Skip to main content

Dirk Koetter 'very concerned' with Jameis Winston

The Buccaneers are hoping they don't have a serious problem with quarterback Jameis Winston.

"Very (concerned)," Bucs coach Dirk Koetter told the Tampa Bay Times on Sunday following his team's 27-7 loss to the Denver Broncos. When asked how worried he is about his second-year quarterback, Koetter replied "I'm very concerned. ...

"He's not regressing, but we've got to take care of the football. I mean, we've got to take care of the football. We can't turn it over three times in a half. We just can't do that."

Winston tossed two more picks on Sunday, bringing his season total to eight in four games. While the Broncos could have made it through without Aqib Talib's pair of interceptions, it was enough to bury a Tampa team that is struggling to get out of a mucky, three-way tie for second place in the NFC South.

Winston currently has the second-most interceptions in football (thanks, Ryan Fitzpatrick). He's thrown two more picks than serial turnover-prone passers like Blake Bortles and one more than his 2015 total through four games.

Given the talent level on the roster, Tampa Bay's game against Carolina (1-3) next week is approaching must-win status. The Panthers theoretically have the kind of roster that can rebound from a poor start and make the playoffs. The Bucs need something in the bank before their bye week, especially with games against the Falcons, Chiefs, Seahawks and Cowboys all coming down the pike.

This is a unique problem for the Buccaneers because they specifically promoted Koetter in order to aid in Winston's development. In a lot of ways, Winston is struggling like 2015 draft counterpart Marcus Mariota. Both saw their head coaches get fired in favor of their offensive coordinators and both have admittedly tried to do too much within the offense this year. Maybe that is a reflection of our own expectations when it comes to young quarterbacks, or maybe it says something about placing too much responsibility in one person's hands too early.

Mariota at least has a running game to write home about. At the moment, Tampa running back Doug Martin (hamstring) is still recovering. Winston needs to figure this one out on his own.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.

Related Content