Why Buccaneers QB Blaine Gabbert is a terrible fit in 2022
By Rob Leeds
The Buccaneers would be making a huge mistake in letting it ride with Blaine Gabbert in 2022.
Tom Brady has barely been gone for a week, and we are already bordering on pure insanity with the Buccaneers quarterback search.
Jameis Winston is coming back. Aaron Rodgers wants to play in Tampa. Kyle Trask is ready to lead this team to a Super Bowl in year one. Everyone has their own source or reasoning. It’s just like the craziness of the last quarterback search all over again.
This manic energy is the norm in Tampa when a dominant quarterback isn’t here, but there is one idea that masquerades as a cool-headed one that is actually the most ridiculous.
Could Blaine Gabbert be the starter for the Bucs in 2022?
Technically he could, but the better question is; should he? The answer to that is absolutely not.
On paper, Gabbert looks like he could be better than some people think. Some decent passes during the past few years, rare stretches of being on the field, and some time behind Tom Brady seems nice.
Despite this pretty resume, we’re going to have to burst some bubbles. NFL players don’t learn through osmosis. Being in the same room as Brady doesn’t give guys innate talent or athleticism, and Gabbert sure needs help in this area. A career backup doesn’t magically become a starter after ten seasons of painfully mediocre football.
Painfully mediocre. There may not be a better way to describe Gabbert.
A low-floor, low-ceiling player is exactly what you get with Gabbert, almost the exact same thing as Jimmy Garoppolo; another player the Bucs should stay far away from.
Starting Gabbert in 2022 likely only ends in one outcome; disaster. Gabbert and the weapons in Tampa likely end a very difficult 2022 season with something near nine wins, although it could go much lower.
It seems foolhardy to assume the number in the win column could be much higher given the circumstances, but winning with Gabbert is actually counterproductive.
The Bucs have the talent with a good quarterback to be Super Bowl contenders. We just saw this on display for two seasons. With a mediocre quarterback, that ceiling is barely scraping together a playoff-ready team.
Tampa would choose to keep Gabbert because they incorrectly believe this is their best chance of winning rather than using Kyle Trask, but this is where the pain sets in. Winning with Gabbert prolongs the inevitable. The search for a true franchise quarterback goes back for a year in an effort not to waste the talent on the roster, but Gabbert is already a waste of one of the most talented teams in the league.
That next franchise star is either Trask or someone not yet on the team. This player is certainly not Gabbert. If the team carries a mediocre quarterback, we run the risk of getting closer to a Mike Glennon situation where fans will fall asleep in the stands. No one wants to waste a season with all this talent, but starting Gabbert could lead to multiple seasons of waste.
The Bucs should be willing to sell everything to bring an actual contending quarterback to Tampa, but if they miss, it is better to lose with Trask than it is to win with Gabbert. Gabbert pushes the Bucs at least one more season away from being back in contention for a Super Bowl.
Sneaking into the playoffs with Gabbert is not the end goal. Winning rings is, and the Bengals just showed us that all it takes is a quality quarterback to make that happen.
It is better to suffer a losing season and get draft position than it is to sit in the 16-20 range for a few years. This might be a tough pill to swallow, but winning without a clear path to the Super Bowl in what could be the weakest division in the league is denial in practice.
Move on from this idea of Blaine Gabbert. Literally almost every other option is better. Trask may not be ready, but this at least brings the Buccaneers much closer to their next Super Bowl appearance.
Every team should build towards winning Super Bowls. Gabbert isn’t building towards that. In fact, Gabbert probably doesn’t even help this team win in 2022 in the regular season, much less the playoffs.
Do the right thing and stop the madness.
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