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Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston has been missing in action over the last three weeks.

Not just on the field, but also in front of the microphones.

But with the announcement from head coach Dirk Koetter on Wednesday that Winston would be under center against the Packers this week, Winston was obligated to meet with the media for the weekly quarterback press conference.

Winston was asked about the allegations from an Uber driver that she was groped by the Bucs quarterback back in 2016, and he was understandably calculated with his responses.

“I’m going to respect the process (NFL investigation) most importantly,” Winston said. “That’s all I can do.”

Tampa Bay Times writer Rick Stroud followed up by asking Winston about his association with former FSU teammates Ronald Darby, in not only this latest accusation, but also the first one from his days at Florida State where he was accused of sexual assault by Erica Kinsman. Winston was never charged after a number of investigations including ones by the Tallahassee Police Department and an FSU Code of Conduct board.

“Again, I put my statement out there discussing this allegation,” Winston said. “I have to respect the process, on that part. I’ve been vindicated several times on the past situation. My statements on those accusations stand firm, too. As always, it’s a growing process and I’m going to continue to grow every day.”

Winston was then asked if he feels he will be vindicated in the latest allegation, and the Bucs signal caller was quick to respond.

“Absolutely.”

The next question was about of Winston was if he was worried about a possible suspension from the league, which seems almost inevitable short of the Uber driver completely withdrawing her complaint. Even then, there is no rhyme or reason when it comes to punishment handed down by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

“I have no fear at all, but like I said, I have to respect their process,” Winston said.

“One thing about my family is we are very strong in our faith. We’re very strong in believing that nothing from our past can control our future. What I’ve been to Tampa Bay and how I’ve grown over the past few years has meant a lot to my family—seeing my development even through college. I think that’s more important than what could be said by any outside source.”

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About the Author: Mark Cook

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 mark@pewterreport.com
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cheveliar
3 years ago

Doesn’t sound like a guilty guy to me…

surferdudes
3 years ago

Was he asked, who was sitting in the front seat if him, and Darby were in the back? Was there a third person in the car at all? If he couldn’t disclose that information to the press, did he disclose it to the league investigators? Simple straight forward questions, were they asked?

surferdudes
3 years ago

Just listened to the press conference. No the questions I stated above were not asked. It took almost mid way through the presser to even get around to asking Jameis about the allegations. No one cares about what he learned from watching Fitz for three weeks. Everyone wants to know what happened that night in Az. Small market press corp, way to dig deep for the truth.

Destino102
Reply to  surferdudes
3 years ago

If Winston was going to tell his side of the story, he would have told it by now. As any good lawyer would tell you, proclaim your innocents, and that’s it. Keep your mouth shut. It is not your job to prove your not guilty, but the accusers job to prove you are guilty. When Jameis goes to the podium, he is not being sworn in, so he doesn’t have to answer the questions the reporters aski him. They know this, so they are only going to ask questions that he is willing to answer.

BP1
BP1
Reply to  Destino102
3 years ago

Destino102, Just what I was thinking. surferdudes must be a big TMZ fan.

Bucfish7
3 years ago

I’m with you suferdudes. I have so many questions about this situation, and it doesn’t look like any of them were asked. Knowing what I know about Pewter Report staff though, I’m sure there’s a good reason. Seems like all the reporters were careful and danced around the big questions as if they were told certain questions that could NOT be asked. That’s unfortunate if it happened because I just want the truth. I’m a big fan of JW, and I want to stay that way. However, if he’s caught in a lie, or worse, actually proven guilty of this… Read more »

macabee
3 years ago

Let me be perfectly clear. I am a diehard Jameis Winston supporter – have been from the day he was selected as Bucs QB. And I continue to believe in his skills as a QB realizing there is much growth ahead. But Let me assure you that in no way would I be forgiving of lying or willful deception to cover over a wrongdoing. I am hoping that Winston is just guilty of poor judgment from an immature young adult – but lying under duress is different. In my mind that goes to another whole set of values – values… Read more »

Pick6
Reply to  macabee
3 years ago

i’m in the same boat. having met winston in passing a few times now and knowing people who know him far better on a personal level, i am inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt. the groping and the slurs are 1,000 miles from the Jameis anybody who spends any reasonable amount of time around him knows, and his college experience seems to have encouraged him to be a non-entity in tampa when it comes to nightlife. Moreover, his sincerity and certainty seem unequivocal in this matter HOWEVER, if his account is proven to be untrue, that changes… Read more »

scubog
3 years ago

Test

surferdudes
3 years ago

Let me be clear, I don’t blame Jameis for Let the process play out line his lawyer instructed him to say. I’m not making any judgments until all the facts are known. I’m banging on the press for not asking the hard questions we all want answers to. As Belichick would say, do your damn job! The soft ball questions, how does your family feel Jameis? Who gives a rats ass! Who else was in the car besides you, and Darby, who was in the front seat! Can’t tell us, have you told the league? How hard is that to… Read more »

tnew
Reply to  Mark Cook
3 years ago

This is the truth. Understand, this is in the civil world now. Every word he utters is an opportunity for the accuser. She doesn’t have to prove he did anything. She only has to cast doubt. Everything he says, even if it is the truth, but he can’t substatiate it 100%, he will be guilty in the civil court. It would be negligent for him to say anything more than is statement at this time. Quite honestly, I don’t think he should even speculate about suspension or vindication at this point, much less start naming names, or say what he… Read more »

surferdudes
3 years ago

Yes I want you to ask as a reporter, that’s your job. He doesn’t have to answer, but you should still ask. Why couldn’t you at least ask if he’s disclosed more to the league, then to the press? Reporters ask tough questions all the time knowing they’ll get lawyer speak, but it’s your responsibility to at least try to get to the truth. That’s if you consider yourself a real reporter, or just a guy who likes hanging out around the team, doesn’t want to ruffle any feathers, and just serve up softball questions.

pinkstob
Reply to  surferdudes
3 years ago

Surferdudes I want to commend you for prioritizing integrity over thumbs down votes because surely you knew they were coming before you targeted the press on this. I’m a fan of MC but you are right to say he and other press members prioritized not ruffling feathers over doing their jobs. I would be remiss if I gave an anonymous thumbs up to someone for not being afraid of ruffling feathers by saying the right thing like you did.

Devasher
Reply to  pinkstob
3 years ago

I remember when the top picks in the 2015 NFL Draft were still being determined near the end of the season and the Jets were looking at a top pick. I recall someone posting a fan photo of Jameis Winston in a Jets jersey, and I can imagine Jameis is thanking his lucky stars he is in the friendly confines of the Tampa media market and not swimming with the sharks in New York right now. While MC is right to say that Jameis would give a canned response, I can only imagine the firestorm that would be happening if… Read more »

surferdudes
3 years ago

Jameis put himself in this situation, the press should’ve made him feel uncomfortable. No one even asked if he was drinking that night, if so how much? Does he maybe have an alcohol problem? I know some really nice people who when they drink to much turn into real A holes. M.C. hardly replies to comments anymore, but by pushing his buttons he had to try putting me down, he should’ve pushed Jameis, who knows what he might’ve said.

Destino102
Reply to  surferdudes
3 years ago

Let’s just follow this trhough logically. Scott and Mark have been doing this journalism thing for a while now. So have most of the other reporters that report the Bucs. They know what questions they ask that can be answered and what can’t be answered. But let’s say Mark asks Jameis, “Hey, Jameis, who was the other guy with you in the car besieds Darby, and did they sexually assault the Uber driver?” There is a 99% Jameis will give a non-answer, like, “I can’t comment on that wihle there is an ongoing NFL investigation.” Here are the results of… Read more »

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