Let the trade talks begin
So much for intrigue.
The worst kept secret in the NFL draft is coming true as the Oakland Raiders are set to select LSU quarterback JaMarcus Russell with the first overall pick.
That means that the Detroit Lions hold the leverage and the right to take Georgia Tech receiver Calvin Johnson, arguably one of the best pro prospects in years.
Bucs general manager Bruce Allen has had serious discussions with Lions general manager Matt Millen about trading up to the No. 2 choice to take Johnson. It's more likely, however, that the Lions will select Johnson with willingness to keep him while listening to offers.
The Cleveland Browns, who pick third overall, are expected to select between Wisconsin tackle Joe Thomas, Notre Dame quartertback Brady Quinn and Oklahoma running back Adrian Peterson. Right now, it looks like it might be Thomas.
That could leave the Bucs having to choose between Thomas, Clemson defensive end Gaines Adams and Louisville defensive tackle Amobi Okoye.
According to the draft value chart, the Bucs would have to send both their second-round picks to Detroit to move up to spots. But they could get there with a combination of picks and players. Among those veterans who could be part of a deal includes digruntled defensive back Brian Kelly and defensive end Simeon Rice.
The Bucs most likely will look to upgrade their defense, which has six projected starters over the age of 30. One scenario would have the Bucs picking Adams and then simply swapping players with the Lions.
Still a few minutes before the draft kicks off and the Bucs are going to be in the thick of it early.