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Tampa Bay Buccaneers pick S Antoine Winfield Jr.

The Big Ten's best defensive back is flying south.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers selected Minnesota safety Antoine Winfield Jr. with the 45th pick in the 2020 NFL Draft on Friday.

A unanimous first-team All-American and the Big Ten's Defensive Back of the Year, Winfield's only knock on him was his size. At 5-foot-10, he's smaller than your average safety, but he plays bigger than his listed height and weight.

Winfield flies all over the field and directly impacts the game, and it's clear in his play that he got it from his father, three-time Pro Bowler and second-team All-Pro Antoine Winfield. The elder Winfield intercepted his son's new teammate, Tom Brady, on Nov. 11, 2011, when he was in just his third professional season and Brady was in his first season as New England's starter.

If Junior is anything like his dad -- and he's proven to be so far -- this will be an excellent pick.

In the third round, Tampa Bay bolstered its backfield with the addition of Vanderbilt running back Ke'Shawn Vaughn at No. 76. Vaughn should back up starting RB Ronald Jones with the Buccaneers.

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