Tristan Wirfs called out some of his Tampa Bay Buccaneers teammates for changing after the team won the Super Bowl back in 2020.
It’s been three years since the Tampa Bay Buccaneers won the Super Bowl, but the memory of that season will last forever in the hearts of fans.
For some of the players on that team, the win was an excuse to take their foot off the gas and focus less on being a good teammate. That’s according to Tristan Wirfs, who called out some of his teammates while speaking with the media on Monday.
Wirfs and a handful of others Bucs players stepped to the podium on the first day of voluntary workouts. He talked about the rumors that he might be switching to left tackle this season after the team released Donovan Smith, and also sang praise for new quarterback Baker Mayfield.
Something else Wirfs said stood out, though, for a number of different reasons. It’s no secret that the team’s trajectory has trended down each year after winning Super Bowl 55, and that there’s a bit of an identity crisis going on.
Last year was what felt like rock bottom, as the team entered the season as Tom Brady-led Super Bowl contenders but ended the year with a losing record and a blowout loss in the Wild Card.
Wirfs hasn’t been with the Bucs long but he’s been here long enough to know when something is out of order. He called that out during his time at the podium on Monday, calling the Super Bowl win both a blessing and a curse.
Tristan Wirfs calls out teammates for behavior after Super Bowl 55
It wasn’t the only thing he said, but it stands out as perhaps the most notable thing for a number of different reasons. In talking about the Super Bowl hangover, Wirfs mentioned that he noticed some players stop thinking about the team as a whole and started putting more emphasis on the ‘ME’ in TEAM.
“Winning the Super Bowl was kind of like a blessing and a curse at the same time,” Wirfs said. “I feel like it united some groups of people or some guys, and it kind of made individuals. I feel like it does that everywhere.”
It’s unclear who he’s talking about since he didn’t name them, but it’s not hard to start going down the list and picking out some obvious candidates. Antonio Brown is almost certainly among that group, but it was prevalent enough beyond the obvious candidate to have stuck in Wirfs head.
That’s not what the main takeaway should be. Wirfs calling out teammates is notable because of the leadership he’s showing in doing so. He’s only a third year player but he already feels like a locker room leader and is clearly stepping into that role.
He reinforced that with his follow up comment.
“So we want everyone to be together and everyone to be like, ‘Yeah, we’ve done this. We did that with this group of people in this year; that’s in the past. We’re here now, but we know what it takes,” Wirfs said.
That’s a leader right there, and it’s the type of thing that should jazz Bucs fans up big time. Here’s a guy who is naturally filling a void and potentially putting himself in a position to take the baton from guys like Lavonte David one day.
Wirfs has already been one of the Bucs best players over the course of his career, but it’s stuff like this that suggests he may go on to become one of a franchise great.