By: Justin PawlowskiBy Justin Pawlowski

Leading up to Draft day on April 25th, I will be “making the case” for different players to be selected or not selected by the Bucs with the 13th overall selection.

For each player, I will give reasons why the Buccaneers should strongly consider that player and why they should pass on that player as well.

Here. We. Go.

With the 13th pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers select Tyler Eifert – Tight End – Notre Dame

Eifert’s become a very popular name around these parts recently.  Some of the most notable draft analysts like Daniel Jeremiah, Charles Davis, and others have given the Buccaneers Tyler Eifert in their mock drafts. The Tampa Tribune’s Roy Cummings named Eifert as one of three players he believes will end up as the 13th pick in this draft.

The Bucs struggled mightily in 2012 to attack the middle of any opposing defense.  Dallas Clark was just not fast enough to get separation against linebackers and safeties, while Luke Stocker has yet to develop into any type of threat in the passing game.  While Clark is yet to be resigned, the Buccaneers did sign Tom Crabtree away from the Packers. In his 3 year career, Crabtree has a total of 18 receptions for 302 yards and 4 touchdowns.

It’s pretty apparent that the Bucs could look towards this draft as a way to upgrade their tight end position.  Eifert is the top rated tight end in this draft.  He is a threat down the field and possesses excellent hands and long arms to go up and make a tough catch.  Eifert could provide Josh Freeman a security blanket as an option if his two receivers are covered down the field.  Freeman’s overall confidence could rise with a player like Eifert becoming a reliable target over the middle.

As good as Eifert might be, the argument against him is that he does not play on the defensive side of the ball.  We do not know how much Mike Sullivan would like to use the tight end because he did not have one last year to truly use.  We do know that the cornerbacks well be asked to play man coverage and the defensive line will be asked to rush the passer.

The 13th pick is a high enough pick where a team wants to get a player who can make a major impact on their team.  Eifert is a good player, but there are some questions as to whether he is an elite or has potential to be an elite tight end.  Other options at tight end include Zack Ertz (Stanford), Gavin Escobar (San Diego St.), and one of my favorites Travis Kelce (Cincinnati).

Another debate could be, if the Bucs were to go with an offensive player with their 13th pick, which player would have the bigger impact: Tyler Eifert or Tavon Austin?

Well, there you have it.  The arguments are there to either draft or to pass on Notre Dame TE Tyler Eifert.  Which way would you go?  Call The Commish during his show heard weekdays 9-noon and let him know!

Tavon Austin – WR – West Virginia

Xavier Rhodes – CB – Florida St.

Jarvis Jones – OLB – Georgia

Desmond Trufant – CB – Washington

Margus Hunt – DE – SMU

For updates on the Buccaneers off-season moves in free agency and the NFL Draft, be sure to follow Justin Pawlowski and 98.7 The Fan on twitter.

Catch The Commish weekdays from 9-12 on 98.7 The Fan.