A lot has been made about a recent trip that Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston made to an elementary school, and it wasn’t justified. If he stays on the course that he’s on, he will be just fine.
Ever since Jameis Winston was drafted by the Buccaneers, he has done a fantastic job on and off the field. However, questioning his character is a hobby for many. Why? I’m really not here to answer that. He has done a whole lot of good in the community these last two years. Part of the reason for his outstanding off-field work is the people he has surrounded himself with.
More from The Pewter Plank
- Devin White posts cryptic message to Lavonte David on Twitter
- ESPN predicts surprising outcome to Devin White trade saga
- Updated Buccaneers depth chart after signing two players from rookie minicamp
- Todd Bowles sends clear message about Baker Mayfield’s role with Bucs
- The Athletic is wrong about Bucs one ‘must-watch’ game in 2023
Early in his time as a Buc, Winston got in contact with the legendary Derrick Brooks. He has received advice from Brooks at different times throughout the past couple of years. Brooks publicly gave No. 3 advice as recently as February in response to his poor word choice during a small portion of his speech to a group of students. The Hall of Famer told Winston not to “go into a turtle shell” and gave him different techniques for connecting with students in the future. He didn’t criticize the young quarterback, but instead chose to advise him on how to make a more positive impact in the future.
As long as Winston continues to receive guidance from a person as great as Brooks, he will stay on the right path off the field. That’s not to say the 23-year-old isn’t smart enough to remain on the right path on his own, but at such a young age, having someone like Derrick Brooks to turn to is a huge deal.
Another key relationship that Winston has built is one with Tampa resident and WWE superstar Thaddeus Bullard (Bullard is known by the ring name Titus O’Neil). Winston and Bullard have worked together in the past, with the former helping out with the latter’s “Champions of Character Day” in Tampa last summer. This past Thursday, it appeared that the two took in a Tampa Bay Lightning game together. Bullard was honored during the game as a “Community Hero.”
Bullard is widely renowned for his work in the community, which makes him a great person for a young star to hang around. Winston has apparently made a good impression on him, as he publicly stated last December to Tampa’s 620 WDAE that Winston “is a hell of a person.” Winston has been around for a couple of WWE events in Tampa, both last summer and early this year. Bullard evidently gave Winston’s little brother an unforgettable experience, leaving the Tampa Bay quarterback very grateful:
The overall point is, people like Brooks and Bullard are fantastic role models for Winston to be following. There were a lot of question marks about the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner’s character before the 2015 draft. However, he obviously checked out with the Bucs after an extensive process. Despite what many love to say, he’s done nothing but pay off the team’s decision since he was drafted.
He clearly wants to do right, spending a great deal of time doing service in the community. He will continue to so, and especially if the young 23-year-old continues to hang around people like Brooks and Bullard, he will certainly be a positive presence in the Tampa Bay community for years to come.
Fans of Winston’s can only hope he shrugs off the negativity he has received from the media and critics. He can do a whole lot of good for this area, as long as he’s not discouraged by constant criticism. Hanging around with the right people, though, shows that he is prepared to make a big difference in the community.