Bucs select WR Mike Evans 7th overall in NFL draft

Posted at 9:21 PM, May 08, 2014
and last updated 2014-05-08 21:21:00-04

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have selected Texas A&M receiver Mike Evans with the seventh overall pick in the NFL draft.

Improving an offense that ranked last in passing and total offense in 2013 has been a major priority this offseason. New coach Lovie Smith and general manager Jason Licht decided Thursday night that adding the second-highest rated receiver in the draft was more important than making Evans' college teammate, Johnny Manziel, the team's quarterback of the future.

The 6-foot-5, 231-pound Evans averaged just over 20 yards per reception last season, finishing with 69 catches for 1,394 yards and 12 touchdowns. The Bucs will play him on the side opposite of Vincent Jackson, a five-time 1,000-yard receiver, including the past two seasons in Tampa Bay.