As stated in a previous article, the offseason is often flooded with lists. We talk about the best this and that with rankings of just about anything.

But, this week ESPN’s Mike Jurecki threw a little flavor in his rankings of NFL things and actually came up with a really cool article called, “The 99 NFL players, coaches and themes that will define 2018.”

The 99 subjects are broken up into all kinds of categories. There’s veteran returning from injury, rising stars, free agent acquisitions who will make the biggest impact and plenty more.

The Buccaneers were represented three times throughout the 99 with the likes of Jameis Winston, Ronald Jones and Dirk Koetter.

Winston came in at No. 19 on the list (but I don’t think the numbering really matters, in this case) in a category titled: “young quarterbacks who could make a jump.”

“It was a disappointing season all around in Tampa Bay. Winston tried to play through injuries and ended up missing three games. But the way he played when he returned from injury — 317 yards per game, 9 touchdowns and 5 interceptions in five December games — offered hope that this could be the big breakout year the Buccaneers were hoping 2017 would be.”

Rookie running back Ronald Jones was next on the list at No. 30 and his category was: “rookies with the most fantasy potential.”

“Tampa Bay was 27th in the league in rushing last season — one spot behind the Giants and four behind the Seahawks. Jones might not project as an every-down back right away, and it’s on the coaching staff to find the right spots to deploy him, but he has explosive, big-play ability.”

Finally, the Buccaneers head coach, Dirk Koetter, came in at No. 74 under the group: “coaches on the hot seat.”

“Ownership tends to keep the seat warm in Tampa Bay even for successful coaches. Koetter is coming off a 5-11 season that dropped his two-year mark to 14-18. Another losing season would probably doom him.”

I would encourage you to take a look at the article yourself. It was a fun one to go through, even if you don’t agree with all the names and the categories they’re in. See which players and coaches are lumped into the same group as each of the three Bucs representatives and give us your thoughts.

Are these the three most important names that will come out of Tampa Bay as they play their part in defining the 2018 NFL season?

Shop the newest Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan gear at Fanatics!


  1. I think Koetter is the biggest wildcard. I think the talent is there. This should be a competitive team this year. Can Koetter take it from paper to turf?

    Please wait...
    • This hilites the situation for me as well. Everything now rests on the coaching results (including the “next step up” for Winston.). It is on the shoulders of the coaches.
      Go Bucs!!!!!

      Please wait...
    • Koetter is OK as coach he should not be calling plays though.

      Please wait...
  2. There are many wildcards. O line play and having a running game is the biggest concern to me on offense. Look better on paper but that means dick to me right now. Koetter and Winston aren’t the biggest wildcards on offense but both certainly need to improve. Second biggest concern is will the defense play better with all the new talent? If they don’t then Winston will have to press and take more chances. Again looks better on paper but that’s meaningless. We still are thin and questionable at safety and CB too. I like Davis but who knows if he or the other CB we took will pan out. Or if they do pan out what will the learning curve be? If they don’t play well now then it’s back to Hargreaves playing outside possibly instead of nickel and Smitty letting him play 12 yards off WR’s. Yeah that’s a shit picture and a possible one. Hoping that’s not the case.

    Please wait...
  3. Definitely don’t agree (which isn’t surprising as pretty much no analyst out there knows much about what they’re talking about when it comes to the Bucs because they haven’t really watched our games much less scrutinized them).

    Our wild cards are the same as they were last year:

    A) QB and Pass Rush

    B) Place-kicking

    C) Interior OL play (inside the Red Zone in particular)

    D) Back 4

    Please wait...
  4. I think it starts with the organization. They strive to be good – not championship. We addressed the defensive line with a new coach and players. We only partially addressed the offensive line – should have brought in a right guard or tackle in free agency. I also think we should have replaced the offensive line coach. We still have not addressed the special teams coach or return game. We still are not doing enough. I also agree with fredster that we could have done more with an experience cornerback on the team.

    Yet I will be shouting loudly at the games for the Buc’s hoping that I am wrong!

    Please wait...
  5. No one is mentioning the schedule as a wild card. We’ve got the toughest schedule in the league on paper, but a big reason for that is the rest of the division went 10+ wins and playoffs last season. You’d think there will be some regression to the mean this year (especially with the Panthers and Falcons), and if we take care of business in the games we should win and steal a game or two against the tougher non-divisional opponents, that might be the difference between, say, 8-8 and 10-6.

    Please wait...
    • Good points here as well!
      Go Bucs!!!!!

      Please wait...
  6. I think the wildcards this year are the play callers! On offense it’s about being creative with our formations and play calls and hiding our weaknesses. On defense it’s the play calling as well we have enough pieces to put a formidable defense on the field. The question is can we call the defensive plays that put us in to position to be better than last year!

    Please wait...
  7. I generally agree with those three. People can point to the pass rush or corners but as far as a per person ranking of importance Winston and Koetter will define the direction of the team more than McCoy and Hargreaves will.

    Koetter made some very questionable calls last year that submarined a few games and Winston has shown flashes of being a great game winning QB (as he did against the Saints) but hasn’t put it all together yet.

    No one should expect a top 10 defense this year meaning the onus will be on the offense to efficiently score points with a balanced run game. If you get all three people hitting their strides and the defense is able to be middle of the road in pass rush and coverage only then are you going to see a playoff push.

    Please wait...
  8. I think our offense is just fine, really. My picks, instead of RoJo and Jaboo, would be JPP and Carlton Davis, as I think the Buc defense is what’s going to really determine what happens with the Bucs.

    Please wait...
  9. Add JPP to that list of 4 and I think those could be amongst the most impactful to a turnaround. Maybe even Carlton Davis as well if he does end up being the real deal.

    Please wait...
  10. I miss both Mike Smith and JPP on Bucs’ defensive side. I mean if they both blow up I can easily see the team playing meaningful games in December

    Please wait...