It’s now time to finally say this is the year we find out if Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston is the future.
Heading into year five, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston will be tasked with not only leading this new look Bucs team under a completely new coaching staff but also playing for a new contract. Winston is in the final year of his 5 year rookie contract and the first under new Head Coach Bruce Arians.
Although Winston has shown signs of improvement, he has been very inconsistent. We have seen three multiple interception games from him (four in one game), as well as multiple four touchdown games. Week to week it has been extremely hard to judge which Jameis might show up. One thing is certain: if he wants to continue to be the franchise quarterback here in Tampa he needs a big 2019-2020 season.
Going into last year it was not certain if Jameis would receive an extension or not. With a looming three game suspension from an Uber incident that occurred in March of 2016 and the uncertainty of the future for the then head coach Dirk Koetter, signing Winston did not seem to be the main focus of the organization in 2018.
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That all changes heading into 2019; when the Buccaneers announced the hiring of head coach Bruce Arians my first thought was if Winston cannot succeed under Arians then it is time to move on. Arians has a proven track record helping to develop quarterbacks Peyton Manning, current Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, and current Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck to name a few. If anyone is going to right the ship that is Winston it is Bruce Arians.
Winston is a risk-taker, he will squeeze balls in tight windows, hold onto the ball in the pocket, and he is going to make mistakes; limiting those mistakes is what Arians wants him to do. Getting Jameis to understand when it is time to “give up” on a play will be a tough task, as well as understanding the pressure of the game does not fully rest on his brave shoulders.
Last year had its fair share of distractions: a suspension to start the year and the great play of backup quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick, but coming into this year all the pressure is on number three. If he and Arians gel we could be in for something special. You don’t get many chances in the NFL and the clock is ticking for Jameis, it’s now or never.