Cover 3 is a weekly feature column written by PewterReport.com’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat writer Trevor Sikkema published every Tuesday. The column, as its name suggests, comes in three phases: a statistical observation, an in-depth film breakdown, and a “this or that” segment where the writer asks the reader to chose between two options.

Sikkema’s Stat of the Week

Drew Brees, Peyton Manning, Brett Favre, Matthew Stafford; they all threw interceptions. And you know what else? They eventually won football games.

You know who can’t do that in Tampa Bay? Jameis Winston.

Brees had a worse turnover ratio than Jameis Winston did when Brees was Winston’s age. And then, in his third year in the league, Brees evolved and never looked back.

Manning had a worse turnover ratio than Winston did when Manning was Winston’s age. And then, in his third year in the league, Manning evolved and never looked back.

Favre had a worse turnover ratio than Winston did when Favre was Winston’s age. And then, in his third year in the league, Favre evolved and never looked back.

Stafford had a worse turnover ratio than Winston did when Stafford was Winston’s age. And then, in his third year in the league, Stafford evolved and never looked back.

Bucs QB Jameis Winston - Photo by: Getty Images
Bucs QB Jameis Winston – Photo by: Getty Images

This isn’t about maturity or age or time or giving up on a guy too soon. It’s about a quarterback who’s always been this way, and that people have wanted so badly for him to be more that they’re living in a world that doesn’t exist.

It’s Year Four for Winston. He isn’t Brees or Manning or Favre or Stafford. They all figured it out by now.

With so much evidence against him, I don’t think he ever will figure it out – not in Tampa Bay, at least.

I do wonder how different things would be if the events of Winston’s on-field football life did not pan out the way they did, in the exact order they did.

I remember where I was when I first saw Winston. I was in my old apartment at the University of Florida the night Winston threw for 356 yards and four touchdowns against Pittsburgh to open up the 2013 college football season, completing over 90 percent of his passes. I remember thinking, “Wow, this kid is going to be something special.” And that season he was. Winston threw for over 4,000 yards, 40 touchdowns and just 10 interceptions on the way to becoming the Heisman Trophy winner and the catalyst for the Noles’ national championship.

Since then, Winston has never been close to being that kind of player, in college or the NFL. Winston threw just 25 touchdowns and 18 interceptions the following season, his last at Florida State. Winston threw 22 TDs and 15 INTs as a rookie in 2015, followed by a career-high 28 TDs in 18 INTs the next year. In 13 games last season, Winston threw 19 TDs and 11 INTs, and has six scoring strikes this year and a league-high 10 picks in just three and a half games. As Scott Reynolds pointed out in his SR’s Fab 5, Winston is a turnover machine.

To this point, in his three full seasons with the Buccaneers, he’s never thrown for a season average TD-INT ratio of over 1.7 (just once). Of Brees, Manning, Favre and Stafford, they rarely, if at all, have posted TD-INT ratios below 2.0 at all after their first two years as starters. Winston should be much better than he is, at this point, and he’s just not.

Nothing compared to the first season we saw from Winston at Florida State, and I wonder how much that first impression truly skewed the belief in him that would follow.

First impressions are hard to break. They’re foundational. Winston’s was iconic – heroic, even. The kind that makes you think he could save a city. That’s what the Buccaneers thought, at least. And now, not only is he not on the side of the building at Raymond James, not only was his face not on the initial marketing campaign, not only was he not voted a captain by his teammates, he’s not even the starting quarterback anymore.

It’s not just about the stats. Winston has some of the highest passing numbers in NFL history for anyone his age. You can take some of Winston’s stats and put them up against the best. But it’s these surrounding things that matter.

It’s the fact that, yes he hasn’t had a good defense around him, but he’s put the Bucs defense in a hole far more times than he should. It’s the fact that there are players in the locker room who don’t believe in him to the point where they’ve asked to be traded – players that know what it’s like to win. It’s the fact that the coaches and front office would even entertain the idea of benching him – and then actually doing it.

And all of that is still without even mentioning his off the field problems. Coming into the NFL, trust was the one major weakness with Winston. It was his decision making on and off the field that prevented him from being a home run prospect. So far, four years later, he’s lost his job twice already this season, once for off-field decision making and the other for on-field decision making.

Bucs QB Jameis Winston - Photo by: Getty Images
Bucs QB Jameis Winston – Photo by: Getty Images

He hasn’t learned. I’m not sure he ever will as long as he’s a Buccaneer.

I can be hard on Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter, at times, but that’s just because I know the weapons and the pieces that have been put before him as an offensive-minded head coach. With those players, you should expect better results than the Bucs have had – I hope he’d say that, too. But here, I feel for him. I feel for him because he’s handcuffed by a franchise quarterback that can’t be trusted. A quarterback who they had to come up with a different game plan for just because he couldn’t hit the throws consistently like the team did in the first three weeks of the season.

Koetter was essentially forced to play the quarterback – Winston – who wasn’t necessarily the best QB on the team. I don’t think anyone forced him to do it, but the nature of the situation demanded that Winston be the guy.

He’s not.

The Buccaneers have done everything they possibly could – relatively speaking – to help Winston. They’ve extended the contracts of Mike Evans and Cameron Brate (his two most comfortable targets). They went out and got him historically the best deep threat receiver in the game in DeSean Jackson. They’ve invested high draft picks and spent money on the offensive line. They’ve drafted tight ends and wide receivers. Heck, they even hired Koetter for Winston when Tampa Bay fired Lovie Smith

And Winston repaid them by throwing four of the ugliest interceptions I’ve seen in 2018, all in one game against the Bengals to create a deficit FitzMagic couldn’t even overcome.

Make no mistake, Ryan Fitzpatrick is starting in Carolina because he is better than Jameis Winston. Not more talented, but better and his 13 touchdowns and five interceptions this year in a little over three and a half games prove it.

Bucs QB Ryan Fitzpatrick - Photo by: Getty Images
Bucs QB Ryan Fitzpatrick – Photo by: Getty Images

Is Winston’s time in Tampa Bay up? If you ask me, it should be. How many more excuses can you give him while Fitzpatrick put up historic yards and a winning record in the same offense with the same defense behind him?

But Winston likely isn’t going anywhere at the NFL trade deadline, and the team will likely start him again at some point this year. The reason why is because this current Bucs regime may only go as far as Winston goes. That’s why I think he’ll get another crack at it, and maybe even another crack after that.

But should he? No, not here.

If Winston can’t get this together, it’s a No. 1 overall pick that is a blemish on Jason Licht’s draft record. If the team has to draft a new quarterback, they could do so with a new GM, and if that’s the case, they likely wouldn’t keep Koetter around, either.

They know this.

Their only solution is to win this year, and that’s why Fitzpatrick is starting. Because he gives this team the best chance to win. I think Fitzpatrick needs to win six out of the last nine games to save the jobs of this current regime.

It’s all on Fitzpatrick now, and all Winston can do is wait.

The Buccaneers are not his team anymore.

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Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: [email protected]

100 COMMENTS

  1. I think Winston’s been great and this is much ado about nothing.

    +10
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    Rating: -77. From 97 votes.
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    • As far as his career here in Tampa he’s had a good career. This season hasn’t been his best season though especially the Bengals game.

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      Rating: -49. From 79 votes.
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      • Winston played like someone who had not slept all night; maybe he could,’t sleep. That can destroy anyone’s job performance. He has played and can play much better. Staring down receivers; terrible mechanics; awful decisions – he is much better than this. Diagnose the cause(s) and fix it(them). Meanwhile, play Fitzpatrick. In baseball, the manager is expected to pull his starter when the starter clearly is having a bad start. And, some starters get put on a short leash for a while. Winston should have been on a short leash, and he should have been pulled sooner. That game was winnable at halftime and even after the third interception.

