Jameis Winston might be in line for one more shot at a beginning job

Jameis Winston

Jameis Winston
Photograph: Getty Photographs

So, Aaron Rodgers duped us all into pondering he was finished with Inexperienced Bay. 4 years, $200 million (supposedly), and one fewer workforce questioning their future on the quarterback place. Denver has their entire scenario discovered as nicely I suppose. Russell Wilson? That’s an enormous get for a workforce in a division with Patrick Mahomes and Justin Herbert. Nonetheless, there are a number of groups that don’t know what they’re going to do.

Will the Texans truly commerce Watson this 12 months? What’s Pittsburgh going to do? What about Carolina? With Rodgers again in Inexperienced Bay, ought to Minnesota commerce away Kirk Cousins? Then there’s Washington, Philadelphia, the New York Giants, Indy, Tampa, blah blah blah blah blah.

So many groups, so few quarterbacks to go round. But, regardless of the plain lack of elite quarterback expertise throughout the league, most NFL rumors focus on groups buying and selling for different groups’ starters. Nearly none take care of precise free agent QBs although. Positive, no workforce severely needs Ryan Fitzpatrick or Andy Dalton to be their franchise quarterback, however there may be somebody, untethered to anyone workforce proper now who not sufficient persons are taking a look at.

Jameis Winston might have solely performed in seven video games final season, but it surely was arguably probably the most profitable season of his profession. Winston put up career-highs in TD proportion (8.7 p.c), INT proportion (1.9 p.c), TD-INT ratio (14-3, or 4.67-to-1), adjusted yards gained per go try (8.2), and passer score (102.8). He did all that whereas throwing to an “elite” receiving corps of Marquez Callaway and Deonte Harris. There have been clearly some considerations along with his lack of yardage (167.1 yards per recreation — lowest of his profession) and completion proportion (59 p.c), however these points had been trivial within the face of what Winston lastly did proper. For years, all individuals might speak about was Winston’s lack of ball safety. Winston was a turnover machine, who was greatest remembered as a meme than precise starting-caliber NFL quarterback. However when Winston lastly figures out learn how to restrict his turnover issue and leads a subpar offense to a 5-2 document, he will get tossed apart with out a second thought? I don’t get it. Remember that a number of groups appear to be excited by 49ers’ quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo as a result of he was in a position to win video games in the proper circumstance.

Very like Winston, Garoppolo brings damage considerations to the desk. The person actually had surgery carried out on his throwing shoulder just lately, however when positioned in an ideal scenario, he can win video games. When given a fantastic receiving corps, an elite outdoors zone run scheme, a fantastic offensive line, a superb offensive-minded head coach, and a fantastic protection, he helped lead the 49ers to 2 NFC Championship Video games and a Tremendous Bowl.

Winston is basically in the identical scenario. He wasn’t good with Tampa Bay, however in his first 12 months because the starter in New Orleans, he proved he was able to profitable video games, even in a division with Tom Brady. Positive, Winston by no means reached the heights Garoppolo did, however he additionally brings far more to the desk when it comes to arm expertise and will seemingly be signed to a less expensive deal.

Is seven video games too small a pattern measurement to evaluate Winston’s success with the Saints on? Possibly, but it surely’s another recreation (and two extra video games began) that Garoppolo had with the 49ers earlier than they supplied him his monumental contract extension. Garoppolo went 5-0 in all equity, and was in a worse scenario when he joined the 49ers than Winston when he joined the Saints, however the similarities are nonetheless there. Winston truly brings extra to the desk although.

The place Garoppolo’s early success with San Francisco can largely be attributed to a scarcity of recreation movie on the previous New England backup in addition to a scarcity of expectations with him becoming a member of one of many worst groups within the league on the time, Winston didn’t have that luxurious. Groups knew precisely what Winston delivered to the desk, but Winston nonetheless blew expectations away along with his improved decision-making and ball safety. It appears his 12 months beneath Drew Brees might have had a outstanding impact on him.

There’ll at all times be the caveat of “Nicely, doesn’t that imply that Winston must be in the proper system to thrive?” Nonetheless, that’s the identical query that Garoppolo, Matthew Stafford, Kirk Cousins, and dozens extra quarterbacks that folks take into account “starting-caliber” have confronted. Why is it solely a problem with Winston? In his closing three seasons with Tampa Bay, Winston completed tenth, ninth, and 14th in Anticipated Factors Added per play (mainly a measure of a quarterback’s explosiveness and effectivity). Fantastic numbers, nothing flashy, however stable. In his lone 12 months because the starter in New Orleans, he completed second.

In fact there are the reason why groups might look to keep away from Winston altogether, the obvious of which being his rape accusation whereas attending Florida State College. Whereas Winston has at all times denied the claims from his accuser, Erica Kinsman, and finally no prices had been pressed on the previous Heisman winner on account of “lack of proof, Kinsman stays adamant that Winston didn’t face correct justice. The lawsuit was settled in 2016 after the case had been “resolved to the satisfaction of the events.”

Would signing Winston with the intent of him changing into a franchise starter be dangerous? Hell sure, but it surely wouldn’t be costly, and would, on the worst, be a one-year rental. Everybody lauded Winstons’ deep ball in Tampa Bay, and now that he has ball safety seemingly beneath management, he might be the mom of all sleeper free brokers. Extra QB-needy groups want to start out giving Winston a glance.

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