6 winners (and 4 losers) for Buccaneers in preseason win over Jets

Which Buccaneers stood out in the win over the Jets, and who might have hurt their chances of earning a roster spot?
Tampa Bay Buccaneers v New York Jets
Tampa Bay Buccaneers v New York Jets / Sarah Stier/GettyImages
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Winner: Kyle Trask

A week after he went 6-for-10 and threw a pick, Kyle Trask looked like a totally different quarterback. He got off to a bit of a rough start against the Jets but he settled in on the aforementioned touchdown drive that ended with a nice throw to Trey Palmer.

Trask also threw a dime to Rakim Jarrett in the fourth quarter. That throw was impressive on its own, but was made even more so when you consider Trask wasn’t even supposed to be playing and had to switch himself back on when John Wolford was forced out of the game with an injury.

While he had some impressive throws, the ones he didn’t make stand out almost as much as the ones he did. Specifically, Trask had a clean sheet against the Jets, not turning the ball over once in 28 passing attempts. He did fumble in the first quarter but it was recovered by the offense and was borderline at best.

Trask didn’t light the world on fire with his performance, but he looked like the guy who was winning Bucs fans over earlier in training camp. No matter if he wins the starting role or not, Trask took a nice step forward on Saturday night and there’s a lot of good stuff for him to keep building on.

Loser: Kyle Trask

This has less to do with Trask’s performance and more to do with circumstance. Trask essentially played the entire game, as he started the first half and them came in to replace John Wolford after just four plays. Despite this, the big takeaway from Saturday was that Baker Mayfield is probably going to be named the starting quarterback and he didn’t have to play a single minute against the Jets.

It’s not hard to read into the fact that Baker suited up for the game but didn’t play, despite the fact that there was an opportunity for him to come in.

Rather than turn to Baker in the second half, the Bucs started Wolford and then turned back to Trask when he got hurt. Valuable preseason minutes were deemed not important to evaluate Mayfield, which suggests a decision has likely already been made and we’re simply at the due diligence stage of the process.

Winner: Baker Mayfield

Nothing is official until it comes out of Todd Bowles mouth at the podium, but Baker Mayfield appears to be the Buccaneers QB1.

And to think he didn’t even have to play on Saturday for that to be the case. Not only did Mayfield not play but Kyle Trask had a good night and the takeaway still was that the quarterback competition feels like it’s over.

Bowles said after the game that he suspects ‘everybody’ will play in the team’s final preseason game, but that doesn’t mean a decision on who the starting quarterback will be won’t happen. Baker can be named the starter and still play in the final preseason game to shake off rust ahead of Week 1, but it’s starting to feel like he won’t be using that game to make a closing argument for why he should be the starter.

For as well as Trask played on Saturday, the decision feels like it’s pretty much been made.

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