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        Rating: +14. From 14 votes.
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        • He probably is not ever sleeping,the new baby would have alot to do with that. Also he knows that the team was happy with Fitzpatrick and he is embarassed by his 3 game suspension. He is under huge pressure in many ways. The Bucs should have a sports psychologist on staff for him(and others)at One Buc Place.

          +12
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          Rating: +10. From 14 votes.
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    • Are you out of your mind? IF you ignore the off-field stuff, he’s an elite talent who wastes that talent making bad decisions slowwwwly. I confess to being an idiot as I wanted Mariota and he’s been almost as frustrating but for different reasons. Neither are Ryan Leaf or Jamarcus Russell… so it could be worse? You have to wish him well and send him on his way getting whatever you can in return. Those 4 picks last week and the ones dropped make for some ugly tape… but maybe someone is willing to bet/hope they can release his inner 4 TD, 90% completion persona… but not us with or without Koetter. That pirate ship has sailed.

      +38
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      Rating: +28. From 48 votes.
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      • When did Leaf or Russel throw for 4000 yards ? Jameis was brought in and thrown to the wolves and he was what just 20 ! And that was behind as bad an OL as we have now. Geoff could not even learn the playbook and now look. Favre was sitting on the bench at Atlanta before being traded. Manning started as a rookie and had a terrible year behind a decent OL.

        We recently had a few young QBs get off to fast start as rookies – One still recovering from season ending injury. That’s an anomaly, IMO.

        In summary I still subscribe to the old school notion that you never start a rookie at QB.

        Now in regards to his 4 INTs…I just re-watched the game and focused on all 4 INTs he threw.

        Number 1: Was pressured, man in face and threw it high but was reachable according to Evans comment after the game.

        Number 2: Was tipped. Again man in his face.

        Don’t forget as this is happening the Bengals are on their way to 5 sacks, numerous pressures and blockers are outright missing their blocks.

        Number 3: Again man in his face. He lost grip and the ball was slipping as it came out his hand.

        Number 4: Pressure in face, something was wrong with the way the route was run but it was a stinker – All on Jameis but I wonder why in the hell they called a pass to the flat in the shadow of our goal posts.

        By now Jameis was clearly rattled and pressing so taking him out was the smart thing to do.

        Now what can be done to improve this ? Jameis has good pocket presence except for one thing that repeatedly happened Sunday, he needs to work on this. When he is staring down a blitzer or missed block results in a DL coming free straight at him he gets lead feet. He does not move or side step well. You can say “Oh he should just eat it and take the sack” but the good QBs side step many of what look like sure sacks. I guarantee you there are people out there who see this too and are just waiting on TB to make another one of their stupid trades and Winston will move on, get good coaching and have a good career. TB has made this dumb move repeatedly since I became a charter fan in 1976 – Trade or cut good QBs for a bag o’ magic beans.

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        Rating: -2. From 22 votes.
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        • Drew Brees in year three threw 11 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Brett Favre in year three threw 19 touchdowns and 24 interceptions. Peyton Manning in year four threw 26 touchdowns to 23 interceptions. Matt Stafford fared the best of them but still in his fourth year threw 20 touchdowns to 17 interceptions.

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          Rating: +12. From 12 votes.
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          • I bet the rams are counting their blessings right now that they did not hurry Geoff !

            BTW, I was at the game in Tampa stadium when Favre came in when they benched the magic man. I was like, “Who does this guy think he is flinging the ball around like that ?”

            “In the second game of the 1992 season, the Packers played the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Buccaneers were leading 17–0 at halftime when head coach Mike Holmgren benched starting quarterback Don Majkowski and Favre played the second half.”

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          • The NFL was a very different league in those days … defenses were still dominant, as were running games … today it is all offense and all passing, with very weak defenses due to the rules. Comparing TDs and INTs from even a decade ago to today is like comparing baseball stats from the dead ball era to today.

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            Rating: +2. From 6 votes.
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        • Who is Geoff?

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          • OMG – The ghost of miss jones – GOFF. Did you think I meant anyone else ?

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          • I did not. The question was asked in jest. But maybe you should buy yourself a pair of panties that fit, the ones you’re wearing seem to be a little bunched

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  2. I said last week that we have to give Winston a good running game before judging and i think we had a decent run game against the Bengals but Winston still continued to do the mistakes and it almost seems the defense knew what he was gonna do before be was gonna do it. They were happily dropping players into coverage and leaving underneath stuff wide open knowing he wouldn’t take the safe option and he did exactly that. One of his worst games when he was playing for his career not something i want to see in a franchise QB. Now that being said we wont be worse enough to get a high draft pick next year so we almost have to mortgage our 2-3 years of future to move up and grab a QB in draft or we have to find some free agent but i dont know how many are available next year. A promising season is now starting to feel like a lost cause.

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    Rating: +23. From 31 votes.
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    • Yep exactly. I want nothing but the best for Winston but his decision making doesn’t seem to have gotten better.

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      Rating: +18. From 30 votes.
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  3. The management would keep there job had they played best QB and get to playoffs, but fact they did not play best players shows they deserve to get fired.
    When they had ball off to RJ they lose the important down and put the team 3rd and long, they play him to save there job.
    When they put fat man Vea in the game he looks like a fool, big plays are made by other team.
    If the GM cared about the team, remember there are 53 players with families to take care of not mention the coaches and fans.
    To save face they play Fat man out of shape and RJ now both injured, Fatman needs spend a year with good trainer and save his future both should have been on practice squad, because both were not good enough to make the team. But GM forced them and a loser QB on Dirk and now Dirk looks bad also.
    Dirk is not that stupid Jason forcing this crap on him. How do you feel about the better players released to save face on you bust draft .

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    Rating: -30. From 52 votes.
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    • You keep saying Vea should be on the Practice Squad; dude, any team could call him up and take him off the PS.

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      Rating: +16. From 18 votes.
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      • That would be good then they could pay him the 8 mil, No one would touch him with 10′ pole and pay his first draft contract

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        Rating: -30. From 32 votes.
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        • I generally don’t resort to flat-out name calling, but the truth is the truth. You’re an idiot

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          Rating: +6. From 6 votes.
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  4. Where I’m at with Winston is he is still the future. You can’t give up on him even after his poor performance against the Bengals, every QB has had bad games and have had multiple INTs in a game so why is it that when it happens to Winston these fans are ready to run him out of town? Yeah we all are tired of his turnover issues, overthrows, and dumb decisions and yes we are tired of him saying he needs to not turn the ball over but this should not and does not mean this isn’t his team and he’s done here. Yes he did not do himself any justice by getting suspended 3 games. Yes he’s 19-29 as a starter but that’s an unfair stat to hang over any QBs head because you could have a perfect game with a perfect stat line of 30-30, 250 YDs, 5 TDs and still lose because your defense allows the other team to score 36. There were several games that Winston got us the lead, was driving to get us the win or put us in position to tie or win and the defense blew it or the kicker missed it and now that loss is on Winston’s statline. I counted 6 games in the 2017 season in which the Bucs should have won but our defense blew it, our kicker missed kicks, and Humphries fumbled in Buffalo which would have been a game winning drive had he not. The benching is warranted and I’m glad they’re starting Fitzpatrick which may give him time to reflect and get himself together but cutting ties with him and letting him leave elsewhere would be a mistake this franchise has done too many times with other players (Steve Young, Doug Williams, Aqib Talib, Blount, Michael Bennett, Revis etc.). Why is it that every other QB in the league can have absolutely HORRIBLE games and horrible performances but Winston can’t? Stafford was benched for throwing multiple INTs in a game a few years ago. Mariota is having an absolutely horrid season but they’re not trying to run him out of town. So lets say at the end of the season we let Winston go and move forward with Fitzpatrick, what if Fitzpatrick decides to leave to another team because he’s currently on a 1 year deal then that’ll leave us with Griffin who hasn’t even taken a snap in the regular season. Then we’ll have to invest a draft pick on a QB in the 2019 draft if we let him go, not only that there’s no telling where we’ll finish this season because we’re not tanking due to us trying to make the playoffs. Instead of getting rid of Winston ride it out and go from there or this will be another mistake by letting him go.

