The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were forced to start their back up QB, Ryan Fitzpatrick, at the start of last season due to the 3 game suspension of their franchise QB, Jameis Winston. A suspension which was the result of a NFL investigation into a Uber incident in the off-season after Winston’s second season.
Starting a team’s backup QB is never an ideal situation, but the Bucs found themselves 2-1 during Winston’s suspension, and then Head Coach Dirk Koetter found himself having to choose between the Bucs franchise QB or Fitzmagic. From that point on there would be a QB carousel until Koetter finally decided, after a drawn out process, to start Winston indefinitely.
On Tuesday during ESPN’s Adam Schefter’s podcast he had now Tampa Bay Head Coach Bruce Arians on for an interview. He asked him what plagued the Buccaneers last season, and Arians responded saying,
“Russian roulette wheel at quarterback… And some other things. Everybody’s got injuries, but you know things got away from them… I got all the respect in the world for Dirk Koetter.”
Adam Schefter asked earlier in his interview,
“How good of a QB can [Winston] be under your guidance and direction?”
Arians responded, “Well I think he’s got all the skill. He’s very bright, and he’s an excellent worker. I mean he’s there at 5 ‘o’ clock every morning. So when you have all those things, [and] a great quarterback coach in Clyde Christensen. Offensive Coordinator in Byron Leftwich… Who he can lean on. A guy that’s played the position in this offense. So there shouldn’t be any questions that can’t be answered… Fundamentally, he will be in his best he’s ever been, I think, with Clyde. So yeah, it’s just making the right decisions at the right time to help us win.”
It is obvious that Arians was not a fan of the indecisiveness from the last regime. Especially at the quarterback position. Without a doubt you need consistency at QB, especially for a young franchise quarterback who trying to improve his game. Now Winston has that opportunity, with what would seem to be the best coaching staff he has been surrounded by since he was drafted.
For the Bucs sake, let’s hope that this is a sign that the age of inconsistency in Tampa Bay is coming to a close.
You can view the full podcast from Adam Schefter HERE.