QB Luke McCown started four games as a rookie for Cleveland last year
Not content to sit on their eight second-day picks in the 2005 Draft, the Buccaneers moved aggressively early on Sunday, trading a sixth-round selection to the Cleveland Browns for quarterback Luke McCown.
The pick was one of two sixth-rounders the Bucs owned, number 203 overall. It was obtained from San Diego, along with the third-round pick used on tackle Chris Colmer on Saturday, in the Keenan McCardell trade last fall.
McCown, a second-year quarterback out of Louisiana Tech, could prove to be excellent value for a sixth-round pick. A fourth-round selection by the Browns last year, he started four games last year as a rookie. McCown appeared in five games total in his brief Cleveland career, completing 48 of 98 passes for 608 yards, four touchdowns and seven interceptions.
As has the rest of the Buccaneers' 2005 draft, the trade for McCown addresses a very obvious need. Behind starter Brian Griese and promising third-year man Chris Simms, the Bucs had only one quarterback before the trade, reclamation project Akili Smith. Smith is currently playing in the NFL Europe League.
The last time the Buccaneers traded a pick for a veteran player during draft weekend was in 1999, when they sent a sixth-rounder to Baltimore for Eric Zeier.
McCown comes from a talented football family. His brother, Josh, plays for the Arizona Cardinals and was one of several quarterbacks to draw starts in 2004. Josh McCown was a third-round pick by the Cardinals in 2002. Another McCown brother, Randy, started at quarterback for three years at Texas A&M.
At Louisiana Tech, Luke McCown shattered most of the schools' career passing and total offense records. He completed 1,088 of 1,827 passes for 12,994 yards and 88 touchdowns, breaking the attempts, completions and yardage records of Tim Rattay. Only Ty Detmer of Brigham Young had more passing yards and touchdowns in the history of the Western Athletic Conference.
Overall, McCown played in 44 games and made 43 starts. As a senior, McCown started every game and completed 246 of 432 passes for 3,246 yards and 19 touchdowns. Those were a near duplication of his junior totals: 296 of 505 for 3,539 yards and 19 TDs.
Even with the trade, the Bucs still have six more picks to exercise on Sunday. They own two picks in the fifth and three in the seventh, and have one remaining choice early in the sixth round.