The Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced the signing of third-round pick Alex Cappa on Saturday.
Cappa, an offensive lineman, is the fifth of the Buccaneers’ eight draft picks to sign. Defensive tackle Vita Vea (first round), running back Ronald Jones (second) and cornerback Carlton Davis (second) remain unsigned.
Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter praised the versatility Cappa — for whom the team traded a sixth-round pick to move up eight spots — brings coming from a smaller school in Humboldt State. Tampa Bay intends to primarily utilize Cappa as a guard.
“That’s one of the things we liked about him,” Koetter told reporters. “A lot of these smaller school guys play left tackle for their school, but they’re projected somewhere else. We really feel like he’s a guy that could play across the line. In his college days, he did practice some as a center too and as you know, on game day when we’ve got seven up, they have to be able to play more than one position.”
For his part, Cappa is embracing the idea of playing across the line.
“You’ve just got to come in and learn everything you can so that way you can apply it everywhere,” Kappa said. “You’ve got to be versatile as an offensive lineman. You only carry seven or eight guys; that’s just the way it is.”
The Bucs aren’t strangers to relying on small-school linemen, having taken Ali Marpet out of Hobart in the second round in 2015 before starting him immediately as a rookie. After playing center in 2017, Marpet will move back to right guard this season as free-agent signee Ryan Jensen takes over at the pivot. That would leave Cappa competing with Evan Smith for time at left guard, with a role as the primary interior backup as a fallback.
—Field Level Media