Entering his second season in the NFL, Jameis Winston, already a Pro Bowler and 4,000-yard passer, is now the undisputed leader and face of the Buccaneers franchise. The mission for Winston in 2016 is to develop even further in head coach Dirk Koetter’s offense while taking full command of the huddle and leading Tampa Bay to more victories.
It’s often said the biggest improvement for NFL quarterbacks comes in the second season. That’s why Winston’s performance and hopeful progression will be under an even closer microscope this year, and as such, PewterReport.com will return the “Winston Report” throughout the 2016 training camp.
With one preseason game down and three more to go, the Bucs returned to the practice field Saturday morning for the 12th session of training camp.
Winston, who finished Thursday night 7-of-9 for 97 yards and a TD, looked settled in from the start at practice, completing his first three passes in both opening series of 7-on-7 and 11-on-11 (blitz period) scrimmage. Though the offense with Winston under center wasn’t able to connect on any deep routes from midfield, it was due to good coverage and the ball was at least thrown to where only the receiver had a chance.
His best throws, meanwhile, came on a seam route over the middle in red zone 11-on-11s to Vincent Jackson, and another on a seam-route, back-shoulder pass to Cameron Brate, this time in 7-on-7s from midfield. Here’s the count on Winston’s live-action reps from Saturday morning:
Winston’s 11-on-11 stats during blitz period: – Complete to Doug Martin on cross underneath
– Complete to Cameron Brate on quick out
– Complete to Brate on 10-yard post
– Incomplete on quick out intended for Austin Seferian-Jenkins
– Incomplete on out to Mike Evans, play-action roll right and threw on the run but well-covered by Brent Grimes
Winston’s 11-on-11 stats in red zone: – Complete to Vincent Jackson on seam route, read quickly and delivered a strike
– Incomplete on out to Jackson, play-action roll right and threw on run but covered well
– Incomplete on out to the corner of the end zone intended for Adam Humphries, broken up last second by Jude Adjei-Barimah
– Complete to Humphries on out route
Winston’s 11-on-11 stats from midfield: – Incomplete on deep post intended for Evans, ball a little too far in front but receiver covered by three defenders.
– Complete to Jackson on comeback in traffic, tipped and caught on the ground
– Complete to Brate on short comeback
– Complete to Donteea Dye on comeback, delivered a strike and hit receiver as he turned (last pass of the day for Winston)
Winston’s 7-on-7 stats from midfield: – Complete to Evans on out route
– Complete to Jackson on quick slant
– Complete to Andre Davis on quick slant
– Complete to Evans on 10-yard post
– Complete to Jackson on hook route in traffic, delivered as he turned
– Incomplete on deep go near the sideline intended for Jonathan Krause, in front and covered well
– Incomplete on seam route intended for Tevin Westbrook, ball a little too high
– Complete to Luke Stocker on quick out
– Complete to Brate on seam-route back-shoulder, covered well by Kwon Alexander but ball fit in
– Complete to Evans on comeback
– Incomplete near sideline intended for Humphries, thrown on the run
Winston’s 7-on-7 stats in red zone: – Complete to Kivon Cartwright on checkdown
– Incomplete over the middle intended for Humphries, broken up by Alexander
– Incomplete over the middle intended for Seferian-Jenkins, thrown a little high with defenders in good position
While Winston said after practice that the offense is never satisfied – “we’ll never arrive,” he said, “our objective is always to get better” – he took some positives from Thursday night in Philadelphia, including the screen game and the roster depth. It’s just hard to win games with five turnovers, he noted, especially when two of them gift the opponent with red zone field position.
“In my eyes, we did okay,” he said. “For the future, we want to be way better. We want to be more consistent.”
Key to becoming more consistent is Winston’s command of the offense. There was hardly a game plan Thursday night, as Week 1 of the preseason is about player evaluation, but Winston is already comfortable running out of the no-huddle and has all the confidence in his supporting cast.
“I believe coach Koetter always put us in good situations,” Winston said. “We have a great supporting cast, a great offense. For us to be able to move the ball effectively, just regular tempo in no-huddle, that really puts the defense in a bind. I’m just comfortable running the whole offense.”
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
Contact him at: email@example.com