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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs' Release Week Six Depth Chart: Young Receivers Step Up

Rookie Trey Palmer and second-year man Deven Thompkins saw a higher percentage of offensive plays in Week Four after an injury to Mike Evans, and both young receivers caught touchdown passes


Each week during the regular season, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' communications department publishes a "Game Release" to aid the media in coverage of their upcoming game. Within that release are a number of documents regarding the player roster, including a depth chart, which lists the pecking order at every position on offense, defense and special teams.

Each game week, we will be taking a closer look at that depth chart, pointing out any changes or relevant notes from the previous game. Let's start on offense. Rookies are marked with an asterisk. Players we will be discussing in depth are highlighted in bold text.


  • WR: Mike Evans, Trey Palmer*, Rakim Jarrett *
  • WR: Chris Godwin, Deven Thompkins
  • LT: Tristan Wirfs, Justin Skule
  • LG: Matt Feiler, Aaron Stinnie
  • C: Robert Hainsey
  • RG: Cody Mauch *, Nick Leverett
  • RT: Luke Goedeke, Brandon Walton
  • TE: Cade Otton, David Wells
  • TE: Ko Kieft, Payne Durham *
  • QB: Baker Mayfield, Kyle Trask
  • RB: Rachaad White, Sean Tucker *, Ke'Shawn Vaughn

Mike Evans left the game in New Orleans in Week Four with a hamstring injury shortly before halftime, having played 26 snaps and caught three passes for 40 yards. His absence for the entire second half meant much more playing time for young wideouts Deven Thompkins and Trey Palmer, and both stepped up in a big way. Palmer played 53 offensive snaps, or 75% of the total, while Thompkins was on the field for 45 snaps, and both players found the end zone in the Bucs' 26-9 win. That was Palmer's biggest workload so far in his rookie campaign and he scored for the second time in four games. Thompkins fell one shy of his career high in snap totals but did match his best single-game total with four catches.

Fourth-year running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn replaced rookie Sean Tucker as the second runner behind Rachaad White, getting 21 snaps after not playing at all on offense during the Bucs' first three games. Tucker, who had averaged about 10 offensive snaps per game over the first three weeks, only saw action on special teams against the Saints. The Bucs used "11" personnel – three receivers, one tight end and one back – on 75% of their plays, so tight ends Ko Kieft (15 snaps) and David Wells (eight snaps) saw relatively little playing time. Rookie tight end Payne Durham was inactive for the fourth game in a row.


  • DL: Calijah Kancey *, Mike Greene
  • NT: Vita Vea, Greg Gaines
  • DL: Logan Hall, William Gholston
  • OLB: Joe Tryon-Shoyinka, Yaya Diaby * , Markees Watts *
  • ILB: Devin White, K.J. Britt
  • ILB: Lavonte David, SirVocea Dennis *
  • OLB: Shaquil Barrett, Anthony Nelson, Cam Gill
  • CB: Jamel Dean, Zyon McCollum, Derrek Pitts *
  • CB: Carlton Davis, Dee Delaney, Josh Hayes *
  • S: Antoine Winfield Jr., Kaevon Merriweather *
  • S: Ryan Neal, Christian Izien *

Defensive back Dee Delaney, who played the majority of the Bucs' Monday night game against Philadelphia at outside corner after Jamel Dean suffered an injury, converted to safety in Week Four. He was pressed into action almost immediately after starting safety Ryan Neal suffered a concussion on the game's second play. Delaney played the rest of the way opposite Antoine Winfield Jr. and contributed three tackles and a pass defensed.

Zyon McCollum also continued to fill in for the entire game at one of the outside corner spots, in this case playing in place of Dean. He had spent the previous two games on the other side in place of Carlton Davis, who returned to action in New Orleans and played every defensive snap. McCollum was praised by his coaches and teammates after the game for a strong effort that included four tackles and a pass defensed while the Saints were held to 127 net passing yards.

Vita Vea continued his trend of seeing a higher percentage of playing time than he did a year ago. In this case, he was on the field for 44 of the team's 65 defensive plays, for a 68% timeshare that was the most among all 10 Buccaneers who got into the game on the defensive front. Vea turned that playing time into three tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble.


  • P: Jake Camarda
  • PK: Chase McLaughlin
  • KO: Jake Camarda
  • H: Jake Camarda
  • LS: Zach Triner
  • PR: Deven Thompkins, Trey Palmer *
  • KR: Deven Thompkins, Rachaad White

Chase McLaughlin connected on a critical 51-yard field goal early in the fourth quarter and is now two-for-two from beyond 50 this season. He made both field goals and both extra points he attempted, and those were his only four plays of the game as the Bucs unsuccessfully went for two after their last touchdown.

The Bucs had a total of 26 special teams plays overall, and a quartet of defenders led the way with 21 of those snaps: linebackers K.J. Britt and J.J. Russell, outside linebacker Cam Gill and rookie cornerback Josh Hayes. Kieft was next with 19 special teams snaps. Russell reverted to the practice squad after the contest following his third game-day elevation; he is now out of elevation options for the season. Rookie cornerback Keenan Isaac was also elevated from the practice squad for the Week Four game and got in on 11 special teams plays.

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