Tampa Bay Buccaneers Draft: Round Five, Pick 26 (126) WR Kenny Bell, Nebraska


Kenny Bell looks like a scrub and a stoner in his NFL.com draft profile picture. But if this guy can play, who cares that he looks like he crawled out of a dumpster. It sounds like he can play, and we’ve seen his name intermittently sprinkled in mock drafts in some good spots. This is the first receiver added to the Buccaneers in the Jameis Winston era.


Can get on top of cornerbacks quickly and can ramp up acceleration to create enough air space for quarterbacks to target him up top. Has made big catches at big times for Nebraska. Displays concentration and boundary awareness up the field. Has big-play ability that was untapped at times at Nebraska. Shredded with little body fat. Smart player and very well-coached in college. Plus competitiveness when going up to snag a pass against defenders. Ball winner.


Has some stiffness to his routes. Doesn’t get into and out of breaks as cleanly as scouts would like to see. Likely limited to a roll as an outside threat. Thin frame and has struggled at staying on his route when muscled by big corners. Needs to diversify his approach to getting off the line of scrimmage on the next level.


Round 4 or 5


Nate Washington


Lanky, vertical wide receiver with a second gear. He likes to lull cornerbacks to sleep before hitting the gas and getting over the top of them for big plays. Bell is a little more straight-lined than some teams are looking for, but with reliable hands and an ability to make plays on the ball down the field, he has starter’s traits as a potential No. 2 WR in the league.

A lot of times, receivers selected in this portion of the draft end up hurt or on practice squads and don’t ever end up catching more than 15 balls in their rookie year. If Bell can catch 30 or 40, that will be a helluva rookie season.

JoeBucsFan.com says that Bell will make the team and be an instant upgrade over Robert Herron. He better be. I guess the reality is, a couple of these guys selected by Tampa are going to be busts. It’s just inevitable. It’s only the Hall of Fame type drafts where you hit one everyone.

The Nate Washington comp is fine with me. That guy has had a solid NFL career.


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