SR’s Fab 5 is a collection of inside scoop, analysis and insight from yours truly, Pewter Report publisher and Bucs beat writer Scott Reynolds. Here are a few things that caught my attention this week at One Buc Place:

FAB 1. WINSTON’S COMPETITIVE, “TYPE A” PERSONALITY SOUGHT AFTER IN TAMPA BAY
The doubters would believe that Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston, the leading contender to become a Buccaneer and the first overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft, was scripted and well coached when he took over the podium on Friday at the NFL Scouting Combine and faced the media. Winston came across as confident, and perhaps a bit cocky – just like he was on the sidelines at Florida State.

In his first press conference since losing to Oregon in the College Football Playoffs, the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner and national champion was jovial and charismatic, just as he was in the huddle, on the practice fields and in the locker room with the Seminoles.

Winston wasn’t flustered by any question and was in complete control – like he was on every Saturday over the past two years during the college football season.

Winston won Friday’s press conference, and likely every interview he had with NFL teams in Indianapolis, just like he won 26 out of the 27 games he played in at Florida State. And Winston’s answers weren’t scripted, rehearsed or coached. They were genuine.

Those who know Winston, have observed him at Florida State and have done their research and homework on the talented quarterback know that what you is what you get with him.

“I was being real,” Winston said on NFL Network shortly after he finished his workout at the NFL Scouting Combine on Saturday. “I wasn’t putting on a show or painting anything. I didn’t even get coached up like I should have gotten coached up. I took responsibility for everything and was being real.”

Winston didn’t just win the press conference, the team interviews and the on-field performance with a perfect 16-of-16 passing day. He also won the post-practice interview when he and his primary competition to be the first overall pick, Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota, sat down on the NFL Network set and answered questions for about 20 minutes.

I’ll put it bluntly. With his body language and his words, Mariota came across to me as timid and even a bit meek in that interview. I saw Mariota defer to Winston several times when Brian Billick, Daniel Jeremiah and Charles Davis posed a question to either quarterback.

I saw Winston naturally overtake the spotlight with his commanding presence. He wasn’t interrupting Mariota and trying to hog the interview, but seemed to have the attitude of “well, if you aren’t going to step up and answer the question, then I will.”

There are two types of leadership in football – leading by example and vocal leadership. The soft-spoken Mariota definitely leads by example. But Winston has demonstrated that he is both a leader by example and a vocal leader.

I read Greg Bedard’s piece about how he thinks the quiet, soft-spoken Tampa Bay head coach, Lovie Smith, wants his mirror image at quarterback. After covering Smith for a year I can tell you that’s not true.

Despite his high character, faith-based persona, Smith isn’t afraid of taking on some players whose character could use some improving. In Chicago, he took a chance on Cedric Benson in the first round in 2005, and it didn’t work out, as Bedard explained. But he also traded for Brandon Marshall, who had a domestic abuse issue in his past, with the Bears and that move did work out, as he became a Pro Bowler for the Bears.

Last year, Smith wanted to sign controversial guard Richie Incognito and was flabbergasted by the local media’s instant negative reaction and uproar to the Bucs even considering the lineman with a checkered past. Ultimately, Incognito wasn’t signed – either due to general manager Jason Licht not being on board with the signing or the Glazers vetoing the move.

I can tell you that the notion that Smith wants nothing but Boy Scouts on the Buccaneers is not true. After signing a bunch of them last year in free agency, Tampa Bay was a team that was without an edge. The defense was soft. Even Pro Bowl defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, who has been criticized by some for himself being too nice, said it was soft.

The Bucs’ offense was lifeless, leaderless and was bullied by opposing defenses all season. Yes, Josh McCown was lauded for being a nice guy and a vocal leader, but vocal leadership quickly loses its luster when you can’t back up your talk on the field with solid play and you keep throwing interceptions.

The edgiest player on Tampa Bay’s offense last year was also its best – rookie wide receiver Mike Evans, who showed his toughness often by run blocking on the perimeter and outmuscling cornerbacks for jump balls. With a great rookie season under his belt, the team is looking for Evans to become more of a vocal leader in 2015 and spread his edginess across the offense.

But leadership on offense truly has to come from the quarterback position. Do you want to know why the Bucs didn’t draft a quarterback last year, passing on the likes of Johnny Manziel, Teddy Bridgewater, Derek Carr and Jimmy Garappolo? They didn’t pass the Bucs’ interview test.

Blake Bortles, Bridgewater, Carr and Garappolo weren’t assertive enough in the interviews for the Bucs’ brass. Manziel was full of confidence, but his sandlot playing style, love of the night life and alcohol problems, which were well known in the scouting community last year, disqualified him from being selected by Tampa Bay.

Let’s be clear. The Bucs aren’t looking for a quarterback. They had two quarterbacks last year in McCown and Mike Glennon.

Tampa Bay is looking for a true franchise quarterback, which is something the Bucs have never had in their 39 years of existence. Doug Williams, Vinny Testaverde and Trent Dilfer were all first-round picks, yet only played five years in Tampa. The team needs someone capable of leading a franchise – a true leader.

BCS National Championship - Florida State v AuburnThe Bucs are looking for a Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees-type player. That’s the type of franchise quarterback Smith and Licht are on the hunt for after passing over last year’s crop, which didn’t measure up to their standard.

When asked at the NFL Scouting Combine what are the traits he looks for in a quarterback, Licht rattled off: “Mental toughness, football intelligence and decision-making.”

Mariota has the second two, but I haven’t seen a lot of mental toughness from Oregon’s Heisman Trophy winner in games. Certainly not to the degree that Winston has shown over the past two years while leading Florida State to 26 straight wins and a national championship while being in the news for all the wrong reasons.

Winston had to compartmentalize the alleged rape investigation during his Seminoles career and was still able to go out and perform at an extremely high level on the field every Saturday. Licht alluded to that fact in a recent interview with Monday Morning Quarterback’s Peter King.

Yet in the biggest moment of his playing career, with Ohio State on top of Oregon by 15 points with nine minutes left in the fourth quarter of the national championship game, I got the sense that the game was over. Others in the NFL community agree with me. I just didn’t have the confidence in Mariota to rally his troops against the Buckeyes and prevail. Did you?

I didn’t see Mariota inspire his teammates on the sidelines or elevate their level of play with the national championship on the line. Ultimately it didn’t happen and Mariota got hurt as his shoulder was slammed to ground by Ohio State defensive end Joey Bosa.

Yet we saw that from Winston a year earlier in the Rose Bowl against Auburn, making several clutch throws in the fourth quarter to lead Florida State’s comeback, including the game-winning pass to Kelvin Benjamin with 13 seconds left.

Winston lives for those moments. He’s eager. Winston wants it. He’s not meek. He’s confident in his abilities and projects that swagger to his teammates in a positive way that inspires confidence throughout the squad in moments where it’s needed the most.

