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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Training Camp Goals: 2024 Buccaneers, Numbers 10-19

As we continue to make our way down the Bucs' numerical camp roster, we look at the potential goals for players such as rookie wide receiver Jalen McMillan and first-year cornerback Keenan Isaac


The NFL's relatively recent relaxation of their jersey-number guidelines, which now allow for a lot more options at most positions, has led to some interesting groupings on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' numerical roster. When we started our 'Camp Goal' series on Monday with the players wearing jerseys number zero to nine, we looked at two outside linebackers, two running backs, two quarterbacks, a wide receiver, a kicker, a punter, a safety and even an off-ball linebacker. (There were 11 players in that group because both outside linebacker Joe Tryon-Shoyinka and rookie wideout Kameron Johnson are currently wearing number nine.)

However, as we move on to the next group – players wearing jerseys numbered 10-19 – we find a lot more uniformity. Other than one young cornerback coming back for a second Buccaneers camp, this set is all receivers and quarterbacks. Granted, the six pass-catchers in this group represent a very wide variety of camp situations, but we're mostly going to be discussing guys who throw it and catch it in this one.

Leading up to the Buccaneers' 2024 training camp, we are going straight down that numerical roster, in jersey groupings of 10, to suggest what could be the individual objectives for each player this summer. As a whole, the Bucs will be trying to absorb their offensive and defensive playbooks and determine the best 53-man roster they can make out of an initial group of 91. The goals of each player, however, can differ significantly depending upon situation and experience.

#10 WR Trey Palmer: Palmer had a promising rookie season after being drafted in the sixth round, emerging as the primary third receiver in "11" personnel with Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. Palmer's final numbers weren't gaudy – 39 catches for 385 yards and three touchdowns, but he made some key plays down the stretch as the Bucs were chasing a division title. He also affected the offense in ways that didn't show up on the stat sheet, providing some 'gravity' with his high-end speed to pull defenders away from Evans and Godwin. Palmer could fill that same role in 2024 and he would likely want to work on eliminating some of the drops he had last year. However, there should be clear competition for the third-receiver role, most prominently from third-round rookie Jalen McMillan. Thus, as will be the case for multiple players in this year's camp, Palmer will have showing up well in that competition as a primary objective.

#11 QB John Wolford: The Bucs signed Wolford to be their third quarterback in 2023 behind Baker Mayfield and Kyle Trask, who at the time were competing for the starting job. Wolford started the season on Tampa Bay's practice squad but got promoted to the active roster after the Rams showed interest in bringing him back. The Bucs appreciated not only what the whip-smart Wolford did on the practice field last fall but also how he served almost as another coach in the QB meeting room, and they signed him to another one-year contract in March. Wolford's camp goal would presumably be to convince the Bucs' coaching staff that he should be on the 53-man roster when the regular season arrives. He could conceivably do that by jumping Trask on the depth chart to be the number-two behind Mayfield. Even without depth chart concerns, Wolford could show the value of the previous experience he has working in an offense under new coordinator Liam Coen.

#13 WR Mike Evans: Given all that Evans has accomplished, including a record 10 straight 1,000-yard seasons to begin his career, and how well he played last year, there isn't much for Evans to prove in his 11th training camp. He's proved he is a productive fit in any style of offense; last year, he was a beast on contested catches outside the numbers and was consistently able to get deep behind the defense. Still, Evans is learning a new offense along with his teammates, so he does have plenty of work to do in training camp. Getting that down and getting to the start of the regular season in perfect health would likely be the two main goals for the five-time Pro Bowler.

#14 WR Chris Godwin: Like Evans, Godwin has little to prove as he heads into his eighth preseason. However, he does have a specific task at hand as camp begins, because Coen wants him to go back to playing primarily in the slot, as he had done for several seasons before transitioning to more of an outside role under Dave Canales in 2023. Godwin could play a role similar to what the Rams have done with Cooper Kupp, and he's also another year removed from his late-2021 knee injury, so he could be in line for one of his most productive seasons yet. Like Evans, Godwin would likely have full health as a top-level goal at the end of camp and the preseason, but also like Evans he has an unflagging work ethic, so he's sure to be grinding through another camp. In this case, the goal will be to figure out exactly what his role in the offense will be.

