For those on either side of the Jameis Winston and Marcus Mariota debate that wanted to use intelligence to help their cause, you will have to look elsewhere, as both players performed well on the Wonderlic test given at the NFL Combine.
The former Duck took Winston in the head-to-head matchup, reportedly scored a 33 with Winston checking in with a respectable 27.
According to Wikipedia, “The Wonderlic Cognitive Ability Test (formerly known as the Wonderlic Personnel Test) is a popular group intelligence test used to assess the aptitude of prospective employees for learning and problem-solving in a range of occupations. . It consists of 50 multiple choice questions to be answered in 12 minutes.”
The average score for NFL quarterback is a 24, and surprisingly offensive linemen have historically had the highest average score with a 27. One person in NFL history scored a perfect 50, that being former Bengals punter Pat McInally, a Harvard grad.
Some notable NFL players scores include Drew Brees and Peyton Manning reportedly scoring 28 on their tests, while Tony Romo came in with a 37 and Aaron Rodgers scoring a 37.
To see an example of the Wonderlic and see how you score, click here. And no, I am not revealing my score, but let’s just say I am no offensive lineman.
ESPN wrote a Jameis Winston feature story without condemning him or slanting it to draw the ire of haters? I kid. ESPN didn’t jump on a table on campus and scream a vulgar internet meme, or walk out of a Tallahassee Publix with unpaid for crab legs, among other indiscretions.
But this article will be pleasing to the Winston fans and maybe even a little eye-opening to the vocal anti-Jameis crowd. It begins in San Diego where Winston is working out with QB coach George Whitfield, then tours Winston’s hometown of Bessemer, Ala. and sheds a little light on the personal side of Winston that many may not be aware of.
Winston fans will say I told you so, while those who are disgusted with the former FSU QB will most likely say it is a rehearsed contrived article of saying all of the right things when the microphone is on. Most likely it falls somewhere in the middle, but regardless, it is the most extensive inside look at Winston that has been written – or allowed – to be done by the media.
To check out the lengthy feature by author Kurt Streeter, click here.
For those hoping the Buccaneers would officially announce the addition of the some pass rushing help on Monday afternoon, they will have to wait.
Tampa Bay signed RFA George Johnson to a three-year, $9 million deal last week in hopes that the salary cap strapped Lions would be unable to match it. On Monday afternoon Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press tweeted that the Lions had contested the structure of the contract and that an NFL arbitrator would settle the matter. The time frame is 10 days and then two additional days for the Lions to match the offer according to reports.
Johnson, who signed with Tampa Bay as an undrafted free agent in 2010 out of Rutgers, and remained with the Bucs through the 2012 preseason before he was released. Johnson notched a team-high three sacks in the 2011 preseason, but was placed on injured reserve later that year with a knee injury.
After an uneventful two-year stint in Minnesota, Johnson signed with Detroit last year and notched 29 tackles and the first six sacks of his career. The Lions might not match Johnson’s offer because they are bringing back five defensive ends from last year’s team – Ezekiel Ansah, Jason Jones, Devin Taylor, Darryl Tapp and Larry Webster, last year’s draft pick. Detroit also signed former CFL standout Phillip Hunt.
With defensive end being one of the weaker positions in terms of talent and production, the 6-foot-4, 265-pound Johnson would be a welcome addition, especially with the recent departure of Michael Johnson, a free agent bust from a year ago. The 27-year old Johnson still has plenty of upside that defensive line coach Joe Cullen and new assistant defensive line coach Paul Spicer can develop.
Signing Johnson would also take some of the pressure off Tampa Bay in terms of having to select a defensive end early in the draft.
Well that escalated quickly.
Earlier on Monday friend of PewterReport.com @NFLosophy tweeted some information that sent Twitter into an uproar (at least from Bucs fans) stating the Bucs would take Oregon QB Marcus Mariota over former FSU star Jameis Winston if they couldn’t find a suitable trade down partner.
The tweet and the discussion that ensured prompted Denver radio host and nationally known NFL pundit Benjamin Albright (@NFLAlbright) to add his two cents.
Finally this prompted Pete Prisco (@PriscoCBS) of CBSsports.com to respond via Twitter as well.
What does it all mean? Maybe nothing, but it certainly caught the attention of fans in the Tampa Bay area and proved the power of social media and how quickly this can begin trending and catch the attention of some of the national writers. Tis the season for teams to release information to different outlets to create smokescreens and vapor trails to throw off other NFL teams (as well as the media at times).
PewterReport.com still firmly believes Winston will be the pick, but also has no doubt there is still some internal dialogue going on inside the walls of One Buc Place, just as there should be. With the Buccaneers having the first pick in the NFL draft for the first time since 1987, Tampa Bay needs to make the most of this and get it right. Whichever QB the team decides on.
Get your popcorn ready Bucs fans, the draft is just 17 days away and in the next two and a half weeks expect many more social media and internet debates.
Just when you thought the all of the Jameis Winston stories had been written, another one came from an unlikely source.
Speaking at Villanova’s Moorad Sports Law symposium on Friday, Winston’s attorney, David Cornwell sent waves through the sports world.
“He’s ready to be an NFL player on the field. But he’s not ready to be an NFL player off the field,” Cornwell said. “We have to assist him in growing and developing as a man. And it’s not going to be easy…I don’t think (Winston) is unique. I don’t think anyone is ready. No one is ready for this world when they come into it.”
