Bucs, explained it:

"Yeah, we didn’t have some of our best players right at the end but the guys we had in there we felt like we could move the ball and be able to win with,’’ Bucs coach Lovie Smtih said unapologetically.

Let me translate that for you, "We wanted to lose and get the first pick, so we took our best players out of the game to make sure that happened."

Of course I wouldn't care anything about this if it wasn't the Titans that got screwed out of the pick, but it was. The Titans tried hard at sucking all year long. They signed a coach who is terrible. I feel like they earned that pick and got screwed out of it. That's what she said.