About the author

Mark Cook

Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]

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14 Comments

  1. 1

    martinii

    My greatest concern this year is Jameis Winston. When was the last time we had a Starting QB play 3 seasons with relative consistency. While I am very impressed with the work we’ve done in free agency and the draft additions my binoculars are going to be focused on #3. He is the catalyst that can pull all this potential into a playoff and possibly beyond team. If he can remain healthy and continue to mature there is no stopping this train. Go Bic’s……..

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    1. 1.1

      bucsmaniac

      Martinii Winston should be at the bottom of the concern list…when was the last time we had a QB be as productive two years in a row…answer the last two seasons…don’t see that train stopping for many years!!

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    2. 1.2

      Pick6

      I think the scheme is a big part of why folks are so worried about winston, and it sounds like changes are afoot. Last year this was an offense with no running game threat and with only one potential mismatch on the field. With little threat from the run game, Winston either needed to hold the ball while Evans got slightly open amid the inevitable double\triple coverage, or he needed to find brate\humphries in the swarm of bodies parked near the line of scrimmage. As a result, Winston and the line caught flack for the hits he took, JW forced more passes than you’d like, and he was clearly pressing to make something happen at times.

      i think the diversified attack gives winston a chance to look more decisive by finding his mismatches quickly and by creating hesitation in the defense. Winston had no opportunity to look like a surgeon his first 2 years, because if teams didn’t screw up covering mike evans he just had to wait and hope someone else could find some daylight. Now he can know presnap which 2 guys the defense is committing itself 2 and throw to the 3rd, 4th, 5th option with confidence that a play can be made

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  2. 2

    Iowabucfan

    JW3 is the least of my concerns. The reason is that he is doing everything he can to take us to the mountain top and beyond. But, the Bucs are going as far as he takes us.

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  3. 3

    Mark Cook

    Yeah I didn’t mean for it to come across as a major concern for me either. I was just pointing out his play will affect the team more than any other position in my opinion. If he plays at an 11-5 level, the team will be 11-5. If he plays at a 6-10 level, so will the results be.

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  4. 4

    cvillebucfan

    Going to come down to the play of the OL. If they can protect Winston, he’ll delivery bigly!

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  5. 5

    drdneast

    Actually, of all the positions, I think the Bucs are deeper now at both DL and WR with the offseason additions they made.
    Every team has a lack of depth at one position or another, even the Patriots. The difference is when one of their key players drop out, there always seem to be another waiting in the wings as is the case with Gronkowski and Bennett.
    I would think our DB position is probably the thinnest, but word is that Ryan Smith did a fantastic job covering Mike Evans as a scout team player last year so who knows. Hope we don’t have to find out.
    BTW, a lot of people talk about Grimes’ age, but the Redskins had a player named Darrell Green who played at a high level and started up into his 40s. 19 seasons to be exact. In other words, he was covering WR’s when a lot of his team mates were starting pre school. Go figure.

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    1. 5.1

      WiltheBrewer

      I agree w/ Drd in terms of depth at DL and WRs- It would be more of an impact to lose Alexander or David at LB based on depth/experience

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  6. 6

    Naplesfan

    Injury concerns? Only that we have too many, as we did last season wherein we led the league in number of players on IR. Every team suffers injuries to key players every season. Quarterback is the most important player on the roster, but with Fitz, a proven 10 game a season winner as a starter backing up Jameis, we can survive JW going down.

    But if we lose more than a couple key starters for more than a couple games, it gets tougher to put together a playoff/winning season.

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  7. 7

    fredster

    O line is deeper this year but one or two keep injuries and things could get ugly. Agree losing Evans would be devastating. Can’t say losing Jackson would be he hasn’t even played yet.

    Losing Ayers was huge and d like couldn’t pressure anyone last year but we are deeper there too. Still McCoy or Ayers or even young Spence would be huge impact.

    I’m not saying anything negative about Winston here just couple opportunities that are obvious so blast me if you want here but Winston needs to improve in his 3rd year and I think he will. I love the kids attitude. Love his mobility and way he gets out of trouble. I love his toughness and that he hasn’t missed a game yet (Mariota) lol. I love he’s a leader on rthe team already and the others respect and follow him.

    Ok The passing yards are great and tell one story but he has got to do two things IN my humble opinion to get us to next level of playoffs or deeper.

    First and foremost his mechanics at time get lazy and his accuracy can be very bad. At times I cringe and have flashbacks of Freeman sailing balls over guy’s heads. Lol. Not comparing the two other than that so just calm down before you freak out. Lol. You can lecture me tell me I’m crazy whatever. It’s a fact though I’ve watched every game multiple times and accuracy is inconsistent and needs improvement. Yes having better weapons and better O line, and better run game were all needed for the young man. He needs to improve his accuracy especially on deep balls. What good is Jackson streaking past defenders on go route if he can’t hit him? Enough said. I feel like anytime you say Winston needs to improve something people freak out like he’s perfect. Guess so many years of having no franchise QB and we finally have ours. Yes he is a franchise QB and damn good one imo.

    Second thing is pretty much every game he has played he comes out and he is too hyped up. His heart rate is probably off the charts. He has to calm down in the first few series. Teams that score first win more than teams that don’t. So many first possessions he struggled. I also blame Koetter for this. He should find ways to get him into the game and calm him down with easy high percentage throws.

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  8. 8

    fredster

    Winston was my biggest concern last year as far as injury . QB is always the biggest concern as far as injury but I do think Fitz can come in and win few games. I don’t think he could play at high level a whole season though if it’s a bad injury to Winston. Fitz is too old and he’s quite inconsistent at times

    Getting him was great move though I can’t imagine a better option for the money if we need him for game or two.

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  9. 9

    stlbucsfan

    Both lines will determine how far the team goes. Our ability to stop the run sets us up for 3rd and long which gives us the ability to mix n match fresh pass rushers to harrass QBs. Running the ball gives us the ability to play action and then good luck stopping all of our weapons.

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  10. 10

    billbyrne

    Much of the hype from the media and the fans has been directed to the offense so far this year and understandably so Mark. You have addressed many of the questions in a professional outline……nice job by the way! Having said that, I believe the projected success for 2017 is with a dominating defense not a high scoring offense. The running game has not been addressed by the Bucs and I think the fans are expecting too much from Jameis Winston. This is, after all, only his third year and getting comfortable with new players on offense takes time. The defense will carry us through the NFC South with Ryan, Breese and Newton to control…not the offense. Just my viewpoint.

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  11. 11

    Mark Cook

    No question, the Bus need the 2016 post bye week defense to show up week 1 this year.

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