08 November 2015: Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston (3) dives thru a tackle from New York Giants strong safety Brandon Meriweather (22) to score a touchdown in the 4th quarter of the NFL game between the New York Giants and Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, FL. (Photo by Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire)
Long time MMQB author, and award winning writer Peter King profiled Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston is his latest column, and as he does often, King did things in a unique perspective, allowing Winston to tell his story honestly and openly. In fact King’s column may be the most revealing article on the 22-year old Rookie of the Year runner-up and Pro Bowl quarterback that has been written.
In it, Winston opens with his takeaways from his first season in the NFL, and while it was simple in a sense, it was an interesting synopsis of his rookie season.
“One important thing I learned: When you turn the ball over in the NFL, you don’t know when you are going to get that chance back. At Florida State, I knew that I was going to get that chance back, because we were one of the better teams in college football. We were going to get another chance, so that turnover wouldn’t kill us. Whereas in the NFL, everyone is good, so you never know when you are going to get that chance back. In the NFL, you have to take advantage of every opportunity that you get, and if you don’t, you’ll usually lose.”
While not necessarily an earth-shattering quote, it was good to see Winston say it, and even more so, come across as very believable.
Later in the article Winston expresses his thoughts after his terrible start in his first two games, blowout losses to Tennessee and Carolina.
“I wasn’t down. But I had to sit back and rethink some things. Everything just was happening so fast, to the point where the games were coming back-to-back-to-back. You didn’t have a chance to feel sorry for yourself, you just had to move on to the next game. After the [four-interception] Carolina game I thought, I’ve got to think about what am I doing. Try to change my routine. Four interceptions, that’s not me. I just had to sit back and relax. Because after that game I didn’t want to continue to do bad. I had seen how much potential our team had. We were trying to create an identity as an offense, and I felt like I was hurting the team by turning the ball over. My teammates didn’t really talk to me about it. I just took initiative to do it myself. On Monday usually you can come in at any time. I would be in on Monday at 6:30, get a lift in at 7, and then after that I would go up and meet with coach Bajakian and watch the film with him and get a jump-start on the next team.
“After the Carolina game, I said, ‘I’ve just gotta chill.’ I loved coming to work every day, and I loved being a leader. And I felt like there was no way to lead this team when I am the main cause for our failure, and that’s the way I viewed it—that I was the main cause for our failure early in the season. So I felt like I had to make a change in me.”
The last sentence of the above quote was also very revealing, and if you are the Bucs organization or even just a fan, you have to to smile knowing that this 22-year old “kid” with all the pressure in the world, gets it.
The entire feature should make Bucs fans sit back and feel better about the future of a franchise that hasn’t won a postseason game since the Super Bowl, and has only one winning season since 2008. For those who questioned if Winston was the right pick – and those were fair questions – articles like this should calm even the most cynical critics of the former FSU star.
– To read King’s full story, click here.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org
We are so lucky to have him. The long search for a Franchise QB is finally over. Our fortunes are going to be really great in the NFL future. I remember being told that he was not fast enough for the NFL. How many running TD’s did he get last year ?
Great article and a good read. He gets it and we are lucky to have him. I especially liked that he admitted his stance and footwork flaws and those areas of correction. And getting on even better shape can’t hurt either.
This is the first season of his life he gets to focus on just football. Let that sink in fellow Bucs fans. The future is bright.
Read the story earlier today and was really impressed about how Winston spoke about his role as a leader and assuming that mantle.
Was also impressed with the way he spole about Koetter and his QB coach..
The young man seems to be really coming along.
Ah Ha! Three Buc fans in agreement. It’s a good day in the neighborhood. Make that four!
He continues to impress me. So glad Bucs picked him!
Make that five.
It will be unanimous when Pink is on board.
Sometimes I think Bucs fans are “gun shy”. They seem so used to negatives they can’t trust that things really are improving. So happy to have some harmony.
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