I believe that Winston has that “type A” personality that Licht and Smith are looking for. He checks the first two of Licht’s boxes – mental toughness and football I.Q. While he usually makes very good decisions on the football field – you don’t win 26 games in a row without doing that – Tampa Bay is using the next two months to fully investigate some of the poor decisions he’s made off the field.

Yet Winston isn’t shying away from his checkered past. He’s eager to address it with NFL teams. He’s eager to get it behind him. He’s eager to prove himself.

“This is what I live for,” Winston said. “As a quarterback, the position is the most criticized and scrutinized position in all sports. I accept that role. I am ready to show you what I’m capable of, ready to gain that trust a quarterback has to have from his team.”

I give Mariota credit for being honest during his press conference in Indianapolis. He admitted he’s far from a finished product and will have to learn to do things in the NFL that he didn’t do in college, such as call plays in the huddle and make checks and audibles at the line of scrimmage rather than look to the sidelines at Oregon’s play cards.

“It’s new, I haven’t done it since high school,” Mariota said.

And huddling and taking snaps under center.

“For [me] it’s going to be huddling, I haven’t huddled in a while,” Mariota said. “To everyone it seems like a little detail, but you know that is kind of a big thing. There are other things like the three-, five- and seven-step drop from under center.”

And learning to go through progressions to become a better pocket passer.

“It’s going to be tough, but for the most part it’s just learning from people like Philip [Rivers] and Kevin [O’Connell] and finding ways to continue to make good decisions with the football.”

Mariota believes he can do it – even if he has trouble projecting that in interviews with his quiet, monotone delivery.

“As an athlete and a competitor, any person will tell you that they are the best. I truly believe that myself,” Mariota said. “Any player will stand in front of you and tell you they are confident in their abilities. I’m no different. I feel that what I’ve done at the University of Oregon and what I’ve learned has prepared me for this level.

“For me, I don’t really compare myself to others. I really just try to make myself the best player that I can be. You really limit yourself if you compare yourself to others.”

The outspoken Winston is the opposite. He doesn’t mind comparisons – just don’t compare him to Mariota. Compare him to some of the all-time greats because that’s where he seems himself in the NFL.

“This is no competition between just me and Mariota, because one thing about me, I plan on winning the Super Bowl next year so it’s going to be me versus Peyton Manning and Jameis versus Tom Brady,” Winston said. “I want to be viewed like that.”

Do you see the difference? Because that’s the main difference between these two supremely talented quarterbacks – other than the fact that Winston is a better pocket passer and Mariota is a better athlete. I do see the difference and when the Bucs sit down with both quarterbacks for separate interviews they will see the difference, too.

If Winston’s character is fully vetted and checks out, his mental toughness, his vocal leadership, his fire and desire, and his confidence will make him Tampa Bay’s quarterback.

At every level from Pop Warner to the NFL, football is a game played with emotion. Teams that come out flat typically lose because they “weren’t ready to play,” as head coaches often say in post-game press conferences.

It seemed like at Florida State Winston made sure his Seminoles were always ready to play. And even when they weren’t, Winston rallied the troops at halftime. Twenty-six straight wins was evidence of that.

In high school, Mariota’s coach was trying to develop the quarterback’s vocal leadership abilities and threatened to have him run five 110-yard wind sprints unless he yelled at someone during practice. In the interview below, which I encourage you to watch, Mariota admits that instead of attempting to do that, he opted to run.

At Oregon, the coaches had to coax Mariota to become more vocal. While he acknowledges that he has made progress in that area, he still has a ways to go because that’s not natural for him.

This interview of Mariota is off-putting to me. I don’t want a quarterback that is afraid to get in a teammate’s face if necessary. All eyes are on that position and I don’t want vanilla milquetoast. I don’t think the Bucs do, either.

Now if Mariota is Tampa Bay’s pick, I will support the Bucs’ decision wholeheartedly and will understand that there was something in Winston’s background check that didn’t pass muster – just like I had no problem with Tampa Bay drafting Gerald McCoy even though I though Ndamukong Suh was the better defensive tackle prospect in the 2010 NFL Draft.

I can’t and won’t deny Mariota’s skills, even though I think it will take some time for him to develop into an NFL quarterback because of the system he played in at Oregon and

For those Bucs fans who abhorred Josh Freeman’s docile, non-fiery demeanor and wanted a quarterback full of vigor and swagger like Brett Favre and Tom Brady, Mariota is not your guy. And for that reason, he may not be Tampa Bay’s first-round pick.

Mariota and Winston have different abilities on the field, but the talent level is ultra-close. That’s why both quarterbacks are being considered by Tampa Bay with the first overall draft pick. But it is Winston’s “eye of the tiger” demeanor that has him in the leadership position on the Bucs’ board two months prior to the draft.

FAB 2. WINSTON’S NFL FUTURE HAS BEEN A LONG TIME COMING
Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht’s carrion call at the NFL Scouting Combine was to be wary of “late risers,” which are players that didn’t necessarily stand out on tape with the football pads on, but excel in the underwear Olympics in Indianapolis and surprise with their athleticism.

The fact that Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston, the leading prospect to be selected first overall by Tampa Bay in the 2015 NFL Draft, had a masterful performance at the Combine throwing the ball and impressing both the media and NFL teams doesn’t qualify him as a late riser. In fact, Winston is the furthest thing from being a late riser.

Winston has been destined for stardom for years now. He was named the Under Armour All-American Game MVP after completing 7-of-8 passes for 178 yards and two touchdowns, including a 75-yarder to Amari Cooper. Winston was a five-star recruit by Scout.com and the top-rated QB by Rivals, Scout and ESPN in 2011.

He was also named the MVP of the Elite 11 QB challenge, which was hosted by former Bucs quarterback and current ESPN NFL analyst Trent Dilfer in 2011. Prior to playing a single down at Florida State in 2013, Dilfer forecasted Winston as the No. 1 overall pick.

“I know what’s coming,” Dilfer said. “I know the kid at Florida State, Jameis Winston, will be an absolute rock star.

“He’ll be the first pick of the draft if the first pick goes to a team that wants to run the pistol, zone-read, have a passer. He’s that kind of kid.”

Warchant.com, the top Florida State news website, accurately foretold Winston’s greatness before it even happened in this article in 2013.

“I’ve never seen anything like that guy. I’m not even talking about his talent,” former Hueytown High coach Matt Scott told Warchant.com. “There’s a lot of people that can throw the ball. What people don’t understand is the difference with him. His football IQ is through the roof. If they had some kind of scientific study for it they’d have to do a special on CNN. It’s unbelievable.”

