For the first time since 1987, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had the No. 1 overall NFL Draft pick and selected former Florida State Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston. The area is abuzz with excitement for the Bucs news quarterback, one the fans and the organization hope becomes a franchise quarterback, and can lead the Buccaneers back to the playoffs for the first time since Jon Gruden roamed the sidelines at Raymond James Stadium.
PewterReport.com will chronicle Winston’s practice reports throughout camp. Winston was very productive in the red zone on Saturday with five touchdown passes. Make sure to check back with PewterReport.com daily for our Winston Report.
Tampa Bay rookie quarterback Jameis Winston rebounded from an uneven performance on Friday with a solid showing on Saturday after a two-hour rain delay at One Buccaneer Place. Winston’s completion percentage wasn’t anything to write home about in 11-on-11’s on Saturday, especially in the red zone, but he threw for more touchdowns than during any other training camp practice thus far.
Due to individual period, an extended 15-minute special teams period and the offensive install period, it was nearly an hour before Winston threw his first pass against a defensive player. After working with the starters in the 9-on-7 run period, Winston jogged across the field and spent the last few minutes of that session with the wide receivers and defensive backs as Seth Lobato took over the duties of handing the ball off to the running backs.
Winston threw just four passes and was 2-of-4 in 1-on-1’s. His first pass to Vincent Jackson was too low, but he connected with Rannell Hall on a post on the next throw. A pass to Donteea Dye was too high, but Mike Evans came down with the ball on a nice smash route. After the completion, Winston and Evans did an aerial hip bump before jogging over to the first 11-on-11 session.
Tampa Bay’s rookie quarterback connected with tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins for a nice completion down the seam before hitting Hall on a skinny post. Jackson appeared to haul in Winston’s third completion in a row, but cornerback Alterraun Verner knocked out of his hands as the two went to the ground.
On the next play, a defender tipped Winston’s pass and cornerback Sterling Moore made a diving, one-handed interception.
Winston came back with a completion on a crossing route to Robert Herron before Seferian-Jenkins had the ball swatted away by safety Major Wright, who had a good day. Winston hit Kaelin Clay with a wide receiver screen before misfiring on a throw to Herron to end the 11-on-11 period. Winston finished that session 4-of-8 with two perfect passes batted away and one interception.
Next came the 7-on-7 period against cornerbacks, safeties and linebackers and Winston started off completing 3-of-4 passes with connections to tight end Brandon Myers, Herron and a deep 20-yard pass to Evans. Winston’s pass to Seferian-Jenkins in the end zone was too high and almost picked off by safety Keith Tandy.
Winston hit Myers again, but his second attempt to Seferian-Jenkins in the end zone sailed too high. Winston threw a 20-yard dart across the middle to Russell Shepard, but he dropped a perfectly thrown pass, which caused groans from the crowd. Winston’s jump ball to Jackson in the corner of the end zone was too tall for the 6-foot-5 wide receiver, who was well covered.
In his final 7-on-7 reps, Winston found Tavarres King with back-to-back completions before hitting Kenny Bell with two strikes – the first of which was in the end zone. Winston timed his pass perfectly for Bell, who leaped up in the air in the end zone for a spectacular catch. Winston finished the 7-on-7 period completing 8-of-12 with one dropped touchdown by Shepard, who struggled today.
The final 11-on-11 session in the red zone saw Winston hit King for a touchdown pass as he broke free from Wright. Trying to go hit Evans across the middle, Winston’s pass was low and almost picked off by safety Bradley McDougald, as Evans fell to the ground. On the next play, Winston’s pass to tight end Luke Stocker was almost picked off by linebacker Lavonte David, who made a great break on the ball and dropped a sure interception.
Bucs WR Robert Herron – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
Winston came back and hit Stocker for a short gain on a tight end screen before finding Herron on the goal line for a touchdown across the middle. Winston had trouble connecting on fade passes to the end zone and his lob to Evans went through the back of the end zone.
But Winston and Evans would hook up on a tipped pass that was originally intended to go to him anyways. Bucs middle linebacker Bruce Carter tipped the pass and it ricocheted backwards in the air right to Evans, who leaped up in the middle of the end zone and caught it for Winston’s third touchdown of the period.
With the pass rush bearing down and all the receivers covered, Winston had to throw a pass in the dirt to avoid a sack. On the next snap, Winston tried to connect with Evans on another play, but it was broken up by nickel cornerback Isaiah Frey.
After a fumbled snap, Winston hit running back Doug Martin for a touchdown on a screen pass with left guard Kadeem Edwards leading the way with a nice downfield block. Winston’s next pass attempt to Herron was incomplete, and then cornerback Mike Jenkins ended the 11-on-11 red zone session with a dropped interception in front of the end zone.
Jenkins was flagged for pass interference on the play as he was grabbing King, so the pick wouldn’t have counted had he hauled it in. Winston was 5-of-12 in the final 11-on-11 red zone session, but four of those completions were for touchdowns.
The Bucs offense then backed up to its own 1-yard line to practice getting out of the shadow of its own goal posts. Running backs Jorvorskie Lane, Joey Iosefa and Charles Sims got a lot of work on running plays from the 1-yard line, but Winston did throw two passes. He connected with Bell down the left sidelines on a go route for a big gain. Winston’s pass across the middle to Shepard was thrown on the money, but dropped to end the practice.
Winston’s receivers let him down on Friday, and that trend continued on Saturday, especially with two big drops by Shepard, a drop by Jackson and a mishandled pass by Seferian-Jenkins.
Finals Stats (unofficial): 20-of-38 (52.6) with five touchdowns and one interception
Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, the beach and family time.Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at email@example.com
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