Get Out Of Jameis’ Head

April 6th, 2016
jameis 0924

Tread lightly, Coach Koetter.

Joe knows at least one thing that messed up former Buccaneers franchise quarterback Josh Freeman.

Freeman didn’t just light up the NFL with 25 touchdowns and six interceptions — and 10 wins — in 2010, Freeman was the second leading rusher among quarterbacks that season. At 22 years old, he was an all-around terror for opposing defenses.

But that scared the crap out of Raheem Morris, former Bucs rockstar general manager Mark Dominik and then-offensive coordinator Greg Olson. They wanted to preserve Freeman and dial back his running. The team got deep in his head about it, and Joe is confident that helped screw Freeman up before Greg Schiano broke him.

Enter America’s Quarterback, Jameis Winston. He played with his share or recklessness last year, sacrificing his body often — a body significantly smaller than that of the Taco-Bell-fueled Freeman frame of 2010.

Jameis was even throwing lead blocks for Doug Martin.

Joe brings this up today because of Colts coach Chuck Pagano’s public comments about Andrew Luck needing to stop playing like a linebacker and getting pummeled.

Joe gets it, but it’s a dangerous slope when you start coaching the football player out of your most important football player. Sometimes, it’s better to let maturity run its course naturally, and there are plenty of guys who have gotten hurt “playing it safe.” Joe hopes the Bucs’ brass treads lightly with Jameis.

Almost, Joe would prefer to see Jameis consult with an ex-quarterback like Jeff Garcia, who never took the raw desire out of his game but managed to win and stay pretty healthy.

47 Responses to “Get Out Of Jameis’ Head”

  1. The Buc Realist Says:

    Joe thinks that Jfro-6pak not running messed him up???? OMG that is funny!!!! I wish Joe could ask his buddy the pop-star what really went wrong, how much he was fined in 2011, But I think the pop-star will stick to his cover-up and lies!!!! Because Jfro-6pak was always first in and last out huh dominik!!!!!

  2. briandorry55 Says:

    I think it’s a feel thing. Some guys never run and get hurt all the time, some guys hit and do the hitting and never get hurt. Brett Favre took some pretty gnarly hits in his days and pretty much never left the field. Steve McNair turned into a pocket passer and still got hurt all the time. Let the guy play.

  3. salish_seamonster Says:

    Not concerned. Jameis is not JFro. Koetter knows what he’s doing.

  4. 813bucboi Says:

    I have no problem with jw running when the play breaks down…some of those runs won or kept us in the game…the hits that he needs to take less of are those while he’s in the pocket…GO BUCS!!!

  5. IAN B Says:

    that girl Molly and her booger sugar is what messed up JF5

  6. Buccfan37 Says:

    I prefer Winston throw the ball instead of taking hits running, although his unconventional lumbering looking style of running did produce yards and some big plays.

  7. Pick6 Says:

    the difference between jameis and a josh freeman or RG3 is that you get the sense that Jameis would rather throw downfield every time. RG3 has a great arm but was never a heady passer. Freeman seemed scared alot of the time and ran on instinct. Jameis runs when he’s convinced passing won’t do the trick. He will naturally scramble less as he sees defenses better, just like he did in college. He will continue to keep plays alive with movement in the pocket, i hope

  8. Pick6 Says:

    i could do without the lead blocking for sure

  9. Bucsfanman Says:

    I thought JFRO was better when he was mobile, so I agree that maybe the coaching took him off his game. I like the recklessness that Jameis shows sometimes. It’s a willingness to do what it takes. I don’t want to see him get injured but I would work on other aspects of his game and maybe just caution him about the timing of those reckless plays.
    Yeah Pick6, no designed lead blocking!

  10. Hawaiian Buc Says:


    Why don’t you take a comprehension class? Did Joe say that was what messed him up, or did he say one of the things that messed him up? Are you not smart enough to understand the difference, or are you just so full of haterism for Dominik that you just can’t open your mind to anything else? Get over yourself dude. It’s so beyond old. Yes, we get it – you don’t like Dominik or Lovie. Get some new material, because your current material is played out.

  11. The Buc Realist Says:


    you forgot adrian slowborn and that mark alstott cannot block even though he was a Fullback!!! Add that and yes, that is all my “gold” material!!!!!

  12. Pickgrin Says:

    “it’s a dangerous slope when you start coaching the football player out of your most important football player. Sometimes, it’s better to let maturity run its course naturally, and there are plenty of guys who have gotten hurt “playing it safe.” Joe hopes the Bucs’ brass treads lightly with Jameis.”