The same article featured quotes from Winston’s father, Antonor, as well as a photograph of hand-written letter from Winston when he was attending Hueytown Middle School. Winston took it upon himself to write down seven traits for being a great QB:

1. Leadership
2. Dedication
3. Desire
4. Student
5. Mental Toughness
6. Character
7. Confident

That letter was part of a QB notebook Winston compiled on his own at age 13. The article on Warchant.com also highlighted the fact that Winston graduated high school with a 4.0 average and turned down Stanford and Alabama to go to Florida State.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the Warchant.com article was from Winston’s high school coach, who talked about his volatility. Seminoles fans and Winston observers have seen the talented quarterback have a few heated exchanges with Florida State head coach and playcaller Jimbo Fisher, including one in the Rose Bowl playoff game against Oregon where Fisher told Winston to cool it or he would bench him.

“There are times when that fire burns out of control,” Scott said. “What they don’t understand is, they Oklahoma State v Florida Statewant him to be that guy, but they don’t realize that mentality is what makes him great. They want him to be that (nice) guy but they don’t realize you almost don’t have one without the other.”

But as much as that competitive fire burns inside Winston, the 21-year old quarterback never gets down. He always has a smile on his face and is the most positive person on the team, according to offensive linemen Tre Jackson and Bobby Hart, the Seminoles offensive linemen that PewterReport.com has interviewed this offseason.

Winston’s ever-present smile and positive personality will fit in nicely with defensive tackle Gerald McCoy, the Bucs’ team leader, and head coach Lovie Smith. Winston’s supreme confidence would have fit in nicely next to the U.S. hockey team in 1980, poolside next to quarterback Joe Namath in 1969 or on the battlefield next to David as he took on Goliath – although Winston would have likely preferred to use a BB gun rather than a slingshot.

While Winston’s swagger and fiery demeanor can be off-putting at times, they serve him well on the gridiron – and on the scoreboard.

“You can ask anyone who played on the Hueytown football team that Jameis was a hard worker and the things that he did on the field, he might get a 15-yard penalty but on the next drive he’s going to throw an 80-yard touchdown,” Scott said. “A lot of people just didn’t get that about him. I’ve seen him every day. That’s just Jameis. He’s going to work hard and he’s going to do what he wants to do. But you can guarantee he gets the W.”

FAB 3. FREE AGENCY FORECASTING FOR THE BUCS IS TOUGH TO DO
If you think doing a seven-round Bucs mock draft is difficult, forecasting free agency is even more challenging. Typically, we at PewterReport.com pump the brakes on free agent signing speculation because when free agency officially opens on March 10, a lot of players could wind up re-signing with their clubs or be hit with the franchise tag.

We can tell you which players will likely be available in what rounds in the 2015 NFL Draft. We have a much more difficult time telling you what free agents will actually hit the market. In my 20 years of covering the Bucs I’ve seen players I thought Tampa Bay would target in free agency get re-signed at the last minute. It happens every year.

I’ve championed the possible pursuit of defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh, who would be the top free agent prize if he were to hit the open market. But that’s a big if. Detroit can’t use the franchise tag on Suh, but has every intention on trying to re-sign him before his agent can speak to other teams on March 7.

PewterReport.com believes that Tampa Bay will part ways with overpaid free safety Dashon Goldson, and New England’s Pro Bowl safety Devin McCourty would make a great replacement. But will McCourty become a free agent or will he receive the franchise tag?

There is talk that New Orleans may have to part ways with Pro Bowl guard Jahri Evans if it can’t restructure his salary so that the Saints can get under the salary cap that is projected to be between $140-$143 million, or that fellow guard Ben Grubbs may get released instead. Either player would help the Buccaneers, and guard may be the team’s weakest position in terms of talent and experience on the roster. But will Evans or Grubbs even make it to free agency?

Philadelphia released 32-year old guard Todd Heremanns on Thursday, and that could be a veteran stop-gap addition for Tampa Bay. Bucs general manager Jason Licht was in Philadelphia at the time Heremanns was drafted, and connecting the dots with him going to Tampa Bay is a little easier to do right now than penciling in either Evans or Grubbs in red and pewter.

Tampa Bay Bucaneers v New England PatriotsIn fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if Tampa Bay signed New England guard-center Dan Connolly, whom Licht knows from his days with the Patriots. The 33-year old Connolly still has another year or two left in the tank and could be the bridge the Bucs need for a year or two until a player like Kadeem Edwards or a rookie the team drafts this year can develop into a starter. Connolly, who would be a welcome addition by former Patriots guard Logan Mankins, could start at right guard and also gives the team a veteran backup at center in case something were to happen to Evan Dietrich-Smith.

Quite a few Bucs fans like my most recent PewterReport.com 2015 Bucs’ 7-Round Mock Draft, but would rather see a first- or second-round pick used on a rookie offensive lineman, and if a player like Florida State’s Cameron Erving slips into the second round, that could very well be the pick. But given the fact that the Bucs would need their second-round pick – and possibly their third-rounder – to step in and start as a rookie, it might not be ideal to draft an offensive lineman in the second round and have a rookie quarterback – likely Florida State’s Jameis Winston – play behind him.

Instead, I think the Bucs will fortify their offensive line in free agency again this year and spend another draft pick or two in the middle or late rounds to add more depth at guard and/or tackle. Even highly touted rookie offensive linemen struggle against NFL defensive linemen. CBSSports.com’s Pat Kirwan revealed some interesting statistics about the top offensive tackle prospects from the 2013 NFL Draft:

“Look no further than the 2013 first round when Eric Fisher went No. 1, Luke Joeckel No. 2 and Lane Johnson No. 4. In two seasons, Fisher has given up 17 sacks in 30 games, Joeckel 12 in 21 and Johnson 11 in 28. Forty sacks by three top tackles in the first two pro seasons is an indication of just how hard the transition can be for tackles.”

Winston or Oregon’s Marcus Mariota would likely be better served throwing behind a veteran offensive line in Tampa Bay – albeit a better veteran offensive line than the Bucs trotted out last year when Josh McCown and Mike Glennon were sacked a collective 52 times.

I’ll have more on what the Bucs might do in free agency in next Friday’s SR’s Fab 5 column when which players might actually hit the market becomes a bit clearer, but I wonder if Eagles defensive end Trent Cole would be a nice stop-gap pass rusher to replace Michael Johnson. The 32-year old Cole will likely be released by Philadelphia in a cap-related move and had 6.5 sacks and three forced fumbles in his ninth season with the Eagles in 2014.

FAB 4. McDONALD GOT WRAPPED UP IN HIS CRITICISM OF NICKERSON
To celebrate my 20 years of covering the Buccaneers I’m going to share with you some of the behind-the-scenes encounters I’ve had over the last two decades. These stories will appear in the first 20 SR’s Fab 5 columns of 2015, which encompasses much of the offseason.

