- The Bucs finished their 2014 draft the same way they started it, by taking a receiver who could add big plays to a new-look offense
- Wyoming WR Robert Herron caught 152 passes in four seasons and was second in the nation in yards per catch as a junior
- Small but extremely fast, Herron will have a chance to compete for the slot-receiver role in Tampa, and perhaps return kicks
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers' sixth and final pick of the 2014 NFL Draft was Wyoming wide receiver Robert Herron, a speed merchant who will compete for the slot receiver and kick return roles with his new NFL team.
The selection of Herron capped a rather unique first draft for General Manager Jason Licht and Head Coach Lovie Smith, as all six players picked by the team play on the offensive side of the ball. That had never before happened in 38 previous Buccaneer drafts. Tampa Bay's weekend efforts began and ended at its position of perhaps greatest need, wide receiver, and with players of contrasting styles.
First-rounder Mike Evans, the seventh overall selection is a huge target adept at coming down with contested catches while Herron is a burner who can turn short passes into long gains or take the top off the defense. The Bucs' passing game also got welcome additions in 6-5 tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins and tailback Charles Sims, both gifted receivers.
Herron's calling card has been his speed, ever since his days as a high school track star in Los Angeles. The 5-9, 193-pound was used at both receiving and running back both in high school and at Wyoming. In four seasons with the Cowboys, he appeared in 42 games with 27 starts and combined 2,030 receiving yards with 310 yards on the ground and a handful of kickoff returns. He tallied 152 total catches and scored 20 times, capped by a senior season in which he caught a career-best 72 passes for 937 yards and nine scores.
Herron was limited to eight games as a junior in 2012 but still racked up 657 yards and eight touchdowns on just 31 receptions. That gave him a per-catch average of 21.2 that ranked second in the nation among major college players with at least 30 grabs. When he arrived in Laramie in 2010, he stepped into a system run by then-Cowboys Offensive Coordinator Marcus Arroyo, who is now the Buccaneers' quarterbacks coach. He saw more action out of the backfield that season, averaging 5.9 yards per carry on 40 handoffs while catching just six passes.
Wyoming WR Robert Herron scored 17 touchdowns over his last two seasons in Laramie
Herron is the first Wyoming player to hear his name called on an NFL Draft weekend since defensive back defensive back Chris Prosinski went to the Jaguars in 2011. He is also the first player the Buccaneers have ever drafted out of Wyoming. As the 185th selection overall, Herron is also the earliest final pick Tampa Bay has ever made in the draft, just a few picks earlier than the team's capper of running back Mike James at 189 last spring.
Like the rest of his all-offense Class of 2014, Herron will fly immediately to Tampa and join the team on Sunday. Due to a draft that fell two weeks later than usual in the spring schedule, teams can bring their newest players in right away; Herron and the rest will be on the practice field by