No-brainer Buccaneers offseason quarterback plan
By Rob Leeds
If the Buccaneers do really see Kyle Trask as a viable option for the future, they need to put their money where their mouth is this offseason.
While the main focus for the Buccaneers over the coming months needs to be on winning a Super Bowl above all else, there are ways for the team to ensure the franchise doesn’t fall off the cliff when Tom Brady retires again too.
The future wasn’t all that bright in Tampa a few months ago when the GOAT called it quits. Fans and pundits can argue all day long that the roster was still good enough to win minus Brady, but ticket sales, win totals, and the obvious eye test can tell any rational individual that Brady is what makes this team go.
Quarterback is the most important position in the NFL. Any other position you can give or take, but you have to roster a good quarterback if you want to be successful in the NFL. For some teams, this means finding a quarterback. For others, it means developing a guy that you already have.
The latter looks like it could happen with the Buccaneers.
Using a second-round pick on Kyle Trask ties the franchise to him in a certain way. Whether the pick was right or wrong, the Bucs are going to see during the preseason and during camp what they actually have.
At least, the coaching staff should do this. Could they instead give a majority of the garbage reps to Blaine Gabbert to develop him for the future? (Can you do that with a guy who has been in the NFL for a decade?)
In reality, there is only one logical path forward for the Bucs if they do want to see what they have in Trask.
Put Gabbert on the damn bench during the preseason. You don’t need to see him play. You have a decade of tape to know what he can do. No one cares what he does in preseason. It doesn’t matter. He is not the future.
Is Trask the future? Who knows, but the Bucs at least need to see for themselves why that answer is yes or no.
Kyle Trask needs reps in a pass-first offense during the preseason. Let him play with the backups in practice and then force him to throw 40 times during the preseason games. Brady isn’t going to play, Gabbert doesn’t need to, and no one needs to ever see Ryan Griffin on the field again.
The offense would look slightly different with Trask’s weaker arm compared to Brady’s, but Byron Leftwich and the Bucs have shown that they can survive in a pass-first, short game offense.
Short to intermediate throws with plenty of motion and opportunities for reads is the only way for Trask to succeed long-term in the NFL. The Bucs need to give him that during the preseason to see him work with his head.
The volume has to be there to see whether or not there is a spark there for the future.
Keeping Trask on ice for another full year is a monumental waste. The Buccaneers have to know who they have and where. Play the kid.
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