The year was 1999 and I was interviewing rookie wide receiver Darnell McDonald, the Bucs’ seventh-round pick, for a feature in Buccaneer Magazine. As a Kansas State alum I have to admit that I was excited that Tampa Bay had drafted McDonald. After all, he caught the game-winning touchdown pass to beat Nebraska, which was something K-State hadn’t done since 1969. That victory propelled K-State to the top of the Coaches Poll in 1998.Darnell McDonald #80

I remember sitting outside the back porch area at the University of Tampa after a morning training camp practice talking to McDonald, who was one of the cockiest NFL players I’ve ever met. I asked him how familiar he was with the Buccaneers before he was drafted by Tampa Bay and he said he had heard of Hardy Nickerson, Warren Sapp and Derrick Brooks and Warrick Dunn, but that was about it.

Unprompted, McDonald said that he thought Nickerson would be tougher than he was. I was kind of shocked to hear that from the rookie wide receiver because I thought Nickerson was the baddest Buccaneer on the team, and was as tough as they come. Then he laughed and said that Nickerson looked kind of soft with his jheri curl. I was stunned. All of this was on the record and I had several different thoughts running through my head at the time.

Do I edit the interview and leave the salacious quotes about Nickerson out to save McDonald from an unfriendly confrontation with “El Dragon?” I couldn’t leave a fellow K-Stater out to dry like that, could I?

Of course I wouldn’t be doing my job if I let any bias interfere with my work. Besides, I didn’t like what McDonald said about the Pro Bowl linebacker and the Bucs’ resident badass. McDonald said what he said – stupid or not – on the record and he had to be a man and own his own words. So I published the interview in Buccaneer Magazine that week.

The publication was circulated to all the players each Monday after it was published during the open locker room session, and was widely read by the whole team. The players have the day off on Tuesdays, so when I returned to the Bucs locker room on Wednesday I was shocked at what I saw.

There were clips of McDonald’s interview in Buccaneer Magazine – the part where he was criticizing Nickerson – cut out and taped all around the locker room for everyone to see. And right above those clippings were various Polaroid pictures of Nickerson standing next to McDonald with a big grin on Hardware’s face and Nickerson’s arm wrapped around the rookie’s shoulders.

Of course McDonald was nearly taped from mouth to toe. Nickerson had obviously confronted McDonald over his not-so-nice comments about not being tough and having a jheri curl and decided to forcefully mummify the rookie in trainer’s tape.

I laughed out loud in disbelief when I saw the pics in the locker room, but I started to feel bad, too. I also grew a little bit worried that McDonald would find me and seek some vengeance on me for publishing those quotes. Little did I know but McDonald would be arrested for a road rage incident the following summer and be released by the Buccaneers.

Moments later, I happened to exchange a glance with McDonald from across the locker room. I decided to go over to his locker and get any confrontation with the former Wildcats star over with.

Instead of feeling McDonald’s wrath, he looked at me, laughed a bit, humbly shook his head and said, “I guess Hardy is a little tougher than I thought!”

I laughed and said, “Hey, Darnell. I felt bad publishing your quotes about Hardy … but you said it.”

“Yeah, obviously he didn’t appreciate that too much,” McDonald said. “I’ve definitely learned my lesson. I’m going to keep my mouth shut around here.”

Otherwise Nickerson would tape it shut again.

FAB 5. SR’s BUC SHOTS
• Speaking of reporting, it will be fascinating to see what transpires from a media perspective if the Bucs indeed draft Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston. After all, the reporter who started the investigation of Winston is Matt Baker of the Tampa Bay Times, who helps Rick Stroud and Greg Auman with the Times’ Bucs coverage. Baker has written an emotional piece on the threats he has received from some angry Seminoles fans since breaking the news on Winston.

If he is drafted by the Bucs, would Winston ever want to speak with Baker, or will he let bygones be bygones? Would Winston boycott talking to the Tampa Bay Times altogether if Baker is still covering the team? For all of the distress Baker has received from filing the story, Winston’s name and reputation have been crucified in the public square. Would the Times be better off reassigning Baker to cover another sport?

The Tampa-based Baker did cover Florida State games last year for the Times, but was not a daily beat writer up in Tallahassee like he is for the local Buccaneers. It will be interesting to see how all of this unfolds.

• Just a thought, but what are the chances that the NFL heads to Tampa Bay with Hard Knocks? Knowing Lovie Smith, he certainly wouldn’t volunteer the Buccaneers for the distractions that come with having HBO cameras all over One Buccaneer Place for the month of August.

Yet if an NFL team doesn’t volunteer for the annual HBO series the league gets to pick one. And with superstar quarterback James Winston likely ending up in Tampa Bay and the Buccaneers instantly becoming a team with the national spotlight on it as a result, the Pewter Pirates would likely be the NFL’s top choice.

For the record, a team has volunteered to host Hard Knocks every year with the Atlanta Falcons as the subject last year.

• One thing is for certain, drafting Florida State QB Jameis Winston will likely generate more primetime games in 2015 for Tampa Bay. Last year, the Bucs only had one primetime game on national television, and that was a 56-14 loss at Atlanta on Thursday Night Football.

Aside from moving the needle at the Bucs’ ticket office, drafting Winston would also make Tampa Bay relevant on the national landscape again. Winston would generate high ratings and there could be a few primetime games for the Bucs in 2015 as a result.

• Bucs general manager Jason Licht shot down speculation that the hiring of offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, who has a relationship with Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich, would lead to getting additional insight that would lead the Bucs to select Ducks quarterback Marcus Mariota.

“It’s helpful, but it absolutely wasn’t the reason we hired Dirk Koetter,” Licht said. “We also have a lot of coaches that have long-standing relationships with other players in the draft, too. We felt he was the best offensive coordinator – not just at the time, but one of the better ones in the league. We’re excited about him. That was our biggest offseason acquisition.”

• Despite coming off a 2-14 season, Tampa Bay head coach Lovie Smith is full of optimism that the Bucs will have success luring players in free agency.

“First off, how long have you lived here? A long time, right? You love it here? People love bringing their family down here. When they start looking inside of our program though, I think they’re going to like what they see. No matter what position or what side of the ball, I think they’re going to like the guys we have in place.

“The foundation that we talked about, it’s just not going to be me. It’ll be the Gerald McCoys and Lavonte Davids. We’re all going to be recruiting guys to come down here and I think they’re going to like what they see. They’re going to like the foundation, again, they’re going to like how close we’ve been and they’re going to assume that we just need a little bit more, which they can give us. For the same reason we’re all here and I’m talking about our organization, I think guys in free agency will look at it the same way.”

• The hiring of former Jacksonville defensive end Paul Spicer appears to be a good one. Spicer replaces Mike Phair, who coached the Bucs’ defensive ends last year, and is reunited with Tampa Bay defensive line coach Joe Cullen. Spicer served as Cullen’s assistant for two years in Jacksonville from 2012-13. Having a former NFL player like Spicer aboard can only help the Bucs’ edge rushers, who were led by Jacquies Smith’s 6.5 sacks last year.

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Munoz offers free consultations, so you have absolutely nothing to lose. Conveniently located across the street from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, please give Munoz a call today at 1-888-856-1688 and tell him that PewterReport.com referred you, or visit Munoz and Co. online at tax-resolution-tampa.fl-biz.com. You will be glad you did.

