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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Doubters Fueled Kwon Alexander's Fire

After being selected in the fourth round of the draft, Alexander was motivated to prove his doubters wrong.

Photos of linebacker Kwon Alexander from the 2015 season.

The Buccaneers knew they had a special player fall into their laps when they selected Kwon Alexander in the fourth round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

"We moved up and wanted to ensure we got a guy who a lot of us, including myself, had as one of the top outside linebackers in the draft," Bucs General Manager Jason said following the draft. "We were surprised and obviously excited that he was there for us. We moved up, we thought we had to to ensure that we got him. Kwon Alexander is an explosive, fast player that's going to get a shot at starting outside or us."

Not every draft analyst felt the same way, though.

"I don't think he has great instincts or is real physical at the point of attack," NFL scout Chris Landry told, "but he can play in the NFL."

NFL Media's Mark Dulgerian felt Alexander's role would be primarily on special teams as a rookie.  

"Tampa Bay selects a weakside sideline to sideline player who can learn from Lavonte David," Dulgerian wrote. "He should be a standout special teams player early in his career."

Those types of reviews caught Alexander's attention. He came across Dulgerian's review recently and responded on Twitter.

"I'll never forget this," he wrote.

Alexander, of course, went on to earn the job as the Bucs' starting middle linebacker. He was projected to play on the outside but was moved to the middle shortly after arriving in Tampa Bay. He finished second on the team in tackles in 2015, despite missing four games. On two different occasions, he was named the NFL's Rookie of the Week. He was also selected as the NFC's Defensive Player of the Week for his performance in Week 8.

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