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    Rating: -20. From 96 votes.
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    • I think the problem this year is the biggest problem on the team is Winston’s performance. Two more more interceptions every game he played (and only two in Chicago because he only played 30 minutes). Last game was fully at fault for the loss as Fitzpatrick even tied it up more than 2 TDs down and he brought them all the way back. The previous week against Cleveland the defense (shockingly) and the running game (shockingly again) won the game since he threw 3 INTs and did just enough not to cost them to win.

      I would not worry however. He will be here through year 5. They made the same mistake with Testaverde and don’t expect them to change now. He stayed on for 6 years as they tried to make him a better decision maker – it never happened. He played in the NFL for nearly 18 years and was one of the top yardage passers in NFL history. Except for a couple of years he never made the playoffs as a starter, and never kept it together enough to get to a Super Bowl as he always deep sixed a game with multiple INTs. I see the same for Winston. He has not shown any improvement in over 3 years now, and the odds are almost nil that he will ever improve to a level good enough to be a good starting NFL QB. I am sure Tampa will waste another year on him but it won’t amount to anything.

      +27
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      Rating: +14. From 40 votes.
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      • I’m only going to take issue with your initial sentence. The biggest problem on the team is not Winston, although he’s a close 2nd place, but the defense until the past 2 games (we would be 6-1 if not for both). You might be correct about the team keeping Winston around for his 5th year, but the Glazers didn’t purchase the Bucs until after Testaverde’s departure. The Glazers might not have the patience with Winston you think they will, but we’ll see about that after the season.

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        Rating: +17. From 19 votes.
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        • Good point Eric. We will see if the Glazers have the same patience or not. I think they might but I could be wrong about that.

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    • A commenter who uses Bucco Bruce for his icon, lecturing the rest of us about the quarterback of the future?

      Seriously???

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      Rating: -6. From 12 votes.
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    • Correct. I too have watched the many ridiculous moves the Bucs have made since 1976. Oh man did the bigots ever hate Doug Williams who had a spotless record across the board but he was Black. Steve Young – No one could coach him good enough to not take off running – We give up and he is in the HOF.

      BTW, Fitz threw 6 INTs in 2016 against KC and the Jets stuck with him

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      Rating: +7. From 7 votes.
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  5. Agreed with this article. Who does Winston remind me of? Another Bucs #1 pick – Vinny Testaverde. Never could stop throwing critical INTs, and the Bucs kept him for 6 long years before giving up on him. He occasionally played a little better outside of Tampa but basically rooted around the NFL for many years never amounting to much of anything. I see the same future for Winston. Even Josh Freeman had one good year before he had a meltdown of confidence and his career ended. Winston may never even see that level of success.

    The Bucs will stick with Winston – probably paying him for his 5th year thinking they can “fix him.” It won’t work. History is repeating itself. It is really too bad, another 5 years will go down the drain with a franchise QB who cannot make good decisions.

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    Rating: +13. From 27 votes.
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    • Vinny Testaverde? Seriously? That’s a stretch. Vinny only threw more TDs than INTs 7 times in his career and he played 21 years, only got selected to 2 Pro Bowls. Winston is not that bad. Winston is in his 4th year and out of his 4 years hes thrown more TDs that INTs 3 times and already has a Pro Bowl under his belt, franchise records and NFL records. Winston needs to get his act together and he can do it, he has it in him.

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      Rating: -14. From 40 votes.
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      • It’s all about winning and neither of them know how to do it when they are under pressure. This the NFL, not Miami or FSU.

        +17
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        Rating: +12. From 22 votes.
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      • Seriously Testaverde. Throwing one more TD than iINT is not a great year. They years he did better were:
        14 TD 9 INTs – 1993 (Cleveland Browns)
        17 TDs 10 INTs – 1995 (Cleveland Browns)
        33 TDs 19 INTs – 1996 (Baltimore Ravens)
        18 TDs 15 INTs – 1997
        29 TDs 19 INTs – 1998
        15 TDs 14 INTs – 2001 (NY Jets)
        7 Tds 2 INTS – 2003
        1 TD 0 INTS – 2006 (New England Patriots)

        His two pro bowl years he melted down in the playoffs, throwing multiple picks in the Ravens losses each year (his best years). He never made it to a Super Bowl because he could never stop throwing the INTs long enough to win enough games in a row. Sure he played better, but never well enough to win it all (even though those Raven’s teams were fantastic – they gave up on him after three years of better play from him).

        The fact that even the team he played best for only kept him three years show he was not a really a good QB. The Ravens realized this when he melted down in the playoffs every year.

        I will give you this – Winston is better than Testaverde in some ways. The one way he is not (and has not even the other three years) is the number of bad throws he makes. He threw a lot of INTs the first three seasons – 15, 18, and 11. The third year he did show improvement and that gave everyone hope. Problem is he has massively regressed again.

        I am sure the Bucs will give him another chance (probably a few more chances ) and sign him to a fifth year. It is what they did with Testaverde and he never amounted to anything. I expect Winston to be the same. I will eat this words if I am wrong.

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        Rating: +4. From 6 votes.
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  6. I wanted him over Mariota and still would take him over Mariota today.

    I’m probably in the minority, but I still have faith Winston can get things turned around.

    +26
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    Rating: -13. From 65 votes.
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    • Take a look at Mariotta’s stats. He did well his first two years when he was not a pocket passer and they let him play like he did in college. Then they forced him to play pocket his third year and his performance declined drastically. He played in 15 games but started about half of them it got so bad.

      This year is no better. More INTs than TDs and he got hurt. Mariotta is not going to be a great NFL QB, he maybe a servicable starter. Time will tell as I suspect Tennessee will give him another chance. He may improve but I would not count on it.

      For Winston, the Bucs won’t give up. They will waste another year because that is what NFL teams do for promising, strong armed QBs who have bad decision making. It almost never works out. Vinny Tesaverde in Tampa was a perfect example of this. He played 6 years in Tampa, never could stop throwing crucial INTs. Threw for a ton of yards over a long NFL career, never put it together to not throw INTs in bunches except a couple of years and when he did not, his team made the playoffs. Problem was in the playoffs, he then would throw a bunch of INTs and they would lose – usually the first playoff game, always by the second playoff game. In best case now with Winston, that is what some team will get. A better year once in awhile which the team can overcome and make the playoffs – but a meltdown in the playoffs at best. That is the best case for Winston now, anything more based on NFL history of this type of QB is not warranted.

      +2
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    • Mariota? The guy who has 3 TDs and 5 INTs, 3 FUM, 1,030 YDS in 6 games this year? Just making sure that’s the guy you’re talking about lol

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      Rating: +8. From 24 votes.
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      • Who also doesn’t have the offensive weapons Winston has.

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        Rating: +1. From 15 votes.
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        • Yet Mariota has a much better offensive line, running game, and defense so what’s your point?

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          Rating: +6. From 14 votes.
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  7. Winston will make a very good back up qb on another team!

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    Rating: +9. From 27 votes.
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    • I agree, and I’m not a Jameis “hater” at all. I was excited when the team drafted him, but his decision-making skills are just plain awful. I was encouraged by what we saw of him during the preseason, which is what all of us thought we might get once his suspension was over. Alas, it hasn’t happened that way.

      This team has some really difficult decisions to make during the off-season. Although I don’t fault Licht for drafting Winston (remember, Lovie was the one who fell in love with Winston enough to throw a game to make sure we drafted him), he’s definitely on the hot-seat with the decisions he’ll start making in 3 months…assuming he’s still the GM.

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  8. Winston has been so much worse this year than in his first 3 years. Its insane. If he was playing at the level he played at in 2016 or 2017 than we wouldnt be benching him, even if Fitz was playing better.

