Oct 6, 2012; Madison, WI, USA; Illinois Fighting Illini defensive tackle Akeem Spence (94) prior to the game against the Wisconsin Badgers at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

NFL Draft 2013: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Select Akeem Spence


We saw plenty of trades earlier in the draft, but they came in quick succession to start the draft’s third day. After the Philadelphia Eagles traded a seventh round pick to move up and draft Matt Barkley, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers traded up to the 100th overall pick to draft Illinois defensive tackle Akeem Spence.

Spence is a big, physical defensive tackle that will be able to come in and help out Pro Bowler Gerald McCoy in the middle of the Bucs defensive frontline. Tampa Bay’s front was one of the better aspects of Greg Schiano’s first season, but they lost some pieces in the offseason and were looking to fortify the middle of the line.

Some thought that the Buccaneers would take a bug defensive tackle with their third round pick, but they surprised many and went quarterback instead. Seeing that the depth of talent is dwindling, the Bucs moved up and swapped picks with the Raiders to get Spence.

The Buccaneers have put together one of the finer drafts this year, which says a lot considering they didn’t have a first round pick. Darrelle Revis was essentially drafted by the Buccaneers with the 13th overall pick they sent to New York, and they grabbed another physical corner in Johnthan Banks with their second round selection. The surprise of the draft was Tampa Bay selecting N.C. State quarterback Mike Glennon with their third round pick.

Mark Dominik, the Buccaneers general manager, knows what he’s doing and has earned the faith of fans and analysts around the league. Spence fills a need and the Bucs could afford to move up to take him. Tampa Bay is still trying to deal running back LeGarrette Blount, which could get them an additional late round pick this year.

Tags: NFL Popular Tampa Bay Buccaneers