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Scott Reynolds is in his 24th 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 spent six years giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his son's Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: [email protected]

80 COMMENTS

  1. Scott, I was all for the Bucs drafting Mariota over Winston until your Fab 5 column of January 9. I appreciate your columns on Winston and am convinced that Winston is the guy. I urge all PR readers to review that column.Go Bucs!!!!!

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    • Boy pr is going to get crucified for this article by the mariota contingent. Problem is everything written above is very true. I don’t want a mute as our qb, mariotta has zero outside fire and you need that from your qb. I like his skill set, if he just had Jameis’ alpha personality he’d be a lock. But as listed above in the championship game when Oregon was getting throttled, he was sitting by himself in the sudelines with his helmet on. I don’t want that from our qb.
      When fsu was getting beat down from Oregon it was just the opposite done winston. Gathering teammates telling them to finish strong and consoling the freshman. That’s a leader. Just my opinion, but I’m sure I’ll get slammed somewhere on here for it. It’s the nature of a great debate.

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      • Guess you wouldn’t have drafted Joe Montana either

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        • Not sure exactly what you mean there, but a totally different era and situation, so the comparison you’re looking for doesn’t exist.

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  2. Good read as usual Scott. Look forward to Friday’s for the Fab 5. I believe Winston to be a Franchise changing QB. I can only hope they select him on draft day.

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  3. For those interested their is a great video about Winston on battleredblog.com. It analyzes some of Winstons throws in the Rose Bowl.

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    • http://www.battleredblog.com/2015/2/26/8114767/the-film-room-can-jameis-winston-turn-tampa-into-a-superpower

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    • Just watched it. Was a great breakdown.

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      • Wow that was a hell of a breakdown there. It’s funny how the nuances of football as an observer you just don’t see.

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        • Anyone who is a mariotta fan needs to watch his breakdown. It speaks volumes about all of my fears when it comes to him. I know this is a one game sample but Christ Oregon ram the same play 40% of the time. A play with ZERO reads.

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  4. Winston will either be the first pick this year, or we’ll all be sitting around the PR campfire talking about who the Bucs will be picking with their top-5 draft pick in 2016. e

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  5. I had pointed out my concerns while watch MM at the combine and how he seemed disconnected and in his head most of the time.I was/am weary of having a quite/reserved QB for a team that is in much need of an offensive identity and some swagger.Evans brought some of that with him last year,but one guy is not enough.
    I was originally 100% in the MM bandwagon but after attending the Rose Bowl I jumped ship.Even with a loss,JW had taken my vote from MM and ive never looked back.
    Choosing winston is sure to make a percentage of the fan base very unhappy as they feel Marcus is the type of guy we need in Tampa and not the risky character Winston is viewed by some to be…But wait until Winston is a Buc and brings his confidence to the field…He and Evans are gonna be regulars on the highlight reels~I guarantee you…Our whitebread offense hasnt and doesnt scare anyone.Once other teams have broken our Ds spirit,we just get murdered.This could be the beginning of the end of that s##t in Tampa…
    I surely hope our team has the peaches to draft Winston in 62 days…

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    • I 100% agree cremdonado. I posted on the Red Board earlier this week that Evans will make either quarterback better. Winston-Evans will be a lot fun. It will also be terrifying to Ryan, McDermott, and Smith!

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  6. Fab 1 and 2 are a summary of what so many are getting wrong in analyzing Winston. Well, that and they see his arrogance/entitlement as confidence. Here is what everyone is getting wrong. When Winston faced Mariota he lost. He had all the same “Type A” personality that day as he always has, Mariota was “meek” and Mariota kicked his @$$. You guys are holding Winston’s personality in such high esteem when it has absolutely nothing to do with scoring more points than the other team, which Mariota proved in the Rose Bowl. If Jameis and FSU had been playing Ohio State for the championship FSU very well may have been down by 35 with 9 minutes left in the 4th qtr because Winston couldn’t make it a close game against Oregon. Whether you “felt” he would have come back while facing Ohio State wouldn’t have mattered, because he wouldn’t have. By referencing Winston’s personality you are making this a practice of idealism when football is a practice of pragmatism. If this were politics I would want Jameis leading my party because he doesn’t actually have to do anything while campaigning, just talk. Football isn’t measured in personality, it’s measured in a quantifiable units called points which is why E. Manning has two Super Bowl rings and Flacco has one. It doesn’t matter how the QB makes you feel, what matters is who scores the most points in 60 minutes and Mariota has scored at least double the points Winston has. You might not like Mariota’s personality but the objective is to win NFL games, not elections and Mariota’s game translates to scoring more points than Jameis and that’s not even including the negative headlines Jameis will create.

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    • Pink, Winston didn’t face Mariota; FSU face Oregon. The QB is just a piece of the puzzle. Mariota is facing a long transition to the NFL game. He needs to be on a team where he can learn from the bench for a while like Rogers did… But, the Bucs don’t have the luxury of that “bridge” QB to get Mariota there. If he is thrown into the fire early, he will be eaten alive and run out of Tampa on a rail. Winston has a much better chance of being able to start on day 1. Will he be amazing? Probably not. But, he has a much smaller learning curve to deal with. I hope that Mariota is successful. He seems like a great guy. He will need the right situation to succeed and I just don’t think Tampa is the place. e

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      • E, I think Winston could do just as well from learning on the bench as Mariota. The last thing a guy who walks such a fine line between confidence and arrogance needs is to be picked 1st overall and handed a franchise. It’s going to take Winston just as long (if not longer) to mature and learn how to handle losing (which he will as all QB’s do) as it will take Mariota to run an offense from under center. After seeing Winston in the Oregon game on the sidelines I don’t think he’ll handle losing any better than Cam Newton did since they were both talented, immature and used to winning. That will have more of a negative impact on the team than his personality will have a positive impact.

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        • Pink, Just out of curiosity… Who are some of the QBs that you have admired over the years in the NFL? e

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          • To make sure I answer your question since I’m not sure which you mean I’ll answer which ones I have admired over the years and which ones I fear the Bucs having to face in 2015 and beyond since they aren’t necessarily the same QB’s. Over the years I have admired (in no particular order) P. Manning, A. Rodgers, R. Wilson, D. Brees and C. Newton. The QB’s I fear facing in 2015 and beyond are A. Rodgers, R. Wilson, C. Newton, C. Kaepernick, J. Flacco and if we don’t pick him, Mariota. Notice I omitted Luck and Winston and it’s not because they aren’t talented but the both turn the ball over a lot and any team that has a QB that turns the ball over a lot is beatable any given Sunday. That’s why I never feared Farve and I don’t fear Brees.