    He does not deserve to start right now but honestly its scary to thing about completely throwing in the towel just to watch him figure it out 2 years from now for some other team.

    Yes all those QBs figured it out in their 2nd and 3rd years, but they were also older and had more QB experience under their belt from HS-College-NFL.

    Here is what I would suggest.

    Give him 1 more year. He was lighting it up in preseason and if he get back to his 2017 self minus the fumbles, which he seems to have done, then he is a good QB with the potential to be great. But obviously coming back from suspension Jameis is not right in the head right now.

    If the current regime does not survive this year it might also be worth seeing if a new QB coach/HC could fix Jameis.

    +15
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    Rating: +7. From 23 votes.
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    • Not for 21 Million!

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      Rating: +7. From 11 votes.
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    • He will get one more year for that very reason. They gave Testaverde 6 years for worse play. Never improved his decision making. Even played for a Super Bowl calliber team Baltimore Ravens during his career for three years, played better (more TDs than INTs) but melted down in the playoffs and never amounted to much even with two pro bowl seasons those three years. Ravens gave up and moved on after just three years with him.

      So the Bucs will give him the 5th year most likely. He will continue to disappoint even if he shows occasional improvement in decision making.

      +1
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      Rating: -3. From 5 votes.
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      • “They” will be out of a job in a couple months.

        There will be a new regime, and it will not be tied in the least to Winston, and will want to build on the good offensive skill players by playing Fitz at least another year, draft a young QB, and focus on rebuilding the defense, the O-line, and the running back group.

        No can do if paying $21M to a bad quarterback.

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        Rating: +3. From 9 votes.
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        • Who is the young QB you are drafting? 2019 or 2020? Just curious.

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          • I’m not a draft expert.

            But I do remember extremely well how much shit that Andy Reid and the Chiefs tooks when they moved up in the draft a year and a half ago to take Mahomes (who????), whom virtually everybody not a Chief said would be a terrible bust in the NFL.

            Ditto with all the snarky comments made by Bucs fans and especially Winston fans about how horrible the quarterback class was in 2016 compared to the draft in 2015, and that Wentz and Goff were destined to be horrible busts, not fit to shine Winston’s cleats, blahblahblah,

            You see, there actually are GMs and coaches who know how to pick talent, and coach and develop that talent, even in the fast of vast amounts of snarky criticism. And yet they produce winners.

            While the Bucs don’t.

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    • He’s too impulsive and it’s hurts him on and off the field. That’s is his single biggest shortcoming and far harder to correct than mechanics in a game as fast paced as football.

      Overriding that instinctive urge would slow his mental processing down dramatically until the tendency was corrected. Average reaction time for his age is from 250-300ms so just over a quarter of second, to consciously process the decision would take 3-4 times as long.

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  9. That was an excellent article that articulates my thoughts on the QB situation in Tampa. I would only add that it is not all on Fitzpatrick. The Offensive line is now the only weakness on the Tampa Bay Offense. In my opinion, get some creative pass protection to keep the “magic” going. And, make Griffin the #2 QB.

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    • That’s fair. The offensive line has not been great.

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      • If we are not “forced” into drafting a QB in the first round by our circumstances next spring maybe we can grab a good RG or RT in the first. I am unsure what the future for Alex Cappa is at this time.

        No matter who the GM is at that time maybe we could draft a QB like Clayton Thorson from Northwestern in the second round and actually spend a couple of years developing him as an NFL QB like was done in times past. Again, I am totally unsure of what we have in Ryan Griffith right now.
        ____________
        Go Bucs!!!!!!!

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  10. Winston reminds me of what the late Bill Walsh once said of Steve DeBerg: “He’s just good enough to get you beat.” And that just seems to be the case with Winston. He will make some terrific passes, and occasionally pull the football down and scramble for first downs when protection breaks down, but over the course of every game, he makes a few critical mistakes that keep costing this team wins. Whether it is interceptions or fumbles, the turnovers on a weekly basis just don’t go away. He should be winless as a starting QB this season. The Browns lost that game more than the Bucs won it. His turnovers should have cost the Bucs that game. Had he played turnover-free football in all of his starts this season, the Bucs would almost certainly have beaten the Falcons, the Browns, and the Bengals, even with the defense as bad as it has been. I think you are absolutely correct, Mr. Sikkema. That Heisman season at FSU was an aberration. Every other season of his, both in college and in the pros, has featured the turnover problem. He could get away with it at FSU because the Seminoles were just so much better than their opponents, but in the NFL, it just doesn’t work that way. It is very unlikely that it will get better. The tape doesn’t lie. He has been in the same offensive system his entire pro career. Progress should have been made by now, and instead he appears to be regressing. If I am the Bucs, I just have to cut my losses at this point and move on. He hasn’t earned that $20.9 million option year, much less a new long-term contract. So he joins the ranks of Vinny Testaverde, Trent Dilfer, and Josh Freeman of 1st-round QB draft picks supposedly destined to be the Bucs’ “franchise quarterback” that, for whatever reasons, just don’t pan out.

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  11. I always..LMAO at my tem..the Bucs..every GD year. So we want to move on from Jameis after arguably his worst game in his career. All QB’s have had a couple. Need I remind those of you..who were in diapers and still suckling back in the day…QB’s Doug Williams, Steve Young, Trent Dilfer all played here. Fans got mad at them to. They went elsewhere and won..Superbowls!! I think differently. I think..Koetter should go. He won’t reach 500 this year. Bring in a new HC with some different ideas. Keep Jameis. he had a bad game people. fitzmagic is a journeyman for a reason. Ever thought about that? And..hey..lets give Griffin a try. What can we lose?
    The season? Its lost already!!!!!!!!

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  12. Nice article and well reasoned, Trevor. Answering your questions- I wanted the Bucs to draft Mariota due to Winston’s character issues in college. Over time, he won me over with his personality and crazy play -maddening at times, thrilling at other times. I came to believe in his work ethic, study and commitment to the team. And I really thought this year would be his time to shine. But those off-field demons came back to haunt him and his team. I think Fitz Magic is in his head. He’s chasing the ghost of the first two games. I do believe that Winston needs to sit, maybe for the rest of the season and learn what it really takes to lead from Fitz. I do believe that Winston will someday shine in this league and I hope it will be here in Tampa Bay. I too have been throwing things at my TV, but I believe it’s time to take a deep breath and not give up on a 24 year old with tons of talent, heart and a will to win. It won’t happen this year. But I do believe it will happen.

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  13. good Article Trevor and agree with your analysis. Time to move on folks.

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  14. Koetter is an offensive minded coach, right? Isn’t this the best Bucs offense in our entire history? Despite an iffy o line, despite no elite rb, despite a streaky journeyman qb, despite a bust #1 pick , despite a kicker who cannot. Driven by an elite group of receivers Koetter has at least given us our best offense ever. Do not forget that our SB winning offense were poor for most of the season until the playoffs.

    Koetters biggest weakness has been that of trusting his friend to build a defense for the team.

    If Licht’s fate hinged on that #1 pick in 2015 then he was doomed way before the sun went down in Chicago. The choice was Winston or Mariota both of whom have been considered busts. Most of the first rounders who panned out have only become decent pros.

    I only see 3 stars in 2015 first round – rbs Gurley and Gordon and if Licht had used a #1 pick on an rb he would have lost his job already. Peters is the other and he didn’t make it to a second contract with the team that drafted him. Licht’s only good option was that trade the Eagles were shopping around (sorry forgot details).

    I would keep Winston if he would sign a team friendly contract with low guaranteed money and performance escalators. For wins and ball protection not just yards and tds. He could show true humility and maturity with these terms.

