Monday, February 17, 2020

What should the Bucs do?

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  • #1091220
    tog
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    @nobody
    @calcuttarain
    @donkeyhunter
    @biggs3535
    @boidfink

    I thought it would be useful to have a discussion on what we think (or would do) next as the Bucs with (or without) Winston. But the Red Board is a pit of trolls, troglodytes, and alt-trolls, I thought it would be useful to have a frank, interesting conversation without wading through the muck. As I’ve undoubtedly missed posters who aren’t utter morons, please feel free to tag others.

    The question I want to pose is: what now should the Bucs do? What would you do?

    My position is that the Bucs should trade Winston at the end of the year no matter what. The only exception I can see is a practical one: if Winston wins the MVP or the Bucs go to the Super Bowl. I just don’t know how a team would move on from a player in that situation (although personally I’d still trade Winston).
    My argument is simple. Jameis is a a two-faced scumbag who can’t be trusted.

    Quite honestly, when this allegation first surfaced I did not think anything definitive would be proven. I expected Winston to get a one game slap on the wrist. That Winston blatantly lied, got Darby to lie, then lied by leaking that the suspension was “a failure to report” blew me away. That he then admitted guilt (technically “he doesn’t remember)… Sexually assaulting a woman (which this was) is bad. But on top of EVERYTHING ELSE plus the deceit? I honestly think that Winston has mental issues (not that I’m qualified to diagnose anyone). It’s just beyond me how someone with the spotlight and support system he has refuses to learn.

    Anyways, I’m rehashing what we all know.

    My main argument is very practical. It’s that you cannot trust Winston not to do something else given his long, long history. In fact, its far too easy even for him to be falsely accused now. Who are you going to believe, the woman or Winston? (Hint: It’s not Winston). The chance of him running afoul of the Personal Conduct Policy is far too high for me to be comfortable relying on Winston as a franchise face. If he does ANYTHING else he’s out for a year minimum. And then he’s done in the NFL. I mean what if that’s already happened and its not public yet? Or what if the Uber driver reveals new information/evidence, like happened to Ray Rice?

    What I would do is let him play out the year and then get whatever assets I can for him. Call it a “fresh start”. Let someone else handle that ticking time bomb. When strategysing in business (or war) you prepare for the worst case scenario. Well, Winston being suspended again isn’t even a worst case scenario at this point. The Bucs have to prepare for that reality. Because if Winston does get suspended you’re hooped for maybe 2 years.

    I’d also sign Kaepernick for two reasons. First, it can change the narrative. It’s a whole new story to tell, which is much easier to spin than (like Scott Reynolds did): “It was two years ago”. Second, it gives you a realistic option to win if Winston mentally collapses or is further suspended. Fitzpatrick is not a good QB (although all of us are pretending otherwise) while Kaepernick was a top 20 QB when he played – objectively. The risk you’re taking is how long he’s been away from the game, but you can ease him in and the plan is to not play him at all in 2018 (barring a Winston melt down or injury). Then, you have an option for QB in 2019 and you don’t HAVE to draft or sign a QB.

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    #1091269
    Nobody
    Participant

    I don’t have a ton of time, so let me get a few relevant thoughts up here and go from there later.

    1) My confidence in Jameis on the field is difficult for me to discern. Though I can say that it’s not great. His 2017 play was average and also very inconsistent.

    This offense is perfect for his skill set. He’s actually being set up to win repeatedly yet not winning despite it.

    He shows flashes of growth…then regression…rinse and repeat.

    3 years of play at the QB position in the modern NFL (where the rule set is engineered to create immediate QB success, unlike in the past) is a lot of time. He should either be better than average or at least consistent by this point.

    2) Off the field he is a complete Wild Card. The FHRitP and beebee gun episode while under the ever-watchful gaze and intense scrutiny of a rape investigation is difficult to fathom. Those two episodes would have scared me significantly if I was tasked with “the most important pick in Bucs franchise history.”

    But Licht gambled on those just being insane anomalies. A head butt personal foul, a pole to a CB generating a suspension for your WR, and this episode (the deceit/obfuscation – which was OBVIOUSLY GOING TO BE EXPOSED – being equally as bad, in terms of showing lack of discretion/reality adjudication) and they clearly were not anomalies.

    3) If Licht sells, and sells low, how would he not be fired immediately and how will he possibly ever get another GMing job after the 2016 draft debacle and then (if it came to it) screwing up “the most important pick in franchise history?”

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    #1091357
    Morgan R
    Participant

    I agree with your main argument, Winston is now on the equivalent of NFL parole, he so much as steps out of line once, and we lose him for a whole season, or forever. Asking this team to live with that over our heads indefinitely is unsustainable, particularly given how Winston seems unable to grasp the scrutiny he’ll be under for the rest of his life. The best we can hope for is a better backup and a transformative change in Winston’s behavior and moral code.

    Licht is the one who bears the most responsibility here, he gambled on Jameis, and so far, he bet wrong.

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    #1091774
    Runole
    Participant

    Winston won’t be cut or traded for anything so far.

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    #1091918
    DonkeyHunter
    Participant

    Just saw this @tog, but it’s a great post.

    Honestly, I think they just ride into the season as is. Fitz is your starter for the first 3 games. Most likely, even if he plays at his ceiling, we go 0-3 or 1-2.

    At that juncture, it would take Winston playing elite football on a CONSISTENT basis to lead us to the playoffs. Problem is, Winston and consistent don’t often collide together in the same sentence. As another poster mentioned, once we hit loss #7, bench him. Don’t risk injury that would put us on the hook for his guarantee next year.

