Oakland Raiders v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Former Bucs Jon Gruden is a big fan of both, Marcus Mariota and Jameis Winston, the top two quarterbacks in the 2015 NFL Draft.

Gruden, who might still be coaching the Bucs had he drafted and developed a young quarterback, seems enamored with both after being a guest on the Mike and Mike Morning Show on ESPN.

Gruden isn’t buying the system argument when it comes to Mariota.

“He’s not the offensive coordinator,” Gruden said. “It’s not his fault. What they do at Oregon is very unique. That type of football is on its way to the NFL. You’re seeing more and more no-huddle offenses. You see a lot of intermediate passes from 10 yards and in, which is a big part of Oregon.

“When you watch Philadelphia [which is coached by former Oregon coach Chip Kelly] play offense, you see the Oregon Ducks. The No. 1 offense in football the last two years is Philadelphia. So the system works. Mariota can play in that system. Somebody is going to see a (6-foot-4) quarterback with 4.5 speed. This guy is quick, he’s smart, he’s the most humble, hard-working guy maybe in this draft. I want him on my team. I’ll put my system in around him. I think personally Marcus Mariota can play in any system.”

Gruden also spoke highly of Winston as well.

“He’s a dynamic kid,” Gruden said. “You don’t go to Florida State and meet many people that don’t love being around Winston. He is a polarizing player for some. Some people can’t agree on what he is off the field. I’ve got a lot of confidence that he’s learned some valuable lessons and he knows he’s going to be in the spotlight for the rest of his career. It’s up to him to get it done.”

Gruden finished things up in classic Gruden fashion.

“If you don’t like Marcus Mariota, you don’t like human beings.”

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About the Author: Mark Cook

Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, the beach and family time.Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at mark@pewterreport.com
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macabee
macabee
6 years ago

Put both of them on the white board John, unrehearsed, and let them do their thing. Let us decide who’s ready now.

Can’t believe NFLN made all the hoopla over Winston and Mariucci and didn’t give Mariota the same opportunity to show his stuff.

Want to see it. Lovie said by the end of the evaluation, everybody will know who the best QB is. Well, let the games begin and Gruden would be must see TV!

tomort1
tomort1
6 years ago

“Gruden, who might still be coaching the Bucs had he drafted and developed a young quarterback” That’s ridiculous, the team mortgaged the future to get Gruden, and then we watched the team waste away–but we got out Super Bowl and it was worth it. It’s not just the Quarterback.

KINDERRT
KINDERRT
6 years ago

Loved Gruden as a coach. When Gruden and McKay had their falling out and they let McKay walk that was the beginning of the end. Not that I liked McKay but Gruden wanted Allen and that was a poor choice. Allen sucks at evaluating talent. Gruden was more or less the GM and it was down hill from there. I sure hope L&L are going to be a lot better then Allen & Gruden, only time will tell. A great start will be to draft Winston or Mariota.

GoldsonAges
GoldsonAges
6 years ago

How about this? If you don’t like Aaron Rodgers you are an IDIOT!!!

ufojoe
ufojoe
6 years ago

More Gruden on Mariota from the same interview…

“He has suddenness, quickness, he’s a quick thinker…and I’ve seen him throw the ball in tight windows.”

blackehart
blackehart
6 years ago

Jon Gruden was my favorite Bucs coach ever. He would’ve won more Super Bowls in Tampa if they’d replaced McKay with a real GM who was a Talent Evaluator and Capologist, and if the Glazers hadn’t misplaced their wallets for 8-9 years after buying Manchester United.

georgehicks
georgehicks
6 years ago

I’d agree with the coach. He could be a great qb also. but he will need more time. But he will be a qb that winston team will go up against in the future NFL seasons.GO BUCS

jongruden
jongruden
6 years ago

I still remember when we fired Gruden after we lost 4 straight games and finished 9-7 and we fired him, like we had some sort of expectation of winning the bowl every year or something. We had Raheem Morris, Schiano and Lovie since and non have come close to Gruden. The day we fired Gruden I knew we were the 1985 Bucs all over again and we would suffer many losing seasons there after. To this day it pains me that we left the best coach Tampa ever had go.

bucsmaniac
bucsmaniac
6 years ago

Loved Grudens fire and his offense but his hatred of rookies and building a team from the draft…was his downfall team got old went nowhere.

surferdudes
surferdudes
6 years ago

Can’t wait to see Grudens Q.B. camp this year. Trust me, if this was Gruden’s pick, it’d be Winston. Both men are that A type. Their fire together would be nuclear.

cbrady2k
cbrady2k
Reply to  surferdudes
6 years ago

Well since Jon and Jay run the same offense you can see how he’d waste the talent of a fast spread mobile QB.

cbrady2k
cbrady2k
6 years ago

Gruden likes every quarterback, thats why he collected so many in Tampa. Of course the fact he had so little success on offense in Tampa means his opinion isn’t all that valuable, but still Gruden loves everybody! Everybody! Except Sapp & Lynch & Keyshawn, they had to go since their egos were too big and blocking HIS spotlight.

SOXX
SOXX
6 years ago

Lock this Mariota up for a long time then we will have a lot of choices of coaches and free agents. They will want to come to Tampa, the greatest show on earth. It all starts with “MARIOTA”