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  15. Great article. I think Jameis has totally lost the confidence in his teammates. Can he be salvaged? Yes, but not necessarily in tampa unless there is a coaching change. My question is, does Jameis just need a different coach in his ear? A different offense that doesn’t have every attempt 15+ yds down the field? Maybe, but I’m not for blowing up everything for one guy. I want him to succeed, and wish him the best, but in my opinion, he is done in Tampa

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  16. Lets don’t panic here. Winston should sit and be In Active the rest of the season. We shouldn’t follow thru exercising the option. If Winston was willing to play 2019 for 8 Million maybe we sign him, but he won’t be handed the starting job or he’ll just go back as same ole same ole.

    If I’m the Glazer’s, I’m hiring an experienced President for the Buccaneer Operations and let that person handled what to do. This is something that should have been done after Father Glazer died and not have the children be so closely involved. Hey the Glazer’s are great people; kind, giving, caring. This doesn’t mean they can handle a very ruthless business such as the NFL.

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    • Horse, I’m with you all the way – your plan is just what the Bucs need.

      Inactivating Winston prevents him from getting a $21M injury award, killing our cap space in 2019.

      Hiring a quality President of Football Operations makes tremendous sense, because the baby Glazers are senseless when it comes to running the franchise. Another commenter suggested Tony Dungy as that person – I think he would be a superb choice for PFO. He would see that the defense gets properly rebuilt, he knows the entire universe of NFL personnel, so he would be very qualified to hire the GM and provide him overall direction. He has terrific longstanding ties to the Tampa Bay community. Really just a superb choice all around.

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      • Those “baby” Glazers are grown men and a woman in their 50’s. Rather them than the meddling Jerry Jones playing fantasy football and mugging for the cameras.

        I do think having a team President to hire and oversee the GM and coaching staff might help. Can’t hurt. Dungy would be at the very least, a respected option. Perhaps their are others with whom we aren’t as familiar. Thought that plan (Tom Coughlin) was working for the Jaguars when they were so successful last season. Not so sure now.

        See Naples, we can agree on some things.

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    • Horse,

      JP Peterson floated a similar idea on the radio this afternoon (Tuesday the 30th). He suggested none other than Derrick Brooks for the job. I don’t recall if he specifically said “President of Football Operations”. I did take him to mean someone who would be a football person who would be under the Glazers and over the GM, Jason Licht.

      I have also noted that Licht currently reports directly to the Glazers and has Shelton Quarles as Director of Football Operations and Mike Greenberg as Director of Football Administration among those who serve under him.

      Obviously this would mean a change in roles and responsibilities in the Buccaneer organizational chart.
      _______________
      Go Bucs!!!!!

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      • How’s it been working the last several years?

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        • I am all for the idea! The Bucs need to drastically change a bad pattern that has prevailed through different ownership eras as well as all other regime changes with the exception of our Super Bowl era.

          They need to examine every winning regime and learn what works. Then they must find a football person to oversee a solid plan.
          _____________
          Can we as fans come together somehow and start a grassroots movement that could cause the Glazers to buy into this!

          ______________
          Go Bucs!!!!!!

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  17. I’m a big Winston supporter, but am on the fence as to whether he has a future here. The fan base was never behind him, and he alienated many of his supporters with the Uber incident (which is still ongoing). He needs to sit in anonymity for a year or two behind an established starter to let wounds heal (personal and professional) and hone his craft. Pittsburgh or NE?

    That said, the Bucs ownership has a decision to make. Does it believe in Dirk? Does it believe in Winston? Or neither? Jared Goff looked like a high school QB under Jeff Fischer’s watch. He didn’t even look like he belonged in the league. Might Winston have a similar turnaround under another regime? On the flip side, might Koetter turn into Bill Belichek with “his” QB under center?

    The Koetter/Winston team has not succeeded. Might either be worth keeping without the other?

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    • The only way I see him staying if they cut him after the season voiding the contract extension and he resigns at backup pay.

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    • Those are good points.
      Neither Jimbo Fisher, DirK Koetter, Monkin, any FSU quarterback coach, any Buccaneer quarterback coach, or any private coaches could convince Winston to eat the ball or throw it out of bounds.
      That’s the problem.

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  18. lol it’s 1977 all over again. Lose to the Bucs and the coaches get fired. Boy, we have come long way. Testaverde comps are fair – do not forget Dilfer always missed high. I remember a sunday when the crowd chanted JEFF CARLSON in hopes he could come in and save the day. Craig Erickson wow. Steve Deberg -twice. Byron Leftwich. Chris Chandler. Jack Thompson. Oh shit. LMFAO.

    Bruce Gradkowski!!! Josh Freeman!!!Josh freakin Johnson!!!!!!

    Boy we really dodged a bullet with Gruden.

    Trevor needs to start a ‘Get Dungy Back’ into this organization.

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  19. I’ll start by saying I graduated from FSU and was overjoyed initially by the Bucs’ drafting of Winston. I explained away his penchant for interceptions and his off the field apparent sense of entitlement and lack of consequences for his actions. I explained away his sexual assault allegation, thinking Kinsman was a disgruntled gold-digger. As I’ve watched him play I became increasingly of the opinion that he keeps making same mistakes, the same lack of impulse control, not being able to lead a wide receiver much of the time, throwing behind and high, the interceptions, the occasional hot headed outburst. It all came to a head for me this season after the Uber incident, his apparent lying about it, his lack of contrition, and I couldn’t cheer for him any more. Watching Fitz play in those first two games was pretty damn exciting and hopeful. Seeing how well this offence could be run with excellent quarterbacking. And his play after he returned was worse than ever with the same dumb mistakes and poor technique and frequency innacuracy. I think this is all he will ever be. I can’t prove that. It’s all a projection. But so is the thought that a new coach, a different system, whatever will help him turn into that guy we saw his freshman year at Pitt. I agree he should be traded or cut. Enough is enough. If he was starting now I really think coach would lose the locker room. Those guys just want to win. And Fitz has far outplayed Winston this year. He deserves to be the starter. How fun it is to cheer for that guy who is calm and fun and charismatic and accurate and has no shady behavior off the field. Enough is enough.

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  20. High quality organizations make sound decisions and then stand behind them. Steelers have had how many Head Coaches since the Bucs came into existence. Hell, I think we have had more HCs than they have had qbs since 1976.

    Tony Dungy came from that organization and the Bucs became class the second he came through the door and lost it the second he was kicked out the door. Traded class for superbowl. Now Glazers need to swallow their pride and at least consult with the man.

    One more idea – take the Jameis money and throw it at the GM for the Falcons

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  21. The Bucs have not been Winstons team since his suspension, possibly sooner. His charade of a leader came crashing down. These guys see hin every day. They respect Fitz alot more and it shows in their play. Winston wasnt voted a captain which said it all. Too bad the regine has so much invested. If theyd have let smitty go sooner n kept fitz in it’d be a whole different story. But we know about ifs. Dirks got this thing a mess. Adios Dirky.

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  22. A couple of comments on Trevor’s piece:

    1) I don’t subscribe to any team being “owned” by a given quarterback … not even the Packers or the Patriots are owned by their quarterbacks. A team is “owned” by the owner, managed by the manager, coached by the coaches, and the players are just players, not owners.

    2) In line with point 1, quarterbacks are way overvalued and way over emphasized in importance. Football is a team sport. The league is paying way too much to quarterbacks, such that they can no longer afford to pay the key stars that do as much or more than any quarterback. Aaron Rodgers is a great quarterback, but he is NOT worth $33M a year in cap space. Tom Brady is at least as good as Rodgers, but his cap hit is half, and that is about right. And that, folks, is why the Patriots are always playing in and often winning Super Bowls, and the Packers are not.

    3) Winston is clearly not worth $21M, which the Bucs stupidly agreed to pay him next year if he is still on the roster. The Bucs cannot afford to let him play another down or even participate in another practice – they need to cut him right now, and try to trade him before the start of the league year in March.

