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Bucs’ G.M. Jason Licht certain his team can get help at No. 19

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If the Tampa Bay Bucs have taken controversial running back Joe Mixon off of their draft board, general manager Jason Licht isn’t saying.

While a few teams have already stated they weren’t interested in Mixon, the running back from Oklahoma who committed assault on a woman three years ago, Licht prefers not to say.

The Bucs did have Mixon in for a visit, which Licht says was “valuable.”

Licht, addressing the media Monday in his pre-draft press conference, said he was sure the team would be able to get a player with their 19th selection.

“You can get a good player at 50,” Licht said. “You can get a good player throughout the draft. A lot of times when you’re picking high, if you go back and study it, there are a lot of high-ceiling but also low-floor players up there. A little boom or bust. That’s the way throughout the draft. A lot of times when you’re when picking later in the first round, you’re getting a safe player who may not have the flash, but ends up being a very solid player.

“It’s a little trickier picking at 19 with all the scenarios that happen in front of you. We can’t pinpoint who is going to be there yet. But we’re excited where we’re picking.”

In other Bucs news:

The team exercised its fifth-year option on wide receiver Mike Evans. Licht said he would like to see Evans be “a Buc for life.

Also, the team welcomed the return of running back Doug Martin, who will be suspended for the season’s first three games because of PEDs. Licht would not say when the team would make a final decision on Martin’s future.

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Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit garysheltonsports@gmail.com.

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