Buccaneers Open To Jameis Winston Return

Buccaneers QB Jameis Winston started three games for Tampa Bay after his return from suspension, and while he looked pretty good in beating up on the Falcons’ depleted secondary in Week 6, his Week 7 and 8 performances were awful. After throwing four interceptions in the team’s loss to the Bengals last week, Winston was benched in favor of veteran backup Ryan Fitzpatrick as the Bucs try to cling to their playoff hopes.

Needless to say, the benching raised a lot of questions about Winston’s future with the club, questions that were already swirling in the wake of his off-field problems and his general inability to prove himself as a top-tier quarterback, despite flashes of the skills that made him the No. 1 overall pick of the 2015 draft. But Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports says Winston has reacted well to his benching, and the team is open to giving him another shot this season.

Winston is under club control through the 2019 campaign via the fifth-year option, but since the option is guaranteed for injury only and comes at a hefty $20.9MM price tag, it is fair to wonder whether Tampa Bay would put him back under center this season and risk putting itself on the hook for that money. But Adam Schefter of ESPN.com reports that the Bucs are adamant that Winston’s contract status will not impact what it feels is best for the club (and since head coach Dirk Koetter is very much on the hot seat, he will certainly not concern himself too much with the team’s future financial picture at this point).

Fitzpatrick, though he has played some excellent football this year, is a journeyman for a reason, so Winston could theoretically be reinserted into the lineup at anytime. Plus, La Canfora writes that the team made a point to reach out to Winston this week to explain that they still believe he can be a quality starting quarterback in this league.

At this point, however, all options, including an offseason trade — a possibility that La Canfora floated — are on the table.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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9 comments on “Buccaneers Open To Jameis Winston Return

  1. duke1776

    This is why the Buccaneers will become the new Browns of the NFL.
    Winston is a bust. You move on from busts. Not just keep hoping they become better.
    His NFL scouting report is literally the same scouting report he had in college.

    • crosseyedlemon

      What is accomplished by moving on from a bust when there is no replacement in the pipeline?

      • duke1776

        Fitzpatrick can be the starter next year and draft a QB to learn behide him.
        I mean unless you want to watch Winston throw 4 INTs and fumble all the time. Every game next year also.
        Glad to see you want the Buccaneers to be a 2 and 14 team again and again.

  2. bradthebluefish

    Wonder if Bill Belichick could turn around Winston’s career. Only probably is the money that Winston will likely command even to be a backup.

    • crosseyedlemon

      Uh, if he can’t handle the heat in Florida how in the world will he ever survive the intense media pressure in New York?

      • diller79

        I don’t think that Jamies issue is with the media at all. And the heat in Florida is way worse then in New York due to the fact that New York is located much more north of the equator so it has a much colder climate so that shouldn’t be an issue!!!!!!!

  3. Phattey

    Jameis is a good quarterback can’t blame him for the o line ‘s problems , it’s difficult to expect much from a quarterback if you don’t have a running game . They keep using their picks on bum players and haven’t really improved the team much from where lovie smith left it

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