    Odds are, the new regime won’t want to have anything to do with him. And, can you blame them? I mean, this guy is a walking lifetime suspension waiting to happen.

    This whole situation just sucks. Period. In hindsight, we were probably better served trading back that year.

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    #1092202
    tog
    Participant

    @Nobody

    To point 3, Licht is in a VERY precarious position. He’s walking a tightrope that is entirely dependent on Winston being a completely different person and player than he has been. He needs to take major steps forward in both areas.

    If I’m Licht, I’m not gambling on that. You can ride-and-die with Winston or you can have a backup plan in place. I’m letting Winston play out the season and unless he tanks as a player, THEN I’m moving him. The hope is that he has a strong season that gets me some assets with a team willing to gamble on a new start. Particularly if a team is desperate at QB and convinces themselves they’re comfortable with Winston. I think the story fans tell themselves – about Winston being young and stupid – some GM will convince himself of. So while you’re not selling Winston high, I think you could still get a premium pick for him (if has a good season).

    The reason I don’t ride with Winston is I don’t trust him as a person. If he’d come out and be honest, if he’d handled this very differently, than I might be willing to go forward. EVEN THOUGH he was supposed to be squeaky clean after the rape accusation. The fact that he repeatedly lied and tried to paint the VICTIM as a liar is gross. On top of which he’s been very, very careful to protect himself from litigation which I understand practically but again suggests he a serious ethical lapse. There’s no way I’m pegging my professional life to someone like that. I have a couple good friends that have done so and it was very much cost them. If you can’t recognise an obvious pattern with either a business partner or a spouse that’s on you.

    I think bringing in Kaep can then buy Licht some time. Even if Kaep rides the bench all year, there’s another potential future in place, he can go to ownership with a future plan. Think of it as the “Mike Vick Option” (if Vick never did anything wrong and was simply blackballed). It also gives the Bucs flexibility and another narrative to tell to the public.

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    #1092203
    tog
    Participant

    @donkeyhunter

    I agree that the Bucs will roll into the season as-is. I just think that’s a mistake (or has a high chance of being a mistake by season’s end).

    Don’t risk injury that would put us on the hook for his guarantee next year.

    I agree with this but obviously the current regime won’t do this. They are do-or-die with Winston. Talk about a wagon to get hitched too… The positive I see is that Winston can still be worth something in trade assets at years end.

    Odds are, the new regime won’t want to have anything to do with him. And, can you blame them? I mean, this guy is a walking lifetime suspension waiting to happen.

    This whole situation just sucks. Period. In hindsight, we were probably better served trading back that year.

    I think they should’ve gone Mariota. Now, with 100% hindsight yes, trade back. My (guess) is that Mariota looks better this year with a proper OC. Some of the stuff they’ve run over there has been stupid. Not that it’s a serious debate, the real QB talent was in the 2016 draft.

    The really frustrating part is this team has another do-over and is probably 2-3 years away from the playoffs again. Anything can happen (even this year) but that’s the realistic scenario. And that means more so many months of bad football to watch.

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    #1092375
    Nobody
    Participant

    @Tog

    Couple thoughts.

    1) I feel like selling low on Winston (lets say he is again average and inconsistent in his x number of games in 2018) is 100 % the death-knell of Licht. Do we agree on that?

    While I feel the above, I’m still probably 50/50 on him retaining his job even if he sells high (lets say Winston has an above average yet inconsistent season). I think high in that scenario is maybe a number 2 pick? Maybe? I just can’t possibly see someone giving up more. You’re giving up assets for (a) someone who is on the cusp of a lifetime ban, who (b) you aren’t sure you can trust to not put himself in situations where (a) materializes, while (c) his cap number is exploding (second contract) and (d) has put together a body of work that yields average/inconsistent/propensity for big time throws/propensity for big time gaffes. (d) is ABSOLUTELY not a formula for sustained success in the NFL at the QB position.

    I just feel like, if I’m the Glazers and I’ve witnessed Licht’s history of big-time mistakes (regardless if you feel he is on an upward trajectory in drafting), he is in the same boat as JW. I can’t trust him. If he basically admits (and selling high or low admits it) that “the most important draft pick in the history of the franchise” was a swing-and-a-miss…Donezo.

    I assume you disagree?

    2) They definitely have to have a backup plan regardless. Unfortunately, they’re going to have to sink assets (which we cannot afford) into the QB position for the future.

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    #1092488
    tog
    Participant

    @Nobody

    1) I agree with your premises, just not the conclusion.

    Given that all those things are true of Licht, I think he needs to have started charting a new path to have a chance at staying. I’m not sure how the Glazers keep Licht given all those correct premises you’ve listed. That is to say, if Licht’s 2019 plan is “status quo” isn’t he instantly fired?

    2) My concern is that the Bucs just end up in QB purgatory: not spending enough on the backup plan because you have Winston while also not solving the Winston problem. Thus not solving either problem.

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    #1092505
    Nobody
    Participant

    @Tog

    Given that all those things are true of Licht, I think he needs to have started charting a new path to have a chance at staying. I’m not sure how the Glazers keep Licht given all those correct premises you’ve listed. That is to say, if Licht’s 2019 plan is “status quo” isn’t he instantly fired?

    I think the answer to your question turns on:

    a) How much do the Glazers believe in Jameis (as a football player and as a reliable employee)?

    b) How do his x number of games turn out?

    If the answer to (a) is “plenty/enough” and the answer to (b) is “not just above average/good, but consistently so game-in, game-out”, then job security fears contract.

    If the answer to (a) is “shaky/shaky”, then he the answer to (b) probably has to be “elite and consistently so” for them to live with their insecurities regarding (a) without a backup plan in place.

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