Yardbarker Horiz

2012 NFL Draft Countdown

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Draft Class Rankings: Buccaneer Games Played

When thinking about how to rank the Buccaneer Drafts, one of the first measures which came to mind was how each contributed to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  Not just by being drafted nor by making the roster; the player can only have an impact on the franchise by being on the field on game day.

To that end, I have constructed the following graph of the total number of games played as a Buccaneer for all players in the specified draft class:

Clearly, the 1987 Draft Class and the 1997 Draft Class made big contributions to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on game days and are far and away the two most significant draft classes by this measure (raw data will be posted in the near future when I'm done playing with it).  A clear cut winner cannot be established yet as 1997 Draftee Ronde Barber has not completed his career.

On the flip side, the 1989 Draft Class and the 2002 Draft Class have to be considered (as entire classes) to be major underperformers.  It's too early to make the call on the 2008 - 2010 drafts as many of those players are still on the roster.

The two "low point" marks on the graph appear to (in general) divide the classes as well as the fortunes of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers into three significant parts.  The pre-1988 era was one of inconsistency and mixed results on the field.  The 1990-2001 era which ended with a SuperBowl shows a generally larger per-class contribution, and the post 2002 era which we are in now.

We'll be keeping our eyes on these trends and look for others as we continue to break down the Tampa Bay Buccaneers draft fortunes!

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