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Rich Fields

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Is Ryan FitzMagic back as the Buc’s starting quarterback?

I think the question on the minds of every Buc’s fan today should be, “Is  Jameis Winston done at the quarterback position for the Tampa Bay Buc’s and should he be replaced with Ryan Fitzpatrick”? My opinion is a definite… YES.

Yesterday’s ugly game between the Buc’s and the Cincinnati Bengals was even more proof that Jameis does not possess the experience, focus and calmness to deliver at crucial times. It appears he is always looking for the “big play”, and when it doesn’t happen he panics and throws it away.

The question is certainly being asked around the NFL today for sure. MSN.com says “Its past time for the Buc’s to shelve Winston and embrace Fitzmagic”.

We all remember the first three games of the season when Winston was out due to a league suspension for a violation of the NFL’s personal conduct policy relating to his alleged groping of an Uber driver in March, 2016. Fitzpatrick was the Buc’s starter and set the league ablaze with his play. We loved him!

Yet at his first sign of the slightest struggle, Koetter was again all in with Winston. Turns out that was a bad move as Winston has not done him any favors.

Winston threw 4 interceptions in the Bengals game on Sunday, not to mention the other 3 or 4 over thrown balls for incomplete passes resulting in lost downs. I was screaming at the TV for Coach Koetter to put Fitzpatrick in mid way through in the second quarter.

But that change did not come until Jameis had done far too much damage. Koetter finally gave up on Winston and sent Fitzpatrick in with minutes left in the third quarter. By this time the Bucs were down 34-16.

This late change gave Ryan Fitzpatrick basically one quarter to undo the damage and save the day. And he nearly did. Fitzpatrick went to work spinning his “magic” and doing more for the team in one quarter than Jameis did the 3 quarters prior. Ryan finished with 11 of 15 for 194 yards and a passer rating of 154.9 that’s just shy of perfect.

Sadly, there wasn’t enough time for him to pull out the win. So what’s the answer? Its clear to me. Fitzpatrick is the better quarterback. He’s more accurate on every level of the field… short, intermediate, and deep. He doesn’t take the chances Winston takes. He doesn’t throw nearly the number of ill-advised interceptions, and he seems to have a far better understanding of the passing game the Bucs want to run.

When asked if he would be making a change at the QB position at the end of the game on Sunday, Koetter said, “We don’t need to talk about that. Today is not the day I have to decide that. I don’t have any problems making decisions and I’ll make it when the time is right.”

To me the decision is clear. Its time to make Ryan Fitzpatrick the Buccaneer’s starting quarterback, and let him run this team. Any other choice makes no sense, if the goal is to actually win games.

As I write this rant, Coach Koetter must have felt my angst, because as of 2:45 PM Koetter has announced that Ryan Fitzpatrick will start in place of Jameis Winston for the Buc’s in Week 9!

 

 

Rich Fields is a veteran radio broadcaster who is best known for having been the Announcer on the Price is Right. He is also an Emmy Award winning Meteorologist .