Should Bucs Give Jameis Winston One More Season?
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a huge decision to make this offseason, at the game's most important position.
Jameis Winston's rookie contract has expired, which means he's set to become an unrestricted free agent when the new league year begins in March. If the Bucs want to bring him back, they can either sign him to a long-term extension, or use the franchise tag to lock him in for at least the 2020 season.
Former Bucs quarterback Trent Dilfer thinks Tampa Bay should give Winston at least one more year to prove himself (via the Tampa Bay Times):
I think you have to bring him back for Year 2 under Bruce Arians. You’re not going to get anybody better for next year. Who are you going to get? Marcus Mariota?
He’s just a high-ceiling, low-floor guy. If he was a mid-ceiling like I was and low floor, it makes sense (to get rid of him). His good is like what’s really good for other players around the league (better upside). And everybody understands Bruce needs to own some of this.
Dilfer, a former top-10 draft pick himself, believes Winston deserves a second season with head coach Bruce Arians and his complex offensive scheme. He also points out that Tampa Bay's options to replace him on the free agent market could be limited.
The Bucs could target a new quarterback early in the 2020 NFL draft, but Arians might not want to develop a young quarterback while the team is in a more "win now" mentality.
We'll know for sure in a couple of months, but this decision could have a seismic impact on the future direction of the franchise.