TAMPA, FL. – Bucs GM Jason Licht didn’t give away anything specific on how or who they’ll draft later this week when meeting with reporters in his annual pre-draft press conference.
The biggest change Thursday night will be new Head Coach Todd Bowles sitting in the war room alongside GM Jason Licht. But listening to Licht it really won’t be much of a difference at all because former Head Coach, now Consultant Bruce Arians, will be in the room with Bowles and Licht.
“I’ve been meeting more with Todd now as the head coach,” Licht said. More one-on-one and more in some group settings too. Bruce has still been involved in our meetings. I meet with Bruce periodically and he’s gonna be involved here as we put the final touches on our draft. So our philosophy hasn’t changed.”
The Bucs don’t pick until 27th of the first round and have 6 picks in all. The Bucs with Tom Brady back are in a win-now mode, but Licht says you also have to think about the future.
“You can’t push players, like I’ve said before, of a perceived need too high just because you need that position, otherwise they’re going to trump really good players at different positions. We could take a player literally, at any position on our team and if they are a great player, we’re going to be happy we did it. So, it’s a delicate balance of wanting to win now and also looking into the future.
Licht also said the status of defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh and tight end Rob Gronkowski really won’t affect how they draft. Licht said they are looking for good players and the door is open for Suh and Gronk.
“We will leave the door open on a lot of cases whether they are ex-Bucs or have been with us or players are on the street. Doors are open and we will always keep in constant communication.”
Licht says they don’t confer with Brady regarding draft decisions. Licht says he’s not concerned that Brady isn’t here right now for the start of offseason workouts and the Bucs haven’t had any discussions with Brady on playing past this season.