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          • Interesting that all of them are current players? I’m assuming you’d throw Brady or Young in there as well? All of the listed (I think below my post because there was no reply under your comment) QB are excellent pocket passers with the exception of Kaepernick… and I think that he’s probably the closest comparison to Mariota? I’ve never feared Vick, Kaepernick, or any QB that can’t stand and deliver in the pocket. Historically, I’d have to add Montana, Staubach, Marino, Kelly, Grogan for toughness, Kosar for smarts, etc… I just don’t recall any of these players on both lists learning to be a pocket passer? …maybe Newton? e

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    • Pinstob, I concur with your sentiment. I’ve never seen a QB with this many character questions be the first overall pick, and/or even have a successful NFL career. The track record of QBs with character/off-field questions coming out of college and being successful is not that great. However, Winston will be a very interesting test case.

      That said, I can’t see Lovie Smith and Jason Licht, both of whom place a premium on character, drafting a QB who has a litany of off-field problems.

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      • Peyton Manning had concerns in college and look how well he has done…

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        • Flyboy, what other off-the field concerns did Manning have besides the sexual assault? Did he steal? Did he cause damage with BB guns? Did he scream out an obscenity while being investigated for a sexual assault? Did he allegedly make a marijuana signal with his hand before a bowl game? Did he steal soda from a Burger King? Did he get kicked out of practice before a major bowl game? Did he get into arguments with his coaches on the sideline?

          You’re attempt at comparing Winston to Manning is not a good one nor is it accurate.

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          • *Your

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          • Well Manning also didn’t have the luxury of living in the day and age of instant media.Never know what might have been done in those days.

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          • The question at hand was the negativity Jameis would cause coming out of college with all the issues he was involved in. I’m not saying he was a saint but labeling him a problem before he even had a chance to even prove if he has learned from those mistakes is being ignorant. I compared him to Peyton for simple fact that there was some issues and Peyton is now the poster-boy for character. I could name other NFL stars that had baggage and yet they prove to be stellar performers on and off the field. Had there been a social media frenzy in Peyton’s college days, what could have come out that? Peyton and Jameis both had sexual allegations. Sure Jameis shot a BB gun. I’m quite sure that Peyton and other people, you included, have shouted obscenities. As for the arguments on the sidelines, tell me what QB doesn’t have a fire inside to get in peoples faces to motivate them?

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          • The “question at hand” is your question, not what I was referring to in my statement.

            “…labeling him a problem before he even had a chance to even prove if he has learned from those mistakes is being ignorant.” What do you mean? Are you saying he wasn’t afforded that chance? Because he was and he continued to make poor judgments. It’s called a pattern of behavior. How many more chances does he need? It’s ignorant to believe that he wasn’t afforded a chance.

            Yes you could name other players, but you’re ignoring the topic. Find a 1st overall QB or QB in the first round that was successful with similar/extensive off-the-field issues. Then we can have a productive conversation.

            “I’m quite sure that Peyton and other people, you included, have shouted obscenities.” What’s your point? Did Peyton do it while being investigated for rape? This is a terrible argument.

            “As for the arguments on the sidelines, tell me what QB doesn’t have a fire inside to get in peoples faces to motivate them?” Wait, does a QB need to motivate his OC and HC? If so, the team is in real trouble.

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    • See pink I’ll give you the character stuff, but comparing the rose bolw game is a fruitless argument. A. WInston doesn’t play defense and FSU’s defense was TERRIBLE. They were out of place on just about every throw. Winston can’t help the three fumbles by his teammates or the interception that bounced right off of his receivers hands. He still threw for almost 400 yards and a touchdown thrown.
      But the point of the article that rings true is that while all of that is happening, WInston is urging his teammates on and reassuring the freshman mistakes. And let’s face it, that game in the firts half, Mariotta was terrible. Overthrew a couple of wide open guys and should have had two picks had our db not let the ball hit him right in the hands. My point is Oregon won the game handily, but Maiotta did not beat Jameis.

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      • What does “instant media” have to do with it? Are you insinuating that teams didn’t have the same capabilities of doing thorough background investigations? That’s a naive argument.

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        • Yeah I am actually. If you think the same tmz instant media was around when manning was in school you are just being naive. Point is that we have no idea some of the things these kids did back in the day as social media has put players under a much larger microscope. I’m not insinuating talent evaluation, which I aslo guarantee you has vastly improved since then. So yeah my argument is actually prett valid.

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          • I never said “instant” media was around to the extent it is today, so I’m not sure where you’re getting that argument.

            In any case, your argument is fairly amusing. Your argument is that NFL teams rely on social media for information on players that they would unable to find otherwise. That’s a very naive statement considering Bill Polian has stated many times he did an extensive background check on both Ryan Leaf and Peyton Manning, and in the end decided to go with Manning. By the way, Manning’s incident at the time (which was labeled as mooning) was widely known about. Your “instant” media argument argument is irrelevant when it comes to teams, because teams don’t rely on the media to inform them of a guy’s character background.

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  7. I really enjoy this piece on the bucs. It really makes sense in getting veteran’s offensive linemen to block for the rookie QB, no matter who it is. But Jameis Winston is the real deal. Lets keep Glen to work with the rookie. But trade Martin for a draft choice would be a much better solution. Lets trade Martin for a draft choice to get another player through the draft who is fresh and his future will be bright. Right now we have 7 more draft choices besides the no#1 pick I hope Jameis Winston is the choice. Surround him with players and personnel who will be there off the field. Tampa Bay is very lucky to have this opportunity to draft a qb of his knowledge of the game and he knows how to win. I dodnot know if Tampa Bay Fans is ready for the changes that will occcued if all of the sudden that Tampa Bay starts winning from day one. GO BUCS

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  8. I do appreciate as a fan of the bucs, I’ve remember the 0&26 days.I remember when Tampa Area only had the University of Tampa. NO Bucs, No Lightings and No Rays. Fans you should be grateful to support these teams. It all comes with a price. All of them want your hard dollars GO Teams and the fans George L Hicks class of 1964 at H>B>Plant living now in Alba,Tx

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  9. Pink~I can totally see where you are coming from but FSUs loss wasnt solely on JW shoulders,nor was the win all Mariota.Oregons defense dominated a FSU offense that never really got clicking…There were plenty of balls thrown to the right spots from Winston~but his WRs failed to secure the ball on crucial downs.That and it seemed their whole offense were hearing them Duck feet pounding the turf in Pasadena…Mariota had the hot hand and his ability to make plays with his feet help cement the win…It wasnt JWs cockiness or arrogance that caused the loss or the lack of his effort~ FSU had bad game and the Noles WRs took the day off…These things happen.
    I did notice that regardless of how the tide turned,JW remained a competitor and continued to fight as the deck stacked against him~he didnt give up.Also after the game and the unsportsmen like chanting from the Ducks players and the crowd(No means No to the Noles fight song rang thru the stadium)Winston was one of the few Noles players to come out and shake hands after the game~in a stadium full of people whos chant was basically directed at him…The Ducks crowd were more content with having shamed Winston than being proud of beating FSU~I was there,deep in Ducks territory~im not making things up…He manned up and showed leadership in a very hostile arena~that takes big ball and not really the move of an arrogant self absorbed jerk…He will face similar experiences when he reaches the NFL and will weather those storms too…
    Mariota clearly was rattled against Ohio and it showed and the Ducks got dominated…
    Oregon went into the Rose Bowl with hopes of beating Winston and they did~but Ohio beat the Ducks and Mariota into the ground…

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    • Well said, cremdonado.

