After Sunday’s loss to the New York Giants, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers made some headlines with their decision to give Jameis Winston the starting nod, again.
UPDATE: O.J. Howard was placed on injured reserve due to ankle and foot injuries. READ MORE.
It was a busy Monday at One Buc Place. Jameis Winston was named the new Tampa Bay Buccaneers starting quarterback, and head coach Dirk Koetter provided updates on a pair of injured players.
Koetter was mum in his press conference on Monday about which quarterback would start this Sunday, but reports surfaced after that Winston would be the choice.
The move wasn’t necessarily a shocking decision. Ryan Fitzpatrick looked against the Giants, tossing three interceptions in an ugly performance. Koetter was forced to turn to Winston in the second half, and the former number one pick delivered.
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Winston did have a few lucky bounces go his way, but he torched New York in the final period of play. He led the Bucs to four consecutive touchdown drives. His 199 yards and two touchdowns made Koetter’s decision for him.
With six games still left to play, Winston can use this opportunity to show the organization that he deserves to start the 2019 campaign as the starting quarterback.
On the injury front, Koetter said that second-year linebacker Kendell Beckwith would miss the 2018 season due to the ankle injury he suffered in a car crash in the offseason. Beckwith returned to practice recently, but he didn’t show enough to be activated in time.
Beckwith had an impressive rookie season in 2017. He showed signs of being the crucial third linebacker in the Bucs rotation. Unfortunately, the injury ended his 2018 well before it even started.
The news is a little more favorable for Howard. He left Sunday’s game after suffering an ankle injury late in the 4th quarter.
“O.J. is still being evaluated,” Koetter said. “They had to get some further tests. That information’s going to have to be sent for a second opinion and we’re probably not going to know that maybe until late tomorrow or Wednesday.”
Koetter mentioned that signs looked good for Howard, so his season may not be over just yet.
Howard has taken a massive step regarding production this season. On the season, Howard has 565 yards, 34 catches and five touchdowns. With a string of meaningless games ahead, leaving Howard on the sidelines may not be a bad idea. There’s no reason to risk a significant injury.