Competition For Freeman Doesn’t Add UpJanuary 3rd, 2013
Bucs backup quarterback Dan Orlovsky took a whopping zero percent of practice reps with the first team offense this season. Orlovsky said it himself in a recent interview.
That’s not a sign of a regime that really believes in the benefits of competition at every position.
On Monday, Greg Schiano said he craves competition across his roster, and he didn’t rule it out at quarterback, buy Joe’s not fully buying that at QB. The evidence just isn’t there.
First, Joe, Schiano, and everyone else who understands sports, knows that competition only works if it’s legitimate. Otherwise, it’s not really competition, merely a preschool game of pretend. Also, established, driven and successful professionals don’t need competition to perform.
Schiano and just about everyone associated with the Bucs have talked about the extraordinary work ethic, dedication and hunger of Freeman, so it’s fair to say Freeman doesn’t need competition to push him to work harder. Also, Schiano repeats over and over the benefits of repetition, whether it’s learning plays or the details of the new Bucs culture. Schiano even went on a rant Monday about how repeating every process, from installation of plays to offseason practice routines, is absolutely critical to the Bucs’ success in 2013 and beyond.
So why exactly would a detail guy like Schiano, who treasures every one of his 1440 daily minutes, want to take precious practice time from Freeman so somebody can allegedly compete with him? And what quarterback would the Bucs invest in that has the ability to truly be competition for Freeman?
And why would this QB want to land in Tampa when there are so many teams desperate for a starting quarterback?
Then there’s the unrealistic matter of Schiano or rockstar general manager Mark Dominik having to tell Team Glazer that Freeman will earn $8.5 million in 2013, “but we need to invest in real competition for him.”
Sure, the Bucs could blow a coveted mid-round draft pick on a quarterback in 2013. That’s unlikely. But regardless, that quarterback would not represent authentic competition for Freeman next season.
The most Joe can envision the Bucs doing at quarterback this offseason is bringing in a third veteran quarterback for Freeman to learn from and to possibly oust Orlovsky. Nothing else is realistic given the marketplace.