    4) Fitz is one of the hottest quarterbacks in the league right now … and he ain’t that old at 35, going on 36. He ought to be able to play at a high level for at least one or two more years, which is plenty of time to draft a quarterback in the upper middle of the first round where we’ll end up yet again this year, and develop him and make him the next Mahomes of the NFL, just as KC did with Smith. That is our model – but it will take a complete housecleaning at One Buc Place to do that – Licht is history and must be fired as soon as possible, while letting Koetter finish out this lost season.

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    • Naplesfan, very good points.

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    • Gee Naples. I’m agreeing with you again. While the going rate for QB’s is what it is; it’s still often disproportionate to the rest of the player’s salaries. I also concur that Jameis Winston is not a $21M QB and I don’t think he’ll be here next year at that value unless he somehow gets his gig back and becomes the player we hoped he’d become by now.

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      • scubog, agree

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  23. This article might be as well just be a can of worms because it’s almost nothing but bait. I imagine I will come to this article in 6 hours and see 100 new comments and endless amounts of arguing about Winston v Mariota, coaching, defense etc etc.

    Anyway, one thing that did raise my eyebrow a bit lately is this just bizarre supposition that Koetter/Licht are fired if Winston sits or is gone. Like, why? I just know such a sentiment is going to catch flak because the fanbase is in burn-it-down mode, but I just don’t see why this is said with such certainty.

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  24. I have been a Winston supporter, because his talent is palpable. While I agree the turnovers are a problem, anybody can have a bad game or two. The thing that has really changed my mind is his inability to make the throws that utilize the skills of the receiving options and the play design. Trevor’s article does a good job of demonstrating that he is still missing the open receiver, still stares down receivers and is not able to take what the defense gives him. Watching the play-calling, it is clear that they are not running the same plays that they run for Fitz (or at least not running the routes as deep). When you have to modify the game plan because your supposed franchise QB can’t make the throws that his journeyman backup can make- its time to change your QB.

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  25. The best thing to happen for Winston is to let the dust settle and prepare for when his time comes, I’m not all to sure Fitz can last an entire season health wise you get brittle as you get older.

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  26. Will you please write a cover 78 on Jason Licht? He’s whiffed on countless free agents and blown entire draft classes and looks to be off to another awful head start with this current crop of rookies. Our 2016 draft of VHIII, Aguayo and Spence looks to rival only the Cleveland Browns as an all time terrible top 3 picks. He wanted to upgrade the secondary so he re-signs a 35 year old CB whose on play production decreased last year, spent a high 2nd on a CB with athletic deficiencies and drafted another CB in the 2nd who excelled in press coverage while employing a scheme that plays off coverage, hmmmm. The MJ Stewart pick was even more impressive when you factor in the great track record Licht had with VHIII another athletic deficient CB. This isn’t just bad drafting its stupidity. This summer he solved the riddle on the DL, he acquire a guy with proven success and guess what, he’s having success. He couldn’t help himself though dumpster diving with Mitch Unrein and Beau Allen and getting burned by more rotational players that are of no real impact to the defense. Every summer he has a chance to add an impact player at S next to Evans and every summer we hear about Conte being overlooked. We can’t move forward as an organization with a guy that is seldom right on anything that isn’t obvious. Most people will give Vita Vea time before they call him a bust but I’m ready to say he should taken Derwin James and it was the wrong move. Time could prove this to be wrong but direct me to the line where those players under Licht’s time here are located because I don’t see many. Marpets play has decreased over the past 2 seasons, Donovan wins the offseason shorts practice battle every year but is nothing more than solid. In a passing league, especially in our division it never made sense to draft a 350LB DT over a versatile piece in the secondary that DESPERATELY needed help. Warren Sapp foreshadowed this by saying Vita was too big to hold up in this weather and so far he’s right but then again what would he know lol. Licht has not changed the culture he’s become it.

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  27. The question was not compare Winston to other Q.B.’s, but should he remain a Buc. My answer is no. I thought even after the suspension that we should use this year as the make, or break point for whether to decide to keep him, or move on. I was hoping the light would finally come on for him in year four. I was hoping getting married, and having a family he would become the face of the franchise we could win with, and all be proud of. He had a great preseason not throwing picks, but those games don’t count. Now I hope he’s straitened his live out off the field, but on the field he’s clearly regressed. Something is screwed up in this kids head. So I think it’s best both parties need a clean break. He can’t be traded at 21 million for one year, but I’m sure he’ll find a landing spot as a F.A. at a much lower prove it salary. As to where do the Bucs go from here? I think a total house cleaning is in order. Licht has had 5yrs now to build a winner, and as much as some fans would like to spin it, he has not. Koetter got to his third year, and isn’t getting the job done either. A rebuild isn’t such a bad thing. Look at what the Bears are doing with a new head coach, and second year Q.B.. This team needs new leadership from top, to bottom, the sooner we start the better.

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    • I agree fully surfer, but at what point does it stop becoming a game and start becoming Reality TV? At what point do we stop watching it for the touchdowns, tackles, interceptions, field goals, great and bad plays ect and start watching it for the organizational drama, who gets cut, who gets drafted or the ever tantalizing lets rip it apart and start again saga. Where does the entertainment come from, The Game, Or the Drama? (OR BOTH)

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  28. I have agonized over where this team goes from here. The answers are not easy and management has to be having a much harder time than I am. Contrary to what most think, this isn’t about Winston vs. Mariota. We’re way past that. It’s strictly about what the franchise does if they cut ties and what they do if they keep Jameis around. Either way, I think it necessitates a regime change. You have a coach that you hired to develop Winston and he’s failed, so if you keep Jameis, the coach has to go. If you get rid of Winston, the GM completely failed in its evaluation of Winston and the coach and needs to go. Do you really think the coach stays with a new GM? I’m doubting it. The only way this whole thing ends is badly unless, by some miracle, they make the playoffs. Is anyone prepared to go there and make that prediction?

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  29. Trevor to further your point about Jameis first game at Pittsburgh he completed 92.6% of his passes for 356 yards, 4 TD’s and 0 INT’s. His college QB rating was 252.2 and guess what? That first game would remain the best game of his college or professional career by rating.

    Winston would go on to have 6 games his Freshman year where his QB rating would be 195+. Winston would never have a college game like that after Nov 16 2013. You know what happened Nov 14 2013, Trevor? The State Attorney announced the opening of the rape investigation with Winston as the target.

    While it’s easy to say that college and pro coaches figured Winston’s tendencies out after a few months there is also something to be said about the ‘Tiger Woods effect’ of a player going through personal turmoil and shame due to off the field conduct. Winston is having some of his most ineffective games on the heels of a 3 game suspension for his second sexual assault allegation and it would be hard to say that the suspension and loss of captaincy doesn’t have some relevance to his play.

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  30. It’s deja vu all over again – Yogi Berra.

    We train ‘em then give ‘em away when they fall out of favor. They go to other teams who benefit from their best years as NFL QBs.

    Stay the course with JW. He asked to be coached hard, let him have it, fire all the cannons. Benching JW is justified and appropriate as a method to break the mold he’s currently stuck in. Well done Coach K. And it will be fun to ride the Fitzmagic bus for a couple or few games before bringing JW back. JW has been able to string a few turnover free games together in the past with the Bucs. Challenge him to go back and revisit those games as the model to follow.

    Benching is a great way to grab the attention of a never-been-benched-before competitor like a 25-yr young NFL QB. Yes, young! Comparing the maturation time for other QB greats whi figured it out after 3 years in the NFL is not fair because JW started younger than they did.

    Benching is not the same as giving up on him. I fully expect him to come back better and stronger, and this time hopefully as a Buc, and not with some other team.

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  31. Hire Dungy keep Winston and Fitz bring in Romo go Bucs!!!!!

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  32. As always, excellent article.

    I’m totally digging the term, “Sunk Cost Fallacy”. That’s where we are with Jameis. Here’s the deal, in my opinion…we fans deserve a little hope, not just prolonged suffering. Time to make decisions that will “keep” the team mojo and “keep” the fan base.

