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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Senior Bowl: 5 Defensive Players to Watch

The Buccaneers only have one first-round pick and one second-round pick, so instead of listing five of the Senior Bowl's top players that will all be drafted in rounds one and two, we decided to pick five players projected to be available throughout the draft's seven rounds.


Five players to keep your eyes on during Saturday's Senior Bowl.



1. Owamagbe Odighizuwa, DE – UCLA
Projected round: 1-2
Odighizuwa might be the best defensive end playing in the Senior Bowl. He's 6-3 and 270 pounds, making him big enough to play on the interior while remaining fast enough to beat tackles on the outside. At times, he played as a stand-up defensive end in UCLA's 3-4 system. Durability could be a concern after two major hip surgeries caused him to miss the 2013 season. He was only a full-time starter for one year at UCLA in 2014, but he saw action in each of his four seasons.*

Other defensive ends to keep an eye on: Trey Flowers (Arkansas), Preston Smith (Mississippi State), Henry Anderson (Stanford).2. Denzel Perryman, ILB – Miami
Projected round: 2
Perryman, a third-team AP All-American and Butkus Award finalist in 2014, is one of the most coveted inside linebackers playing in the Senior Bowl. He's 5-11, 242 and an excellent tackler. He only missed one game while at Miami and was voted a team captain. Perryman is aggressive in the box and quick enough to drop into coverage. Experts suggest strong Senior Bowl and combine performances could propel him into the first round.

Other inside linebackers to keep an eye on:* Hayes Pullard (USC),  Stephone Anthony (Clemson), Jeff Luc (Cincinatti).

The North team's roster for Saturday's Senior Bowl.

  1. Doran Grant, CB – Ohio State*
    *Projected round: 3

    Grant is a versatile and experienced cornerback who played an instrumental role on Ohio State's 2014 national championship team. He recorded five tackles, one for a loss, against Oregon in the National Championship, earned seven tackles in the Sugar Bowl against Alabama and picked off two passes in Ohio State's Big Ten Championship Game victory over Wisconsin. He played in all 54 of his career games with the Buckeyes and made 29 starts. He was a co-captain this past season.

Other cornerbacks to watch:* Quinten Rollins (Miami, OH), Senquez Golson (Ole Miss), Steven Nelson (Oregon State), Kevin White (TCU).4. OLB: Lynden Trail, OLB – Norfolk State*
Projected round: 4*
Trail is an intriguing prospect, as any six-foot-six outside linebacker from an FCS school would be. He finished 2014 with 91 tackles, 11.5 tackles for loss and five sacks. He was a finalist for the Buck Buchanan Award for the second year in a row, which is given to the FCS' top defensive player. He is an excellent speed rusher and could be moved onto the line of scrimmage as a defensive end when he reaches the NFL.

The South team's roster for Saturday's Senior Bowl.

Other outside linebackers to watch:* Zack Hodges (Harvard), Geneo Grissom (Oklahoma), Lorenzo Mauldin (Louisville).5. Imoan Claiborne, S – Northwestern St.*
Projected round: 6*
Claiborne will have an opportunity to prove his worth while competing against tough competition at the Senior Bowl. He was a standout at Northwestern State, accounting for seven of the team's 30 turnovers and 48 tackles in 10.5 games in 2014. He also led the team in pass deflections, despite rarely being thrown at. He had eight tackles and a pass deflection when Northwestern State met tenth-ranked Baylor in September. Claiborne has a 3.8 GPA and was a FCS All-American.

*Other safeties to watch: Cody Prewitt (Ole Miss), Kurtis Drummond (Michigan State), Ladarius Gunter (Miami), Ibraheim Campbell (Northwestern).


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