    Amen Joe – Preach it brother.

    Trying to coach the will to win – the will to get a TD – the will to get a crucial 1st down with his feet if necessary out of Jameis Winston is like trying to coach the protective meanness out of a mama Grizzly Bear.

  13. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    “They wanted to preserve Freeman and dial back his running. The team got deep in his head about it, and Joe is confident that helped screw Freeman up before Greg Schiano broke him.”

    Yep that was part of it – But the key component was his off the field friendship with
    Kellen Winslow Jr. Bad influences can have a terrible effect on the character, development, or behavior of the young mine. Especially for a young mixed kid – still trying to find his identity in this world

  14. LUVMYBUCS Says:

    *young mind

  15. Marquistador Says:

    Wait a minute there Joe(s). If Jeff Garcia played today, he would have sat half of each season under the new concussion protocol. Dude got his bell rung in more games than not. His desire was undeniable, but I don’t want Jameis diving head first in his 30s like wild man Jeff Garcia. I do miss seeing him play though.

  16. Bucsfanman Says:

    LUV- I don’t know the specifics, but I whole-heartily agree that it was the off-field issues that doomed him. It’s a shame, I thought he was going to be THEE GUY.

  17. LUVMYBUCS Says:


    I hear you brotha -I’m still pulling for the young man

  18. Howard Cosell Says:

    So let me get this straight, Joe:
    You Winston to be fearless running the ball AND you think Glennon is an unnecessary luxury, right?

  19. DB55 Says:

    Thanks Joes for trying to keep us busy for the next 22 days. Appreciate you brothers.

  20. Tiny Tim Says:

    @ howard cosell

    Great comment sir!!!! Just makes no sense. BTW..i’m down with jameis doing whatever he has to do to win.

  21. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    Curious minds want to know WTF really happened with Josh Freeman ?

  22. unbelievable Says:

    “I thought JFRO was better when he was mobile”

    ^^ THIS.

    He definitely was. He avoided big hits for the most part, but I remember a game during 2011 or 2012 where he got banged up after scrambling, and he pretty much stopped running after that. Don’t know if it was a coaching decision or his own. And then he completely went down the drain…

    As for Jameis, I like the fire and passion but he’s gotta stop trying to block for Doug Martin. He will get badly injured sooner or later, and it’s not like he’s even throwing good blocks to begin with. Love the passion, but save it for passing or running when you have the ball.

  23. Howard Cosell Says:

    Ian is exactly right.
    I spoke with a prominent Tampa attorney who told the exact same story.
    JFro was actually pulled on Clearwater beach cruising around partying
    with dancers. The cops let him go (twice, apparently).
    This is why Schiano tried to run him off.

  24. mike johnson Says:

    Just let jameis play. He can be taught how to fall and take better care of his body. At some point during his career, he will get hurt. Everybody does. That’s why is called the NFL. Nobody plays or get out of the NFL without some kind of..lifelong injury. That’s why they are paid the big bucks.

  25. The Buc Realist Says:

    There is a huge difference between Jfro-6pak after seeing his first progression is covered, panics and then runs,, to what they want Jameis to look thru several progressions and then decided that running is the only option for positive gain!!!

  26. Buc1987 Says:

    Realist…once again it’s “Mike” Alstott and as a reminder Ronde has no h in it.

  27. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Schiano did not break Freeman, Joe.

    His mental illness and medications did.

  28. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I have no problem with Jameis running. It’s how he runs that scares me. Kid dives head first. He needs to learn how to slide.

    I like him blocking too…but at some point, an opposing player will light him up for it.

  29. Pick6 Says:

    yup, realist. big difference between a QB who would rather run than go to his second or third read and a QB whose mission in life is to pull the trigger downfield but scrambles for yards as a last resort

  30. Love and Warrick Dunn Says:

    “His mental illness and medications did.”

    I would bet money he’s never even tried an ADD drug in his life.

  31. Buc1987 Says:

    LWD..meeeeeeee too.

  32. Maze Says:

    Too funny . Thinking Freedom plummeted to the bottom by not running more is why he started only showing up for a paycheck. Right partying and doing blow had nothing to with it. Gotcha

  33. SOEbuc Says:

    At 6 o’clock in the morning in the offseason Freeman was still awake from being coked up all night. Jameis is showing up at One Buc at this time (not on coke) on his own account to work out. I call that maturing faster. Jameis is a pure winner and is going to do all he can to win in the NFL.

