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Friday, Oct 20, 2017
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Analyst: Bucs should dump Talib, draft Claiborne

PALM BEACH - The Tampa Bay Buccaneers should draft Morris Claiborne with the No. 5 pick and then release troubled cornerback Aqib Talib, according to Fox NFL analyst Tim Ryan. Speaking Monday at the start of the league's annual spring meeting, Ryan said the Bucs can no longer count on Talib, who faces a trial next month in Texas on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. "You can't trust Talib -- his behavior pattern tells you that,'' said Ryan, who also co-hosts "Movin' the Chains'' on Sirius XM NFL Radio. "Even if he gets acquitted, you can't trust him. How many opportunities has he had? It's time to wave goodbye. He's one of the most talented corners in this league, but you can't control him. When it gets to crunch time, he reacts with poor judgment.'' Ryan said Claiborne, who won the 2011 Jim Thorpe Award at LSU as the nation's top defensive back, is a good fit for the Buccaneers and new head coach Greg Schiano.
Unlike last year, Tampa Bay was very active when free agency opened two weeks ago, signing Chargers wide receiver Vincent Jackson, Saints guard Carl Nicks and Lions cornerback Eric Wright to lucrative contracts. "They were aggressive to make a statement to their fans and to improve the football team,'' Ryan said. "Going into 2012, I don't think a lot of Buc fans were convinced winning was the No. 1 priority in Tampa. When they fired Jon Gruden and hired Raheem Morris, not a lot of people thought the Glazers were putting winning first. And I think those fans felt exactly the same way when Schiano was hired. "I don't know Greg, and I've heard good things about him, but he wasn't exactly a hot name that came off the list. I do think ownership had something to prove when free agency began. They had tremendous cap space and I think they made good moves.'' Ryan said the addition of Jackson, a 6-foot-5 target who has averaged 17.5 yards per catch in seven NFL seasons, will energize Tampa Bay's passing game. "I think of Josh Freeman's struggles and the regression of Mike Williams last year … what Jackson will do is open up the coverage,'' Ryan said. "When Josh gets to the line, I guarantee eight out of 10 times he's going to know what the coverage is, just based on the caliber of player Jackson is. You can go out of frame and Jackson can still go up and get the ball. His ball skills are that good. "I think Josh will reel it in and not try to win every game with his arm, but the big question in Tampa is are the Bucs going to have to win every game 38-35, because there's still a long way to go with that defense.''
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