Bucs QB Jameis Winston & WR Vincent Jackson - Photos by: Cliff Welch/PR
Tuesday, November 8 is Decision Day when it comes to the 2016 U.S. Presidential election, and the options America has to choose from aren’t terribly appealing to many citizens given the high unfavorable ratings of Republican billionaire outsider Donald Trump and former Secretary of State and First Lady Hillary Clinton of the Democratic Party.
Trump’s boorish behavior, questionable temperament and stance on immigration don’t sit well with some folks, while Clinton’s numerous scandals and FBI investigations, including government e-mails housed on a private server and possible corruption at the Clinton Foundation, have brought her poll numbers down and tightened the race.
Libertarian Gary Johnson and Green Party Jill Stein are alternate candidates, but are expected to draw less than five percent of the vote nationwide.
But what if Buccaneers fans had a different option to run the country? What if there was a candidate from the Pewter Party to choose from?
Respecting the privacy of the Tampa Bay players when it comes to whom they are voting for, PewterReport.com polled some of the Buccaneers regarding who they would vote for within the walls of their own locker room at One Buccaneer Place. Among the small sample that comprised the poll include both starters and reserves and offensive and defensive players.
In addition to nominating a candidate for President and Vice-President, the players sampled also selected a few top Cabinet positions, including Secretary of Defense and Secretary of Health and Human Services, as well as selecting an Attorney General and nominating a new Supreme Court Justice to replace Antonin Scalia, who passed away last year.
Hopefully, Bucs fans can see the humor in this light-hearted political article and it can help reduce the stress and anxiety that some face on Election Day.
Bucs QB Jameis Winston threw 4 TDs in Atlanta – Photo by: Getty Images
It should come as no surprise that Bucs captain and unquestioned leader Jameis Winston received the most votes for the U.S. Presidency from those polled by PewterReport.com in the locker room.
“I accept the nomination of my party,” Winston said before delivering a popular message that would likely resonate with all Tampa Bay fans. “We want to please the fans and win! So whatever we have to do to make sure the fans are happy and coming to games and supporting us, we’ll do. That means winning.”
The charismatic Winston, who has thrown nine touchdowns and just one interception in the last four games, knows that any strong campaign has to resonate with the media.
“We also want to make sure the media is happy because whenever the media is on you side everything is good,” Winston said. “We’re also going to protect this Buccaneer country.”
Winston got quite a bit of support among his peers in the locker room.
“For President at the top of the ticket would definitely have to be No. 3 – Jameis Winston,” Bucs nose tackle Akeem Spence said. “For Vice President I would throw Kwon [Alexander] in there for a little change up. That’s an aggressive ticket. Both of those guys are young guys that make plays that you expect from five-, six- and seven-year vets, and they are in their second year.”
“This country would be fired up with those two leading the way. They would lead the right way. Winston is a great ambassador, but he’s aggressive and he commands guys to follow and do the right things. He shows it with his play and he shows his leadership in the locker room all the time. Kwon is that type of guy, too. They’d get it done.”
However, there were some other interesting nominations from the Pewter Party for the role of President that are worth sharing.
“I would pick Robert Ayers for President and Luke Stocker for Vice President,” Bucs cornerback Jude Adjei-Barimah said. “Ayers is an enforcer and I think he would be a great president. He has a commanding voice. When he speaks people listen. He has a certain presence about him.”
“Luke would bring balance to the ticket, and he’s on offense. He’s very detailed and he’s real quiet. He goes about his business every day. He’s the opposite of Robert but complements him well.”
Stocker also received a nomination for President from fellow tight end Brandon Myers.
Bucs TE Luke Stocker and QB Jameis Winston – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
“For President I would pick Luke Stocker for everything that he represents,” Myers said. “He’s very smart – definitely one of the smartest players on the team. He’s no-nonsense. He means business and guys respect that. He’s got a lighter side to him and we joke around. But when I think of being President, that’s who I think of.
