Buccaneers Named Possible Landing Spot for ‘Polarizing’ 33-TD QB in 2025

Cameron Ward

Getty The Buccaneers could consider selecting QB Cameron Ward in next year's draft.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers could be an ideal landing spot for a “polarizing” prospect, according to Pro Football Network’s Keff Ciardello.

In his “way too early 2025 NFL Mock Draft,” Ciardello suggested the Buccaneers could select Miami Hurricanes quarterback Cameron Ward with the ninth overall pick in the 2025 NFL draft.

“If the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are selecting in the top 10 next April, the chances are that they’ll be in the market for a quarterback, and there’s just as likely a possibility that Cam Ward could develop into the top signal-caller on their board,” Ciardello wrote.

Based upon Ciardello’s projections, Ward would be the second quarterback selected after University of Georgia’s Carson Beck. Ciardello raves over Ward’s skill set, including his “impressive velocity” and “pinpoint accuracy.”

“Ward is a polarizing prospect who some may consider unworthy of first-round capital, but there’s no denying that his combination of enticing extension ability and pinpoint accuracy on tight-window throws as a result of impressive velocity generation could prove alluring for an NFL franchise,” writes Ciardello.

Why Cameron Ward Is Considered a Top QB Prospect

The 21-year-old Ward had initially declared for the draft following the conclusion of his 2023 season with the Washington State Cougars. However, he changed course and instead decided to transfer to the University of Miami just a couple weeks later.

The 6-foot-2 Ward has been considered one of the better quarterback prospects in the country. During his 2023 campaign with the Cougars, Ward threw for 25 touchdowns and ran for 8 more against just 7 interceptions for a 66.6% completion rate and 3,735 passing yards.

Ward’s 3,880 total yards ranked third in the Pac-12 conference and his 33 touchdowns ranked fourth in the conference.

Ward — who isn’t a fast or dual-threat quarterback like many top prospects these days — is actually being compared to San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy by NFL Draft Buzz. Although Purdy was the last pick in the 2022 NFL draft, he emerged as a top five MVP candidate during the 2023 season after leading the Niners to a Super Bowl appearance.

As NFL Draft Buzz wrote in their scouting report of Ward, his ball placement and his zip are among his best traits:

“Possesses an NFL arm. Gets the ball from one hash to the opposite sideline in a hurry. Has the zip to hit tight windows on short and intermediate throws. Good zip and ball placement on the quick slant. Good touch down the seam and on post-corner, flag routes to attack the defense vertically and horizontally. Sticks throws into tight windows over the middle, throwing to spot on slant or between zone defenders before the receiver is open.”

Why the Buccaneers Could Select Cam Ward in 2025

The Buccaneers signed Baker Mayfield to a three-year deal worth up to $100 million. The deal was almost a foregone conclusion after the Mayfield posted a career-best season after leading Tampa Bay to a surprising playoff appearance and playoff win.

With that being said, it’s uncertain if Mayfield can follow up that campaign with another similarly impressive season. The Buccaneers have brought back most of their key players from last season, but the Atlanta Falcons will be a bigger threat with Kirk Cousins in the fold and it’s worth mentioning that Mayfield had played for three different teams during the previous calendar year in 2022.

If Mayfield falters to the point where the Buccaneers are selecting in the top 10 of next year’s draft, don’t be surprised if they target Ward.

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