    Sure, we’ll be the perpetual underdog…but at least it’ll be fun. My personal expectations are level-set regarding Fitz. I trade on the hope that he’ll surprise us all with a strong run. At minimum, I won’t feel punched in the nuts each week b/c I’ll be expecting it. When I’m not…like in the 4th quarter this week, even a loss doesn’t sting as much.

    I’m HAPPY to concede this season (intellectually) and trade on the exciting (emotional) hope of a new coaching staff and added team members…CTRL-ALT-DEL-JW.

    Frankly, I don’t think there are that many team roster moves to be made…just shored up. We need an infusion of positive new energy. New hope.

    Give me that and I’ll give you my undivided attention the next theee years, despite our win/loss record. I WANT TO BE ENTERTAINED!

    Jameis may be a rockstar one day. Good for him. I’ll root for him.

    Elsewhere.

    Now let’s just bubble wrap him to ensure we don’t have to pay him $20 million next year due to injury.

    Cheers to HOPE and CHANGE!

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  33. Those QBs such as Manning, Favre and others started in the league decades before it became Arena Ball rules. Because of the pass-happy rules this is why we see so many QBs with Completion % above 60 or even 65% and up. We also see about 15 QBs that could easily pass for 4000 yds, 10 QBs with Ratings over 100.00.

    So the rules favor QBs not throwing so many Picks but Winston like Blake Bortles just are Mistake Prone. And Bortles doesn’t have the weapons Jameis has. Just poor decision-making and very inaccurate on most of his deep balls.

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  34. None of this is good. For all of the Fitz Magic warm fuzzies, the guy is a 34 year old journeyman for a reason. I’m hoping he’s got one last hot streak in him, but I’m keeping the rose colored glasses on the nightstand.

    I supported making Jamies our #1 pick, and have consistently supported him as our future QB. Reality is a tough thing though. He’s obviously not worth the big contract, maybe the $8 million or so as others have suggested. But last week was a gut punch to the whole organization. This has to settle for a while before I can make sense of it.

    In the meantime, winning can help heal many wounds. Go Fitz, Go Bucs!

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  35. Not necessarily about Jameis…but to get a coach from the college ranks…Harbaugh! Harbaugh! Harbaugh!

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  36. How excited will DJax be to not simply be a professional wind sprinter?!

    His routes will now have potential purpose!

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  37. Those other 3rd year players mentioned had an OL that could block and a defense who could stop at least Hillsborough High School.

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  38. Trevor, it felt like I was reading a review of Josh Freeman…we simply are not moving forward as a franchise. It’s been a gradual decline since 2003 and we may be hitting rock bottom now. That performance by Winston was as bad as anything Steve Deberg, or Trent Dilfer if you prefer, put up as Yuccaneers. We have regressed to the 1980s, and as fond as I am of that decade, my fondness has absolutely nothing to do with the suffering I endured as a Bucs fan at that time.

    Let’s get somebody in charge that actually understands football, talent evaluation, and how to win in the NFL (like Dungy did). Then let him get the players in place, and let’s leave this dumpster fire behind.

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  39. Trevor needs to do his homework. Stating that all of these quarterbacks turned the corner after year 2 is not even close to accurate.

    Drew Brees in year three threw 11 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Brett Favre in year three threw 19 touchdowns and 24 interceptions. Peyton Manning in year four threw 26 touchdowns to 23 interceptions. Matt Stafford fared the best of them but still in his fourth year threw 20 touchdowns to 17 interceptions.

    You may have chosen the worst 4 quarterbacks in history to prove your point…

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  40. I listened to a good portion of Rock Riley’s radio program this afternoon (Tuesday the 30th). One segment featured a discussion with Jeff Carlson a former NFL quarterback. I took away two interesting ideas. Please not that I am neither quoting exactly nor paraphrasing what they said. This is my take on what I heard.

    First Koetter and his Quarterback’s coach, Mike Bajakian, seem to have failed to correct a basic flaw in Winston’s footwork in the past three and a half years or so. It is about his mechanics.

    Second, Koetter does not appear to have adjusted his offensive scheme very much to take into account Winston’s particular constellation of strengths and weaknesses. Just how far a coach should go in order to accommodate the specifics of a given quarterback I don’t know.

    Is this correct?

    This was my understanding and inferences thereof. I am hoping that I have oversimplified what I heard. I hope that those of you with the greater depth of football knowledge such as Trevor and others will address this. If anyone else heard the program feel free to correct me or to clarify what they may have said.
    _____________
    Go Bucs!!!!

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    • No, it is incorrect. Coaching staff has worked countless hours and so has private coaching. It definitely is in his head and when he is behind in a game or tied, he goes back as the river boat gambler; problem though, he usually makes even poor decisions and why he misses throws so much is because he’s still not sure if he’s doing the right thing. Other words he talks the talk, but doesn’t walk the walk. In the now Winston is sucking; not sure this team can help him, but maybe a new start elsewhere will force him to really face his bad habits. I do want him to succeed, but he’s had enough chances here and it’s time to move on.

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      • Thanks!

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      • Horse – Say what you want about his tendencies and decision making, Koetter has never developed an elite qb an doesn’t know how to do so, thus the failure to correct them will still fall on the coach. Always has and always will, and he will more than likely get fired for it. Senile is correct about them not designing an offense to suit his strengths, as I’ve outlined below. You are clamoring that a new start elsewhere will help him confront these faults (which would inherently include a new coaching staff with the skillset needed to help him do so) but refuse to admit that both the coaching staff and Winston share the blame for this situation here in Tampa.

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  41. I don’t believe the Glaziers think that Koetter or Licht are the problem and frankly I don’t either. With a historically bad defensive scheme our offensive with a journeyman QB and a turnover machine leading the way have kept us competitive in every game so far this year. We have a gem on offense and finally cut ties with what was keeping our defense from clicking. This offensive scheme is top 5 in the league. It hums with whoever at QB (as long as you don’t hand the ball to the other team on record pace), RB, offensive line… Winston can go. Ive been a fan. Ive rooted for him, I’ve been on his side. But, in my opinion he’s just got too many holes in his game. It’s been said that he can make all the throws, but he can’t and doesn’t (ask Djax). He holds back this offense. I love his fire and wish him all the best personally and professionally. Somewhere else. Im for drafting someone to learn behind Fitz who has potential. Winston’s future doesn’t excite me. Time to wash our hands and concentrate on what is exciting. That’s why we watch isn’t it?

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  42. I can’t believe the Bucs didn’t trade Winston and Jackson before the October 30th deadline. The Bucs have no chance to make the playoffs and Jameis may be the QB of the future somewhere, but not in Tampa. The guy needs a change of scenery. Let some other team deal with his foolishness on and off the field. Jameis has proven to be a sexual predator off the field to go along with his silly ass finger licking routine on the field. The guy is hard headed, he thinks his arm can get a receiver who is double covered open. I don’t know what the Bucs can get for Winston, but whatever it is, it is better than having to put up with his antics. He has been a blight on this city every since he arrived. When you lay down with dogs, you come up with fleas. Desean Jackson is still a very good player, but he doesn’t want to be here. He came here because of his belief in Winston and some righteous bucs to go along with it. It didn’t take Desean long to learn that Jameis was nothing but fools gold. The Bucs could have gotten a decent draft pick for Desean because he is one of those ageless players like Washington Redskins CB Darrell Green.

    The Bucs need to usher Jason (Friday the 13th) Licht out the door. My mailman knows more about football than Jason does. Trade a 3rd and 4th round pick to move back into the second round to draft a kicker. It was a panic merchant move. Another O-lineman should have been taken with that move, but Licht would have gotten another Brett Moritz with his acumen.

    Dirk Koetter is a guy I have some empathy for. He can coach offense, but he got strapped with a below par defense. This team should have spent every high pick on O-line and D-line until they had a solid underpinning, then go after the skill position players.