ESPN’s NFL front office insider and former NFL executive Louis Riddick thought the comments and some of the reaction was a little overblown.
“Is he (Cornwell) really saying anything you haven’t said internally yourself?,” Riddick said on SportsCenter. “Yeah it doesn’t help as far as like calming your fears at this point in your evaluation process? But look these are questions teams have probably asked themselves already. Is he ready? Does he have a long way to go? Are we going to be able to help him? Are we going to be able to trust him?
“You have been hearing these questions about Jameis for two years now. So it’s not really that much of a shock so to speak. Its just unsettling hearing it come from someone who you would think would only have his best interests in mind. Although what David I think is true for a lot of young players. They all need guidance. It is just with Jameis things are a little different because of the nature of the things he has been surrounded by.”
Ultimately the decision on drafting Winston will be made by the Bucs front office and not the media or even Winston’s attorney. But over the next 20 days expect any report with the name Winston in it to draw headlines.
NFL analyst Mike Mayock hasn’t shied away from his concerns about the character of former FSU quarterback Jameis Winston, but it appears now that he also has some on the field concerns.
In his latest draft rankings, Mayock has reigning Heisman winner Marcus Mariota listed as the No. 1 QB prospect, ranked ahead of Winston.
During FSU’s pro day last month, Mayock had this to say regarding Winston.
“I’m not there yet,” Mayock said following Winston’s workout. “Tampa Bay may be. I keep going back to the point that he throws too many interceptions, and ball security is the most important thing to me for a quarterback. Off the field, do you trust him or not? There’s still some homework to do on that.
“If Marcus Mariota is in the same ballpark, if you’re an NFL franchise, then you take Marcus Mariota because you don’t have any issues off the field,” Mayock added. “If there’s a bigger disparity, then it’s a different answer.”
In other QB news, Jason Cole of Bleacher Report said on Wednesday he thinks the Bucs also still have concerns about Winston’s character and may end up taking Mariota.
22 days and counting Bucs fans.
Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher recently joined Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk recently to talk about Jameis Winston and a number of other topics including potentially jumping to the NFL one day. Fisher told Florio talked about Winston’s character, his ability to process information and being pro ready.
To listen to the full interview click here, then select the “Big-Name Guests” option.
The Buccaneers added another tight end and center to the roster on Thursday, signing Emmanuel Ogbuehi of Georgia State and former SMU and Chiefs center Ben Gottschalk. Ogbuehi and Gottschalk participated in the first ever veteran’s combine last month.
According to Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times, Ogbuehi (6-2, 230)worked out as a fullback as well as tight end on Wednesday. The former Georgia State product has yet to play in an NFL game and spent the last two seasons with Ravens, Browns and Miami Dolphins. Ogbuehi also visited the Minnesota Vikings prior to signing with Tampa Bay according to reports.
Currently the Bucs appear set at the tight end position with last year’s second round draft pick Austin Seferian-Jenkins, veteran Brandon Myers and Luke Stocker who the team re-signed in March on the eve of free agency. The team’s roster also lists Cameron Brate, Taylor Sloat and Evan Rodriguez as tight ends. Fullback Javorski Lane was also re-signed this offseason and Ogbuehi could be competing with Lane for a roster spot at that position.
Gottschalk will compete for a roster spot behind starter Evan Dietrich-Smith along with Josh Allen and former USF Bull Jeremiah Warren.
The indoor athletic facility at Florida State’s pro day was packed with various NFL front offices, coaching staffs and media members and even some of Jameis Winston’s former coaches, including his former head coach Jimbo Fisher.
The fast talking West Virginia native didn’t have to be prompted very hard to get him talking and praising his former gridiron leader.
“When you meet him you will understand he is a genuine, honest, great person, one of the best – he is one of the best players I coached in regards to being a great teammate, being a great person and affecting the guys on the team in a positive way all the time, he is just a great guy.”
Fisher was asked about how Winston compared to some of the previous quarterbacks he has coached, but the head ball coach didn’t want to make any comparisons with the likes of E.J. Manuel or Christian Ponder, instead sticking to his strong opinion of Winston.
“Jameis has the whole – he is the whole package – he has all of the resources, mentally, physically but also dynamically in leadership and understanding in who he is and how to get guys to play around him. He does as good of a job as I have seen.”
Fisher and Winston had a well documented sideline blowup during the second half of the Rose Bowl game against Oregon, but anyone who watched FSU football for any length of time knows that was par for the course between the two. PewterReport.com asked Fisher if that is something that bothered him about Winston.
“Heck no, I love it. I’d coach 100 of them. It was never – we would get into it at practice like that. It was just two great competitive guys and sometimes you raise your voice. I’d take a 1000 of them over the over the guys… I’d rather say ‘whoa’ than ‘giddy up.’”
Florida Sate head coach Jimbo Fisher was a guest on WDAE-620 AM with morning hosts Tom Jones and Rick Stroud on Friday and went off on some of the reports about Jameis Winston, calling them character assassination and half truths.
Fisher also talked with Jones and Stroud about having Winston as his starting quarterback the past two seasons and raved about his leadership qualities and why he thinks he will be a successful NFL quarterback.
Of course, what else would you expect from a coach, but Fisher who has been vocal in his support for Winston over the last 15 months, certainly sounded passionate and sincere.
But make up your own mind, and listen to the full interview below.