On Wednesday, NFL media analyst Gil Brandt broke down his All-Rookie team for the 2015 season. Two Buccaneers – Jameis Winston and Donovan Smith – were selected for his team.
It's one of several awards that have been rolling in for the Buccaneers' talented rookie class. Earlier this month, Brandt's colleague, Daniel Jeremiah, went on record saying the Buccaneers had the best draft class in the league. ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper also re-graded the Bucs' draft class from a B- at the start of the season to an A at the end of it. Winston and Smith, along with Kwon Alexander and Ali Marpet, were also selected for Pro Football Focus' All-Rookie team.
Winston finished the season with 4,042 passing yards, the second-most in Buccaneer history and third-most ever by a rookie. For his efforts, he has been named Rookie of the Year by Kiper and Pro Football Focus. Winston could also win the NFL and Associated Press' Rookie of the Year awards, which will be announced the night before the Super Bowl.
"He started off slowly, tossing seven picks in his first four games, but improved as the season wore on, putting up a touchdown-to-interception ratio of 16:8 over his last 12 games," Brandt wrote. "It looks like Tampa Bay has found its franchise quarterback."
A photo timeline of Jameis Winston's rookie year with the Buccaneers.
Smith stepped in and played every snap for the Bucs at left tackle. He and Winston were the only Buccaneer rookies to play every down for the team in 2015.
Other players selected for Brandt's All-Rookie team include Minnesota's Stefon Diggs, Los Angeles' Todd Gurley, Oakland's Amari Cooper and Buffalo's Ronald Darby. For the full list, click HERE.