Jameis Winston has taken to his new offense with purpose.
With no quarterback competition around him, Winston has been able to just focus on Bruce Arians’ scheme and continue to be a leader for the Bucs. There’s excitement for Winston to learn a new offense, as it cuts out the montonity of the everyday routine.
“It’s fun,” Winston said back at mini-camp. “The great thing about learning a new offense is you go back to those little kid days because we get to learn football again. Sometimes when you install the offense over and over again, you can get complacent, but now you got to get back on top like a little kid. You’re out there having fun again, learning the new system even though some plays are similar. It’s just good energy, a nice grind, and like I said, it’s fun.”
Winston has been studying so much so that his coaches have had to get him out of the building. Another staple of Bruce Arians outside of taking shots down field and funny quotes are his emphasis on the balance of work and family time. That’s rubbed off on his assistant coaches as well.
Offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich and quarterback coach Clyde Christensen both spoke to the media on Thursday and reiterated firsthand how much they’ve seen Winston in the building.
“Well, he’s over here really from five until five every day,” Leftwich said. “Right now this kid’s over here so much sometimes, sometimes I got to send him home, like ‘you got to get out of here.’ That’s how much work he’s putting in. I appreciate that as a coach but there’s a balance to it. I want him thinking football, but the key right now is when he get out the building, I believe in that. I believe in enjoying your family, spending time, do things, because once it gets started it’s non-stop every day.”
Quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen considers himself an early bird, and yet even Winston has beat him to the building in the morning.
“I know this, it’s early and it’s late.” Christensen said on Winston’s time spent in the facility. “When I pull in here his truck is always in its parking spot.”
He loves the hard work that Winston is putting in each day, but also believes that there’s a method to it all, where not wearing yourself out too early is important.
“I think that’s one of the things we’re addressing,” Christensen said. It’s just making sure that we’re working efficiently. It’s a long season, it’s a lot of stress, you better get your tail out of this building. There’s been times we worked with a couple of workaholic quarterbacks and we just had to have some dead time where they weren’t allowed to, – no football – just no football times. We’ll probably have to do the same with Jameis, there’s just a point where you have to get away from this thing. It’s a pressure packed position that fatigues you and come week 20 of the season or week 21 for the playoffs, one of the keys is being fresh, being fresh mentally and physically. I think that will be an issue with him.”
Christensen mentioned that they’ve had conversations with Winston regarding the effectiveness of quality over quantity.
“We talked a lot about it with him,” Christensen said. “Working hard isn’t always the answer, more isn’t always better. More isn’t always better throwing a football, playing quarterback, being in this building, more isn’t always better. We talked a lot about that and we’ll address it and certainly manage that schedule. With him, it will be having to rein him in a little bit, saying enough’s enough and ban him from the building.”