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Buccaneers Trade For OT Cody Mauch in Round 2 of the 2023 NFL Draft

The newest Tampa Bay Buccaneer is a tough, gritty, and versatile offensive tackle from a small school. Exactly what the doctor ordered.
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The Tampa Bay Buccaneers traded the 179th pick (6th round selection) to the Green Bay Packers in order to move up from 50 to 48 in the second round of the NFL Draft to select offensive tackle, Cody Mauch, out of North Dakota State University. 

Listed at 6'5", 302 pounds, Mauch fits the bill that Buccaneers' GM, Jason Licht, looks for. A tough, gritty player, from a small school, who was a standout performer at the Senior Bowl. Mauch has received plenty of attention on social media leading up to the draft as he's notorious for showing off his big smile, despite missing his two front teeth. 

Don't be fooled by his appearance, Mauch is an exceptional athlete. He had a tremendous combine performance, which was highlighted by a great performance in the 40-yard dash (5.09), and some elite agility scores in the shuttle (4.55) and 3-cone (9.84) drills. Mauch's relative athletic score (RAS) ranked 87th out of 1293 offensive tackles evaluated at the combine between 1987-2023. 

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This sort of athletic ability, combined with his nasty demeanour on the field, will allow him to fit right in with the Bucs' offensive line group, which now has enough depth and talent to be considered a position of strength on the roster. 

Which is something the fans in Tampa Bay have been clamouring for. 

Cody Mauch is also extremely versatile. He can play any position along the offensive line, which has become a clear objective for Jason Licht and his staff when evaluating — and ultimately selecting — offensive linemen in recent years. Mauch had 39 straight starts over his final three seasons in NDSU, starting 37 games at left tackle, and two at right tackle.

The initial assumption is that Mauch would slide into the starting left tackle position, allowing Tristan Wirfs to stay on the right side, but that's purely speculation at this point. If the Buccaneers are dead-set on Wirfs moving over to the left side, then we could see Mauch developed as a right tackle. Regardless of where he plays, one thing is for sure, the selection of an offensive tackle addresses a clear position of need for the Bucs following the release of longtime starter, Donovan Smith. 

The value of the prospect certainly matches up with a position of need for the Bucs with this selection of Cody Mauch.

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