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    • Cremdonado, that’s fair enough but the exact same thing can be said of Mariota against Ohio State. Almost all of Mariota’s passes were thrown to the right spots and on target. Mariota also fought the whole game while getting no help from his O-line or defense, including playing with an injured AC joint and returning the same series. I don’t mind giving Jameis credit for the game against Oregon but Mariota actually played better against Ohio State than FSU and but people only want to judge him by the teams performance in that game. I just don’t get it.

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  10. This Mariota vs Winston debate was old a month ago (yawn) can we write about something else other than a slighted bias veiw of another Winston article?

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    • Well Jon, unfortunately, that’s all we are going to hear about. Having the number one pick in this position is a game changer for the franchise so it’s going to be all over the place. It’s almost like we ONLY have the first pick in the draft.

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  11. Really there isnt anything more important than finding a franchise QB~since we are in the position to get one,You should understand why these articles will dominate the conversation for the next few months…

    I doubt we get much more until all the cuts are in and FA signing/speculation is in full swing…

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  12. I have to side with Pink on the issue of Winston’s character. He seems too self-absorbed, as he thinks everything revolves around him. To a point his self confidence shows his ability to be a winner but it doesn’t show an ability to lead a franchise.There is no I in team and he comes across that way to me from an observer looking from the outside.
    The NFL is a pressure cooker especially at the QB position and I believe Mariota will handle it better and Winston won’t.
    Winston has never been a loser and makes questionable decisions anyway, so what happens when he starts losing?

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  13. None of us know whether Winston or Mariota will be the first pick…let alone whether either will be successful in the NFL. It’s only a 50-50 chance either will be good. I remember Ryan Leaf being considered the best & he was picked #1 over Peyton Manning. If we just had Mariota’s off-field demeanor & Winston’s on-field skills, there’d be no contest. I’m still confident the L & S will make the decision they feel is right for the Bucs. No matter who gets picked, if the O-line isn’t drastically improved over last year, our QB will be eating a lot of dirt!

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    • Leaf was picked 2nd, after Manning…

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    • Good question.

      Don’t believe he has the mental strength to consistently be behind in many games and expect pull it out late. Ain’t gonna happen in the NFL.

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      • This belonged under Bollocks post. Don’t know how it got down on this one.

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    • Someone else with their eyes open and being overhyped about either QB

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  14. I think to much is made of a “rah, rah” guy and a quite guy, I don’t recall Montana or the Manning boys ever being vocal except seeing Peyton go off on Jeff Saturday on the sidelines ONE time. I recall seeing Josh Johnson being fiery in Philly with the O-line trying to get them fired up and saying “wow this guy is a great leader” than I watched a few games and said “this guy stinks” If you win they will follow you thats really the bottom line now with that being said I prefer fiery “rah, rah” guys myself but I also don’t think it means anything

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    • jongruden. ….very well put.

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  15. Winston is NOT the right qb for the bucs. With all the money and women coming his way …he will get into trouble AGAIN !

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    • sunshineben- Better get on board cause he will be our ob in April and I’m fine with that. With his big arm and moxy can u imagine the numbers we will put up with our twin towers at wideout?

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  16. Another Winston-worshipping Fab 5. No thanks.

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  17. How about to make all parties happy we look at the situation like this~
    It appears the Bucs brass are going to make a pick at the one spot.Either MM or JW will be our guy.They will not cave to indecisiveness and trade the pick away for more picks and go for a QB like Petty or Hundley,which has been the way its been done here and time and again,and just doesnt work…We need to end the revolving door at the QB position and build an offense.This is our chance.

    Either guy will bring with him the national spotlight.MM and JW will be linked for quite a while in the eyes of fans and the media so the comparisons are far from over and will likely dominate the discussion for at least the next season~we just have to face that fact.
    I am just happy the bucs are talking more about making a choice than making a trade and I will happily support either guy when one lands in pewter and red.
    It will be nice to see the Bucs on Sportcenter more often as JW to Evans or MM to Evans for the score will be repeated over and over and over…
    Lets get an article on the vets we should be targeting in FA to build the line that is going to protect our new franchise QB~this is now more important than who we go with…

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  18. Great Article Scott. I didn’t realize good experienced OL would be available in Free Agency and it makes sense to go after two of them. Just my opinion, but I thought FSU was a much better match up for Ohio State.

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  19. Scott– I remember thinking the same thing watching the post combine interview. Very clear difference in the two.

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  20. Interesting read from Gil Brandt about the two QBs. States Winston better short term solution, Marriota better long term solution. So it comes down to finding an immediate solution short term or finding that long term QB everyone talks about.

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  21. I don’t know much about Jameis at FL State and I know nothing about him before college but I will say this much. His ability to stay upbeat and his determination will be tested after being drafted by this team. He went 26-1 in college… Whats not to be happy and upbeat about. But he’s going to lose as the Bucs starting QB. Maybe lose more than he ever has in his life to start his pro career. It’s going to be a test of his character in a way he might be totally unfamiliar with. And then we’ll see whether he’s a playa or a player. I hope for my teams sake it’s the latter. And I hope it leads to my team re-signing a QB to a new contract for the first time in 40 years. That’s been one of the most telling statistics I’ve read from SR in a while. We need another Brooks, Sapp, Lynch nucleus to get it started again and Jameis needs to be right in the middle of it.

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  22. Mariotta seems like a good kid and I hope for his sake Philly is able to move up to get him. I would love to see what Chip Kelly could do with him instead of another team trying to force him to be a pocket passer before he’s ready.

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  23. Winston came off an overconfident clown who deflected questions with humor instead of answering questions. What I don’t get from the Winston backers is that they are ok with admonishing him for 100% of his off-field misdeeds. How does the world work that way.

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    • Bc we need a quarterback lol. We should’ve given the Colts the farm and drafted Andrew luck. Haha jk. Then we wouldn’t have Evans who imo will be our first hof offensive player unless alstott gets in before Evans retires. .which prolly won’t happen But that’s a topic for a different thread…I wonder if we could talk alstott into returning as our rb coach. What do you all think?

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      • Alstott….Hall of Fame?? Mike has not been selected for the Bucs Ring of Honor yet, perhaps you could head that effort first. Thanks for the remark though, it broke the monotony of this endless winless debate.

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  24. THE WINSTON REPORT HAS SPOKEN SO IT MUST BE SO.