“As for his running mate, I feel like you have to have a complimentary person. Maybe someone like Russell Shepard? He’s one of those laid back guys. He can persuade anybody and probably sell ice to an Eskimo. His pre-game messages are one of the highlights around here. I want hear what Shep has to say or what he doesn’t say. Those two would get my vote. Their message would probably be: ‘Love It Or Leave It.’ If you don’t love America, just leave.”
Bucs defensive tackle and team captain would put Winston on the ticket – but as Vice President due to his youth and inexperience.
“I think the best sales pitch would be Jameis, but the winner would be Vincent Jackson,” McCoy said. “He talks like he’s supposed to be a President and he’s experienced. I would pick Vincent to be President and Jameis for Vice President.”
Winston took no issue with that and said his Pewter Party vote would actually go to the elder statesman in the locker room if he couldn’t vote for himself.
“Vincent Jackson would get my vote,” Winston said. “He’d be the guy I would nominate. Either he or G (McCoy) would make a great president.”
So whom would Winston pick to be his running mate? The answer may surprise you.
“My V.P. would be Ali Marpet if were President,” Winston said. “Ali is a firm guy who always backs me up. If I ever couldn’t perform my duties I know Ali would do a great job as President. I love Ali and he’s a great manager of everything. He’s always on time. He has a routine and he’s very smart.”
There was a wide range of nominations for different Cabinet positions in the Bucs locker room, starting with Secretary of Defense in charge of protecting America – and Raymond James Stadium where the Bucs are winless this year.
Bucs DT Clinton McDonald – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
“My pick for Secretary of Defense of would be Clinton McDonald,” Spence said. “Clint would defend the country by pulling out all the stops. He would do whatever it takes just like he does for every guy in this locker room. He goes to war and gets it done.”
Winston also stayed on the defensive side of the ball for his pick, which seemed logical.
“My Secretary of Defense would have to be Gerald McCoy,” Winston said. “He’s our five-star general of this team. I know having him on our team helping defend us and Tampa Bay is a good thing.”
McCoy picked his next door neighbor on the defensive line to help defend the country.
“Definitely Clinton McDonald for Secretary of Defense,” McCoy said. “He’s just a strong, fierce guy. He knows all the things to say and he’s intelligent. He would defend our country the best.”
Adjei-Barimah crossed the line of scrimmage for his selection.
“Secretary of Defense would be Joe Hawley because he’s real aggressive,” Adjei-Barimah said. “I think he’d be a good pick because he’s a tough center. He used to protecting Jameis, so he’d protect the country, too.”
Myers voted for himself.
“For Secretary of Defense that would be me,” Myers said. “Coming from Iowa, I have a lot of knowledge in weapons and the silos [in Iowa that house them].”
As for Attorney General, which is the nation’s top law enforcement officer, results also varied.
“Clinton McDonald would be my pick for Attorney General,” Adjei-Barimah said. “He would bring some punishment. Notice I’m going with a bunch of big guys, right? I think a lot of our big guys would do a good job. Clinton is very fair, too.”
Spence crossed the aisle and went offense for his pick for Attorney General.
“The guy to dole out the punishment would be Vincent Jackson,” Spence said. “He’s kind of like the sheriff around here. He’s our NFLPA rep, so he’s kind of a no-nonsense guy, a guy that is always doing the right things the right way. When you see VJax you are looking at the ultimate pro. He’s fair and he’ll listen to guys, but he’ll bring the punishment if you mess up.”
One team captain voted for himself to enforce the laws of the land.
Bucs DT Gerald McCoy celebrates with his teammates – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
“I would pick myself for the prosecutor,” McCoy said. “I don’t like stuff to be done the wrong way. If a coach says, ‘Do it like this,’ don’t complain and whine about it. Just do what he said. So I would probably pick myself.”
Myers stayed in the tight ends room for his choice of Attorney General
“Cameron Brate for sure,” Myers said. “He thinks he’s never wrong and if he is, he’ll find a way to justify it and make you think he is right. He would know all the laws – he’s a Harvard guy.”
As for Winston, his nomination would be the Bucs player with the nickname “Brawly Hawley.”
“The top law enforcement guy would have to be my center, Joe Hawley,” Winston said. “He’s an enforcer. He’s my guy – he’s my right hand man.”