  34. BigHogHaynes Says:

    I love this one Joe: controversy is where I thrive, anyone who believes that Freeman’s alleged drug problem & mental state caused him to fail…..well you have enough ammo to stick to guns but I know there are plenty of players in the league past to present that partied hard with drug issues who were stars, but they didn’t have a coach who didn’t want them on the team. You get benched knowing your the best option for your team to win, and then try to deal with Schiano, train wreak is all that can be expected!!

  35. SOEbuc Says:


    I know a lot of these guys do drugs and party (Greg) hardy. I’ve seen Any Given Sunday. I’m just saying I feel it’s more mature for a young starting QB to do everything he can to get W’s instead of doing drugs

  36. The Buc Realist Says:

    I guess it is just a mystery to BigHogHeinous why Jfro-6pak has been cut 5 times from teams after Coach Schiano!!!!! amazing how jfro-6pak was “done wrong” by so many teams and coaches!!!! Train wrecks indeed!!! and look who was conducting it!!!!!

  37. Bob in Valrico Says:

    I been wanting to say this since I saw the headline but didn’t have time Ray perkins got in Vinnys head and wouldn’t get out.But I really believe Koetter especially has the ability to get in and get out leaving Jameis to think about it and the great thing is that Jameis will do just that.

  38. James Walker Says:

    Playing the game smart and having your game handcuffed are not mutually exclusive unless your last name is Freeman. Schiano did not break him. He did phone interviews acting very strange. Didn’t show up for team pictures, and missed his own youth camp. Consistent tardiness for early events usually means someone is not getting enough sleep for one reason or another.

  39. BucTrooper Says:

    I am glad to see this post. I often thought the same thing. It was right after that great season you never saw Freeman run a boot or a roll out. And for the LIFE of me, 3rd and Inches…. w/ a 6ft-6 QB you can’t run a sneak? I used to count how many 3rd and 1’s were NOT sneaks in a row. They essentially taught Freeman to play scared.

  40. Tampa Tony Says:

    The Freeman mystery will always baffle Buc fans as the media sits of the story or former players are too scared to let us know the real story

    Dude was mentally weak and crashed a full season cus he couldn’t hack it

  41. Dave Says:

    Lighten up “realist”

    It’s “at least one thing” that attributed to Freeman’s decline.

  42. Dave Says:

    As for JW, not worried. He is much stronger mentally. He can take teaching and criticism.

  43. Rod Munch Says:

    I don’t remember Morris putting the reins on Freeman, but I do remember Schiano coming in and strapping knee braces on Freeman and telling him to play like a white QB.

  44. Trubucfan22 Says:

    The unnecessary blocks and stuff are the only thing that he should be coached to hold back on. Running with the ball and taking hits is part of his job. Blocking, not so much.

    Although you are right Joe. Just let Jameis be Jameis. I know everyone wants to protect the QBs, and not let them take hits. But he is a big boy, he needs to do what feels right to him. He needs to follow his instincts, they are what make him such a great prospect.

    Freeman was a handful when he was out of the pocket and running down field. The Bucs would have won more games if he had utilized his running ability more.

    Jameis is the same way. When the heat is on, Jameis trusts himself more than anyone else on the team. That is why he has as many rushing TDs as he had last season. In a tight window in the redzone, he is smart enough to realize his limits and when to pull it down and make a play with his legs. As a rookie I don’t expect Jameis to make every throw every time in tight Windows. And I think Jameis knows when he needs to roll the dice and when not to. I like that. I like that he is constantly analyzing the game and knows every situation and how to handle each one. He is going to be special. and it all comes down to his instincts and his football IQ. He has the street smarts and book smarts of football. A rare combo.

  45. BucTrooper Says:

    How do you play like a “white” QB, Rod? Pull up to the stadium in your Buick and blast Hootie and the Blowfish during pregame?

  46. Bucwylde Says:

    LOL @ BucTrooper Well played sir.

  47. Rick in Fort Myers Says:

    OMG for once I agree with Joe. Yep, best to leave Jamison Winston alone in respect to his being a football player. Unlike some quarterbacks, Winston is obviously a football player who just happens to play quarterback. Hence, the headlong dives into the end zone, the lead blocks he’s willing to throw for Doug Martin and his sandlot substitution for the center on the Pro Bowl’s final play, although I’m still not sure what that was all about. While out of a sense of responsibility to the team, their own jobs and the owners, Dirk Koetter and the rest of Tampa’s offensive coaches need to mention protecting himself to Winston, they need a plan to ensure they don’t overdo it. Otherwise, they might look up one day and find Jameis has traded out with Kwon Alexander and is taking a few snaps at the Mike spot. The man is a football player let him play football.