#15 WR Jalen McMillan: As noted earlier, McMillan should be one of the main competitors to win the primary third receiver position after the Bucs selected him in the third round in April, which makes his main camp goal pretty obvious. Beyond that, McMillan, who played mostly in the slot last season at Washington but has previous experience on the outside, will be looking to prove that he can handle a variety of roles. Both he and his coaches stated confidence in his ability to do exactly that while OTAs were going on, so he's starting from a good spot. In addition to that third-receiver gig, McMillan could show that he would be a good option to fill in if either Evans or Godwin has to miss some time.

#16 CB Keenan Isaac: Isaac was an undrafted rookie a year ago, and his first NFL camp was definitely a success because he landed a spot on the practice squad to start the season. He was elevated on game day multiple times and saw action in two games, and was even promoted to the active roster for about a month in November. The Bucs were quick to re-sign Isaac for 2024 when his practice squad contract expired at the end of the year. Isaac got all of those opportunities because he performed well in the preseason, leading the team with three passes defensed, forcing a fumble and ranking third on the defense with 11 tackles. Now that he has established a foundation for his NFL career, Isaac will head into this year's camp looking to take the next step and secure a spot on the active roster. The Bucs will have a new-look cornerback group in 2024 after trading Carlton Davis to Detroit and signing veteran free agents Bryce Hall and Tavierre Thomas, so the depth chart behind Jamel Dean and Zyon McCollum is currently wide open. Isaac will try to take advantage.

#17 WR Raleigh Webb: This will be Webb's first training camp in Tampa, as he was signed to the Bucs' practice squad last November. However, he has previous been to camps with the Ravens and Patriots and has had extended practice squad runs in Baltimore and Miami, so he shouldn't be overwhelmed by the process. While every player should and will be fighting for a spot on the 53-man roster in the regular season, it would be a worthwhile side goal for any player in Webb's position to gain a practice squad footing if that roster spot is not immediately available. At 6-2 and 204 pounds, the Citadel product is one of the bigger candidates among the team's group of young receiver hopefuls – roughly the same size as Chris Godwin – so he could hope to demonstrate that he can use that size to his advantage in a way some of his competitors cannot.

#18 WR Rakim Jarrett: Jarrett made the Buccaneers' 53-man roster to start the season last summer after arriving as an undrafted free agent out of Maryland. He made a good showing in the preseason, leading the Bucs with 132 receiving yards on seven catches. Jarrett was not only on the roster as a rookie but he was active for each of the first 10 games before landing on injured reserve with a quad injury. He returned from that list in Week 18 but was inactive for the next three games. In the same game that he was injured, Jarrett turned in his biggest play of the season, a 41-yard catch at San Francisco. So Jarrett's career got off to a great start with his surprise inclusion on the active roster, but the injury somewhat stalled his momentum. Thus, he will head into his second camp looking to re-establish his spot in the top six in the Bucs' receiving corps and to show that a full NFL offseason has helped him to take his game to the next level.

#19 QB Zack Annexstad: Annexstad is the first undrafted rookie quarterback the Buccaneers have signed since Reid Sinnett in 2021, and he hasn't been able to practice with his new team yet while recovering from a knee injury suffered last November. Therefore, Annexstad will surely start camp fourth on the Bucs' QB depth chart behind Mayfield, Trask and Wolford. A realistic goal for a player in that position would be to secure a spot on the practice squad – though he will surely aim higher, as he should – and to put up some good preseason game tape for any other teams that might be interested. Annexstad's first order of business will be to catch up physically with the rest of the team after taking only mental reps during the spring.

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