Photo: Getty Images
Let me start off by saying I have the utmost respect for Monday Morning Quarterback author and SI.com senior writer Peter King, who has been a role model for me over my 20 years of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In fact, my weekly SR’s Fab 5 long-form column is slightly modeled after King’s weekly long-form MMQB column.
The last thing I want to do is get into an “over the Internet” argument with someone I deeply admire. However, I don’t feel as if King properly addressed the real issue at the heart of our disagreement.
In last week’s MMQB column, King stated that the Bucs’ draft board had Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston first, USC defensive tackle Leonard Williams second, Florida defensive end Dante Fowler third, Oregon QB Marcus Mariota fourth and Georgia running back Todd Gurley fifth. I firmly believe this is the list that King was either given by Bucs general manager Jason Licht or obtained from someone else in the organization.
In an exclusive interview with Licht I asked him about the list King published and he discussed it with me on the record for a story I wrote on PewterReport.com last week.
“I don’t know how [that got out],” Licht said.
The Bucs general manager didn’t recall discussing it or giving it to King during their interview last Friday at One Buccaneer Place.
“No, I don’t remember if I did to be honest with you,” Licht said.
“There is a very good chance that would have been the case,” Licht said (Ed. note for context – when asked if the Bucs would draft Mariota instead of Winston if another incident had occurred prior to draft day). “That board [in MMQB] – that wasn’t necessarily the order in that we were going to draft. That was not necessarily a current ranking. We did like Marcus. We did think Marcus would have a chance. We were comfortable with Marcus.”
That prompted King to write in this week’s MMQB column that PewterReport.com suggested his list was incorrect. The truth is that Licht suggested it, saying it was “not necessarily a current ranking.”
PewterReport.com was simply the messenger.
I think, in response to Pewter Report, which covers all things Buccaneers, saying that I had the list of top five men on the Tampa Bay draft board incorrect, I say: I absolutely stand by my list. That list, in order: Jameis Winston, Leonard Williams, Dante Fowler, Marcus Mariota, Todd Gurley. Pewter Report said Mariota was actually number two on the list. The truth: My list is correct. But the Bucs were going to take one of the two quarterbacks number one. It didn’t mean they had the quarterbacks 1-2 on their board. Teams don’t always take the best player available, and the Bucs had decided long ago to take a quarterback number one. But they had Williams and Fowler over Mariota on their big board.
I can buy into King’s premise that just because the Bucs may have had Mariota ranked below Williams and or Fowler doesn’t mean they were going to necessarily stick to their draft board and select a defensive lineman when the franchise was hell bent on taking a quarterback, which ended up being Winston.
However, King fails to address the fact that Licht himself, in a direct quote, said: “That board [in MMQB] – that wasn’t necessarily the order in that we were going to draft. That was not necessarily a current ranking.”
Nor does King mention in MMQB the fact that I even had an exclusive interview with Licht on the record, nor does he link the PewterReport.com story to give his readers the chance to read our story and draw their own conclusions.
The point Licht was making was that the list he gave King, or the list King somehow obtained, was not the Bucs’ final list. That’s Licht’s conclusion and those are Licht’s words.
Furthermore, the point of our story was not to point out that King’s list was not correct or outdated, but to illustrate the fact that the Bucs were going to draft Mariota – not a defensive player – if another pre-draft incident by Winston changed their thinking on the Seminoles’ signal caller. That was the key point of our story, and that is the key conclusion to draw from my interview with Licht.
That was a conclusion one simply couldn’t make just looking at the list King used in last week’s MMQB article.
King photo credit: Getty Images
Scott Reynolds is in his 23rd year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds enjoys giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: [email protected]
Jason licht’s words were clear! Never doubted what you reported! Even Peter King admits that PewterReport is the source for all things Bucs!
BTW, this falls into the category of “who cares?”. Remember this, never get into a pi$$ing contest when you are standing directly in front of a guy!
Here’s a hint. MMQB is not on my favorites bar, PewterReport is!
I agree completely with macabee. I would add to check which way the wind is blowing in the contest.
Well said mac and 76Buc….but, furthermore, does it matter if the wind is blowing directly at you because Tom Brady is standing behind Peter letting air out of footballs?
So agree with Macabee and others. PR and King; check your ego principles because most of us don’t care. It wasn’t important because we drafted Winston which was on top of the list anyway.
The Bucs did there research and that all I need. Both Qb will do great in ther first year. Lets see now what the other draft players do on the bucs and UFA go bucs
I understand King’s point to say that he stood by the rankings but as Scott points out, both are able to be correct without cancelling each other out. It’s kinda cool to see that Peter King acknowledged PR even if he didn’t link the article. Good job guys.
In the interest of consistency I say this independent of the whole Winston/Mariota aspect of the story: $*#& Peter King. I haven’t read MMQB since he predicted the Bucs would go 2-14 prior to the 2010 season we ended up going 10-6. His lack of fair coverage on all 32 NFL teams is as nauseating as his filling up space in his column with coffee, baseball and book references. The closest thing you can get to fair, up-to-the-minute coverage of all 32 NFL teams is ProFootballTalk. Any space filler in those articles are either short, clever jokes, spot on funny photos or legal insight related to the story. The only thing PFT does a lousy job of are Mock Drafts.
I like your spunk this early in the morning Pink. Peter king just throws random stuff out and hopes it sticks most of the time. I do like pro football talk as well.
The lady doth protest too much. Two pairs of panties in a bunch. Great reporting on your reporting King and Reynolds!
I read King’s Monday piece but don’t really like the guy. I’d take Florio any day over King…who reminds me of George Wendt, or the dad from “Teen Wolf”. NFL coverage from your doddering old grandpa. boo. hiss.
Not to beat up on the guy, but my opinion of King has always been that he talks too much and says too little. Every once in a while you can mine a tidbit in all that meandering rambling. It would have been nice if he had considered and researched what he was going to say before he banged out another long-winded paragraph to fill in the limitless amount of column inches he gets. Sorry he let you down.
Should of, would of, could of. Who cares we drafted Winston and that’s all that matters now.
What’s all the fuss about? It’s easy to comprehend. It’s probably accurate that the Bucs had Mariota ranked 4thbut recognizing that when a ranking of players is close, need becomes an important factor. Hence Jason Licht acknowledging the choice would have been Mariota. In reality you’re both right. “For Pete’s sake”, we here at Pewter Report respect the staff and its’ tireless effort to give us information to which we wouldn’t otherwise be privy. We really don’t care about the look down his nose at the Bucs information on MMQB, otherwise known as the Peter Report. Hmmmmm, sounds like a site with a far different type of chat room.
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