Speaking of laws, the position of U.S. Supreme Court is in the balance on Election Day as the next President will nominate a replacement for Scalia. Who would the Bucs players select to sit on the nation’s highest court?
Once again Adjei-Barimah crossed the line of scrimmage and continued his selection of big Buccaneers.
“The best judge would be Demar Dotson,” Adjei-Barimah said. “Demar is a spiritual guy, so his morals are going to be intact. He’s got a good moral compass, and he’s a big dude so you’re not going to talk crazy to the judge. The dude is like 6-foot-9. Demar is fair, calm and collected. He doesn’t get too emotional. Demar would make a good judge.”
Myers agreed with Adjei-Barimah’s selection.
“Dot would be good with that, he’s pretty fair,” Myers said. “He’ll listen to you.”
Spence stayed in the defensive line room for his nomination.
“I would pick Gerald McCoy for the Supreme Court,” Spence said. “Definitely, Gerald. He knows the law around here and the ins and outs of everything and he’s a good judge. He listens and lays out the verdict. I think he’d be Jameis’ pick, too.”
Spence was close, but it was actually another defensive tackle that Winston had in mind.
“The fairest guy in the locker room is Clinton McDonald,” Winston said. “He’s a stand-up guy and he’s also one of my right-hand men. I trust him. He would be a great justice.”
McCoy went with perhaps the smartest Buccaneer for his choice to sit on the U.S. Supreme Court.
Bucs TE Cameron Brate – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
“Definitely Cameron Brate,” McCoy said. “That Harvard education kicks in quick with that guy. We have these discussions in the locker room and I always go to Cam for his opinion because Cam breaks it down. He looks at an argument from every angle, so definitely Cam Brate.”
Brate actually received the most votes for Secretary of Health and Human Services for being the biggest health nut – and perhaps the pretty boy – of the Buccaneers.
“Cameron Brate for Secretary of Health and Human Services,” Adjei-Barimah said. “Definitely Cam. He’s always in here stretching, rolling on the floor, in the hot tub, in the cold tub, sauna, steam room. He’s going to make sure we have a healthy country because he makes sure he has a healthy body.”
Winston deliberated for a moment, but also came around to Brate in the end.
“Adam Humphries … no wait, Cam Brate,” Winston said. “I can’t believe I said Adam, but it’s Cam Brate. He’s always taking care of himself and looking good. He just fits that role.”
It was a three-way tie for Myers between third-string quarterback Ryan Griffin, Humphries and Brate.
“You can probably put the three roommates together — Griff, Hump, Cam. They’re all pretty up on their health I guess you can say. They’re all single, young, good-looking guys, who like to take care of themselves, too.”
Spence made a forceful case for one of his defensive linemen.
“Rob Ayers,” Spence said. “He’s always taking care of his body. He’s in here early getting in the hot tub, coming in on his off days getting treatment. He does whatever it takes and he eats healthy. He would make the country healthy – whether it liked it or not.”
McCoy rounded out the Secretary of Health and Human Services selection with another defensive selection.
“I would say Chris Conte,” McCoy said. “He doesn’t put anything unhealthy in his body. When we have pizza he won’t eat it. If we have nachos or wings he won’t eat them. He’s a health nut. He would be good in that role.”
Polls show a majority of Americans have an unsatisfactory view of Congress and also believe the country is going in the wrong direction. Unfortunately for 3-5 Tampa Bay, the Buccaneers are going in the wrong direction, too.
But Winton, Marpet, Jackson, Stocker, Alexander, McCoy, Shepard, McDonald, Dotson, Ayers, Brate and the rest of the players of the Pewter Party will continue to work hard for the votes of Tampa Bay fans this season long past Election Day.
Make The Buccaneers Great Again.
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]
Gee, I can’t believe the Pewter Report fans didn’t take this opportunity to regurgitate their own political views in our unsuspecting laps. Interesting how the players mentioned the same teammates. Isn’t it telling that so many nominees are some of our youngest players? Maybe that bodes well for the future of the team.
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