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  25. We should be happy the Saints are in cap trouble- imagine if they drafted Mariota to B/U and learn from Brees for a few years…We would be F’d for a long time coming….

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  26. WinstonReport.com

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  27. I’ll be happy with either QB but I’ve always leaned more toward Mariota as I feel he carries less risk. The more I see of Winston though, the more I like him so right now I’m at about 50/50. The only thing that really scares me is the possibility of drafting an awesome QB who isn’t playing because he’s suspended/fired/incarcerated. I have faith that L&L will do their research and draft well though. I’d say we did pretty well last year with less time so there’s a lot of hope for us in 2015. The fact that we’re in the worst division means there’s a great chance for us to make the playoffs.

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  28. Congratulations Scott! You mentioned the name “Winston” 60 times in this week’s Fab Five. 60 times!!!!!! It’s one thing to continue to beat the drum about drafting this guy. And we all know who you think they should pick and will pick with that Number #1 choice this year, but do you really find it necessary to mention his name 60 times in one Fab Five article?? Don’t you think that over doing it just a bit? Please. Try to control yourself next week. If you cut back to mentioning his name just 35 or 40 times, you will still be making your point. Remember, anything in moderation is okay. Geez.

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  29. “Winston had to compartmentalize the alleged rape investigation during his Seminoles career and was still able to go out and perform at an extremely high level on the field every Saturday” Or just possibly he didn’t care what anyone thought. We are now excusing his behavior because he was able to focus on football while being a thug ? One thing is for sure, Bucs better have Vetted this guy up and down because if this guy is another huge screw up, it will be tough to recover from and Fans will be shaken.

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  30. Maybe he simply knew he was innocent and felt confident the truth would eventually absolve him of any wrongdoing.

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  31. Self absorbed? Read an article where Jameis stopped by the diamond at FSU to spend some time with his old teamates before heading back to S.D. to work on football. His mates where blown away that Jameis now headed for the big time, spent three hours of his busy schedule, to be with them. That’s who he is said one mate, that’s why people love him. So much for being all about him. Why do some of you people project him to be something he’s not. Enough of this B.B. gun shooting already. Every kid who’s owned one, has shot at things they wished they hadn’t, me, and Lovie included. V Jax, and Mike, each had a grand with Arroyo, Glennon, McCown. Think what we’ll be with Koetter, Winston throwing the ball. Fab 1 , yes, Fab 2, oh yes.

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  32. Loved Winstons fire and ball skills from his first snap as freshman…but what sold me was that years Clemson game his speech to the team in locker room and handing out the worst beating Clemson has ever had at home in history…thats when i know he was a lock…never thought we would have a shot at him!

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  33. Sick to death of all of PR’s pro Winston articles. Far worse than the pro McCown, anti-Schiano, pro Freeman BS we were subjected to (how’d that all work out for you, BTW?). Odds of a 1st round QB pick working out are low in all but a few situations, and exaggerating things to make this seem like one of them feels like a desperate attempt to draw attention to the franchise and therefore PR’s site and subscriber base. Suggesting what we need is a bunch of OL in their 30’s is also misguided. Wouldn’t you like to be in the Cowboys’ situation? How do you think we get there from here w/out drafting OL early and often? We need to build a winner the right way, inside out, and for the long term. Or we better carry 3 QBs and keep the ‘spleen cart’ handy. Becoming disgusted with the whole situation, including L&L and especially PR which keeps pushing for quick fixes despite consistently being proven wrong.

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    • Lol at “the spleen cart”! I was at that game when Simms lost his spleen. Watching the statue known as Delhomme scramble for a 1st down to put the nail in the coffin was fitting for such a heartbreaking game.

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      • Looks like Simms brain is still in tact though! Just saw American Sniper. Had a shot, had to take it! lol.

        http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2373506-simms-winston-will-be-no1-overall-pick-weight-explosion-concerns-remain

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    • Who are you? Gil Brandt? Sounds like you know all the answers Mr “Matador” and a cowboys fan to boot. (maybe you ARE Gil Brandt). You all are the NFL poster child when its comes to QB’s not working out. And the mastermind behind the complete turnaround for the Cowbabies-Defense was former Buc assistant head coach and D-line coach Rod Marinelli. To me, Marinelli was the unsung hero of the great Bucs defenses of the late 90’s and into the new millennium. Perhaps he has another run with us before he ends his coaching career. I bet you didn’t like the Sapp selection at first too. Or the move to get Gruden? That didn’t pay off at all, eh? Typical armchair idiot and you should be kinder to the writers here. I think they are more than fair with their editorials and articles. They are Bucs fans as well in most all cases. Unlike you though, they are not perfect and bat 100% on all draft selections, free agent acquisitions, etc. Geez.

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  34. The WinstonReport – one wonders exactly what is expected from PR guys. If they give their opinion folks get upset, if they stay objective it seems the same group is whining about the failure to take a stand.

    PR has taken a position – and explained why it might come to pass, and why it might not. Take your pick – bc we aren’t finding out until draft day.

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  35. Dbuc- give folks a chance to bitch,they gonna take it…When the are paying on top of it,then they feel entitled to…The Internet allows for folks to do so with little or no repercussion and proves time and time again to be a bridge for trolls to live under…

    I get it- Winston IS NOT everyone’s choice but is widely viewed buy many of the talking heads to be the lead horse…I doubt there is a single player in the entire draft that would/could make everyone happy- maybe Andrew Luck,but I doubt even he would please the entire fan base…
    When it comes to running a fansite you are basically damned if you do and damned if you don’t…

    And before any of you get your defensive panties in a bunch- I am speaking in generalities and not pointing the finger at any one individual or those who aren’t in the Winston camp…

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  36. Very interesting article on Winston Scott. It PinkStob was ever around Winston for any period of time at all, he would come to the conclusion that Winston is not arrongant, but just confident.

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  37. I will admit. I’ve been hard on SR. But I’m starting to understand that Honestly, Winston prolly is our best bet. He talked about. This is the first time he can concentrate on being just t a qb. not throwing a baseball so much will help out his shoulder. I like that he competed at the combine and excelled. To me that says a lot about him. I know combines are Not everything but he didn’t have to throw but he did. I like his confidence and football iq. Just please Winston don’t f this up, we’re all tired of being let down.

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  38. We Bucs fans have been told time and time again that this guy/this coach/this system is going to take us to the post season and year after year it’s gone nowhere…Winston shows promise- but so have a ton of others- I understand why folks aren’t hopping on the bandwagon- we. Bucs fans have been burned too many damn times..this coupled with Winston’s off field antics is why the fanbase isn’t 100% in his camp…

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  39. Mariota is the master of the Shotgun offence which we will be running 85% of the time. Hard to contain Mariota with his fast twitch muscles. I don’t care about snaps from center that’s just about over. Draft Mariota and turn the scoreboard into a pinball machine.

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  40. If the Buc’s draft Mariota they will only get him for 5 years max.Then Chip will finally get his man.

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