With training camp set to kickoff on Thursday morning at 8:45 a.m., veteran’s reported to One Buc on Wednesday. By noon, the Bucs public relations department made three players available at the podium in the studio to talk about the upcoming season. Winston wasn’t one of those players, but that didn’t keep the topic of the quarterback’s three-game suspension from being a major point of discussion.

Not surprisingly, there was unwavering support for Winston from guard Ali Marpet, wide receiver Mike Evans and linebacker Lavonte David.

“We’ve talked and his mindset is, how can he be the best teammate moving forward, and I think he’s doing that,” Marpet said. “We all support him. We’re one team, obviously we’ve been together for a little while now. He’s taking the right approach since the suspension.”

Bucs Ali Marpet – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Marpet said he was actually caught off guard when the suspension came down.

“It’s tough. I just didn’t know much about it, I guess,” Marpet said. “So when I found out that there was a three game suspension, obviously there was something I didn’t know. So yeah, I was surprised.”

Evans seemed even less bothered by the fact the team will face the Saints, Eagles and Steelers without their top quarterback.

“Just like last year when we had Fitz in, it’s the same thing,” Evans said. “We do look at the schedule and see the strength of it, but this is the NFL. This is what we signed up for and this is what we’ve got to do. We’ve got to battle. We’ve got a tough three weeks and I’m looking forward to it. I love the competition. Monday night against Pittsburgh, at New Orleans, the Super Bowl champs… you can’t ask for anything better than that.”

Evans didn’t want to get too deep into the specifics of the Winston situation.

“I don’t know the whole situation and nobody does except the people that were there, so I don’t want to speak to much on that, but I’m just happy that he’s taking it well and I’m looking forward to having him back early in the season.”

David, like Evans, didn’t come across as overly worried but said he still believes in Winston moving forward.

“We just know it was a silly mistake back in the day. Just a silly mistake. He knows it, we all know it but we’ve got his back, like I said,” David said. “He knows what he’s done and he’s going to learn from it because from when it happened to now he’s matured a lot. You guys know Jameis. Jameis is a guy who’s all about his business. Come to work, do what’s right, he’s going to have your back and we’re going to try and do our best to have his back. That’s why we just keep our spirits up and hold him down until he’s back.”

Lavonte later clarified his declaration of it being a “silly mistake” instead calling it a “bad decision.”

Bucs QBs Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

Bucs QBs Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

“Yeah, I think so. It was just a bad judgement call by him because I know him personally from what I’ve seen, from what we talk about, things like that,” David said. “He’s just a guy who’s just trying to become the best man he can be. He’s engaged to his fiancé, he just had a newborn son, so he’s just trying to be the best role model for his son. I know it happened a long time ago and it was just a bad decision made by him but I’m positive, I’m 100% sure that he’s learned from it in a major way.”

Marpet summed up what we expect most, if not all of his teammates would say.

“We support him fully,” Marpet said. “Again, as corny as it is, we are one family. I mean, when one of us is down we have each other’s back. We definitely have his back and when he can play he has our back.”

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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, the beach and family time.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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Buc-n-Philly Fan
Buc-n-Philly Fan
3 years ago

Bring on the Haters and their negative comments….

It is time to move forward and let the season play out. I have faith that this Team, including Winston will step up and perform.

Go Bucs!

fredster
fredster
3 years ago

I hope for our teams sake Winston has grown up and his play improves a lot this year. Go Bucs! Time to move on unless he does something stupid again at which point I’d be done and sure the Glazers would too.

Devasher
Devasher
3 years ago

I expect his teammates to have his back as they should. While Fitzpatrick is nowhere near the class of QB Winston is the team performed better with him under center last year than without. The Bucs not only went 2-1, including a road win against the Dolphins they rallied back in the Arizona game from a deep hole after Winston went down. All of this said, the excuse making that this happened years ago and Winston has matured is far from proven. Winston was lying about the uber event and attempting to have his friends cover for him up until… Read more »

drdneast
drdneast
3 years ago

I’m pretty much tired of hearing about this. It’s really old news that has been rehashed a dozen times. Time to move on.

MrThrityTwo
MrThrityTwo
3 years ago

L David should have stood by his first comment. And when pushed said ‘no comment’.

It wasnt a silly mistake actually

It was a horribly silly over reaction by Heir Roger Goodell and the NFL. With no evidence. This was a criminal action no police report nothing

Jameis and the Bucs got railroaded
Thats the silly mistake

seat26
seat26
3 years ago

This will be a good Season.
The Team made significant upgrades in the offseason. I think our Rookie class is superb. We should have a fantastic Pass rush this year, and Winston has a stronger OL to work behind. All the Wintson noise will be forgotten when we are in the hunt for the Division championship.