    The Bucs were a much better run team when Malcolm Glazer was alive. The purchase of Manchester United sealed the Bucs to eternal mediocrity. I would be happy if the Glazers sold the team to a football guy.

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  43. SeniorSenile

    Don’t just assume because he runs a website and has access to stats that Trevor has some great breadth of football knowledge. Alot of this lacks any sort of context. He wants to credit those quarterbacks with having “figured it out” by their fourth year, simply assuming because their interception percentages rose (after being downright ugly so far in their careers) by that time, and that Winston’s has fallen. We’ll not mention that Winston’s only started enough games to cover a 3 year spread – not 4 – but we should take into context that part of his assumption, aside from a drop in interceptions, were wins. You can blindly think that these quarterbacks won those games by themselves, or you can take into account that football is a team sport, played in context and situationally, and that most of these referenced quarterbacks had either a HOF running back to turn around and hand the ball to (Manning – Edgerrin James; Brees – LaDainian Tomlinson) and a competent defense, or a truly offensive minded head coach who understood how to put his reckless minded QB in a position to LIMIT those mistakes (Favre – Mike Holmgren). The only outlier to this is Matt Stafford, who – in his 3rd year – threw for 41 touchdowns. Not only did he have a Calvin Johnson to throw to, but he quickly returned back to earth in years 4 and 5, throwing 17 and 19 interceptions respectively.

    The alarmist prisoner of the moment movement that would love nothing more than to scapegoat Jameis Winston as the guy who should be dropped into the Gulf to salvage this team, will always skip over the things that you’ve stated. Winston has always been in elite company (per the numbers) in regards to things like play-action passing, throwing off rollouts with moving pockets, perimeter comeback/out concepts, etc. They can hashtag the “weapons for winston” movement all they’d like, they’d still be ignoring that this offense was never built to suit his strengths. At that, this team was never even built to win more than 9 games, such is the case when you build a team completely backwards, from the outside-in. They went and brought in a bunch of outside skill position guys and ignored the trenches and running attack for YEARS, and expected a quarterback 20-24 years old to be Aaron Rodgers in the NFC South. This is evidenced by the fact that against Cleveland, Winston’s second full game back, they could not run the ball to maintain a two touchdown lead so they asked their quarterback to dropback 62 times against a defense that led the league in takeaways by far.

    So yeah, when you ignore mechanics and have a thickheaded offensive system that doesn’t compliment your young quarterback, along with a historically bad defense and a kicking game that can’t get out of bed, you’re not going to win games and he’s going to feel an unearthly amount of pressure to win the game on every snap, hence his heroball mentality that gets him killed. I said it the day we drafted him, the formula for young quarterbacks IS AND ALWAYS WILL BE a solid running game and a defense. None of this excuses his play last week, as it was a complete meltdown, but let’s not act like this team hasn’t been going nowhere fast – Fitzmagic aside.

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  44. This article panders to the pro-Fitz crowd/anti-Winston crowd. This article draws a divisive line, not a unifying line. Sorry Trevor, but it does.

    If you want to truly unify as a team, you just need to support the coach that he’s made the right decision FOR NOW. I’m 100% in agreement that Fitz should start this Sunday. Anything beyond that is speculation that is driving for answers NOW. It’s cutthroat. There’s no room for redemption. You literally wanna chuck that #1 pick investment in the garbage. That’s poor business. The best businesses don’t operate like that.

    There’s still time for Winston to develop into the franchise QB. He’s just not there mentally right now. Those interceptions were a brand of interceptions we’ve never seen from him. This has been a tough year on multiple levels for Jameis Winston to prove himself as the franchise QB. It’s not just the off-field issues but that’s obviously the biggest part of it. He’s got no one but himself to blame for that; however, no need to pile on with this narrative. I’d like to think there’s more redeeming qualities to Bucnation than what I’m reading and seeing now.

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    • Again, not for 21 million. Winston has to get his stubborn agent to sign a 1 year 8 million deal guaranteed deal if he wants to still be a Buc.

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      • Well, if it HAD TO BE DONE TODAY, then maybe so. But your comment disregard 9 more games we MUST play. God forbid Fitz get injured on Sunday and all of a sudden for some inexplicable reason Winston is throwing TDs all over the place and not throwing a single INT. Not saying that’s going to happen, but these message boards all over Buc fansites and media sites are just assuming way too much right now.

        Koetter’s made the right decision. Fitz is starting this Sunday. The “whose team is this” talky talk is nothing but a narrative to keep the wheels of this business going when for practical reasons it doesn’t mean shit. For practical reasons, this is the Glazers team to lose and they’ve been doing a good job of that since Malcolm passed away. There’s the real truth as to whose team this is. It’s not Winston’s. It’s not Licht’s. It’s not Koetter’s. It’s not Fitzmagic’s. In the grand scheme of things, it’s the Glazer’s team and Trevor’s done a great job of putting his stamp on a divisive line of narrative when there’s still 9 games left…. we ain’t even halfway thru the season!

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      • And I think next year’s 20+ million paycheck is guaranteed unless we cut him before March something. It’s also guaranteed if he gets injured. So I assume they have motivation to keep him on the bench.

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  45. Correction: that second sentence should have read “…their interception percentages fell, while Winston’s has risen.”

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  46. Primech54 well said. I was going to comment but you said what I was thinking and honestly Bucs have worn me out this year. I’m to the point I get where it’s just hard to get excited or care anymore.

    Fitz had two amazing games and for some reason O line played decent then they played like shit two games for Steelers and Bears and Fitz was horrible. We can’t run ball at all. To think he will come back now with this mess of a team and be consistent is just beyond stupid to me. Love to make playoffs and see that but I doubt seriously this team finishes over .500.

    So the sentiment of most and the article it’s time to move on and start the regime change, ditch Winston and start the coach, GM, and QB search? Great we can suck for several more years and have 50/50 chance of doing it again in a few more years.

    I hope they do find someone to guide the Glazers it certainly can’t hurt. Although not sure it matters really unless it’s “the guy”.

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  47. Fredster and Ron Potter, I agree. People don’t realize that chucking JW means entire rebuild. Cut/trade everybody. They want to win but want the route that leads most directly to an at least 5 year wait to even think about being in contention. What they really need to do is hire a President of Football Ops, and have him select a coach that can cater and design around his players strengths/weaknesses.

    I also would like to credit my man LakeLand on JBF with tallying up some fine numbers on JW’s passes per game to highlight how Koetter and his staff have absolutely not done that:
    “Jameis Winston averaged 33.4 passes per game as a rookie
    He averaged 35.4 passes per game in 2016
    He averaged 34 passes per game in 2017
    But he has thrown 148 passes in 2 full games, 2 halfs
    The Bucs has averaged 47.7 passes per game in their last 3 games
    I don’t understand the logic of Koetter
    Why have a guy throw 45-50 passes a game
    A guy coming of a 3 game suspension”

    It’s pretty much an unwritten rule that you don’t ask your young quarterback throw for more than 35 times per game if you want him to be efficient. They’re doing exactly the opposite, and then griping about turnovers. All this is very telling of how boneheaded the philosophy is. Not very wise to ask a young mistake prone quarterback to throw an ungodly amount of times per game, especially so when he’s rusty coming off of an impactful suspension.

    I just don’t believe in Dirk Koetter. Say what you want about Winston but when you watch that clip of Koetter and JW3 in his office on HardKnocks in hindsight, Dirk literally tells him to play like Aaron Rodgers and cites that “we’ve got the best team that we’ve had, by far, right now” and points out how they “have a good defense now.” Both points turned out to be incredibly delusional and he couldn’t have been more wrong. How dense can you be? Tells me everything I need to know. I can only imagine what this kid would look like if he had someone in the same vein of an Andy Reid, a Jim Harbaugh, a Doug Pedersen, a Mike McCarthy, etc. Someone who truly knows how to mold and develop young quarterbacks.

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