Countdown: Top 10 X-factors For 2018 – No. 3

July 23rd, 2018

Only three days until training camp starts at One Buc Palace!! 

That means we’re up to No. 3 on the mighty countdown of the 10 X-factors for your 2018 Buccaneers season.


No. 3 – Jameis Winston

Aaron Rodgers, Matthew Stafford, Russell Wilson, Matt Ryan, Cam Newton, Drew Brees, Carson Wentz, Jared Goff, you could easily make a strong case that all of those NFC quarterbacks are better than Jameis. That’s half the starting QBs in the conference.

And you’ll easily find reasoned NFL analysts who claim Jimmy Garoppolo, undefeated in seven starts, is better than Jameis in many ways. Heck, Redskins quarterback Alex Smith is 69-31-1 as a starter through the last seven seasons. That’s no typo.

So in a quarterback-driven league, it’s a no-brainer that the 2018 fate of the Bucs is very much riding on the back of Jameis. He must emerge successfully from the mediocre class of NFL starters.

Jameis is a good NFL quarterback, but what good is that when most of your opponents have a better one?

What scares Joe is all the endless chatter from Bucs officials about how Jameis’ work ethic has been extraordinary since he entered the NFL. Jameis himself has said his work rate is “unparalleled.” So if Jameis works like no other and possesses his renowned football IQ, then why does he make too many boneheaded mistakes and decisions? Something does not add up.

Regardless, Jameis has all the necessary talent required — and around him — to succeed this season.

And as Joe has written several times, Jameis and his playcaller return for a rare fourth consecutive season together. No other NFC playcaller/QB tandem can claim that level of continuity. (Sean Payton and Mike McCarthy each relinquished that duty for a stretch but then went back to it.)

Jameis’ deep knowledge of the offense must translate to touchdowns this season.

If Jameis wasn’t suspended for the first three games, then he’d be No. 1 on this countdown.

It truly is a make-or-break year for him and the franchise. Outside of former Texans quarterback David Carr, good luck finding a Day 1 NFL starting QB in the modern era who got a fifth season with the same team after missing the playoffs in his first four years.

No. 4 – Rookie Corners 

No. 5 – Jason Pierre-Paul

No. 6 – Todd Monken Impact 

No. 7 – Ronald Jones

No. 8 – Contract Years

No. 9 – Ryan Fitzpatrick

No. 10 – Noah Spence

And just in case you missed Saturday’s series introduction, here are four guys you won’t see on The Countdown and why.

21 Responses to “Countdown: Top 10 X-factors For 2018 – No. 3”

  1. 813bucboi Says:

    #1 X-FACTOR….

    NO EXCUSES!!!!!


  2. Anonymous Says:

    Yet somehow Sam Bradford continues to get paid… this guy have dirt on everyone?

  3. Robert Says:

    can we stop with all the crapola about how good the other qb’s in the division are.

    It makes no difference. I can just see “The Rock” walking up to jdubya…

    “what’s your name son?”

    it’s jam..


    He’s irrelevant until he proves otherwise.

  4. Dapostman Says:

    Winston needs to cut out the fumbles. His INT rate is pretty close to most 3 year QB’s. Koetter could do him a big favor in cutting back on the Air Yards which he is at or near the top. Constantly throwing the ball down field means longer pass protection which means holding the ball longer in the pocket which means greater chance of said fumbles. Jared Goff looked like a dear in the headlights his first season and now he’s a legit QB. The OC must look to put his QB in better situations. I think Koetter knows Winston is extremely talented and maybe that’s why he is always taking shots downfield. Hopefully he adjusts and dials up more intermediate routes and more check downs. Their jobs may depend on it.

  5. Bucsfanman Says:

    I can only assume that JW being #3 on the list means that the pass-rush is #1. Sorry if that’s a spoiler Joe!
    This should be common sense for anyone with an impartial view of Jameis. He CAN and HAS to improve, regardless of defense, ST, or anything else.
    I hope it clicks for him and our entire team.

  6. Jeffbuc Says:

    Watch jameis highlights from week 15 falcons game last season. This guy can be one of the best qbs in the game. He is still young so I think it will all click for him and we can all sit back and enjoy the next 12+ years of great qb play.

  7. D-Rome Says:

    Jameis Winston is not a leader.

  8. SchwiftyBuc Says:

    My how quickly people forgot about Jared Goffs rookie year where he looked like a surefire bust. Before Sean Mcvay came in with an incredibly QB friendly scheme and turned Goff into a legit signal caller.

    One can only wonder how much Jameis would improve in a Mcvay/Pederson type scheme as opposed to Dirk Koetters antiquated offense.

  9. Defense Rules Says:

    @Joe … “So if Jameis works like no other and possesses his renowned football IQ, then why does he make too many boneheaded mistakes and decisions? Something does not add up.” SOMETHING DOES NOT ADD UP? Really Joe? THAT’S what you’re going with? Let’s see … Jameis is someone who’s smart AND works hard, makes some awesome plays yet he does some REALLY dumb things.

    What adds up is Good Jameis, Bad Jameis. We all keep waiting for the Good Jameis to totally wipe out the Bad Jameis, but that’s not gonna happen. Good Jameis is improving IMO (his completion % keeps rising for instance, albeit slowly). Jameis is who he is, and the Bucs are faced with a real dilemma in his case: Is Jameis more of an asset than he is a liability. And there’s only one way for Jameis to answer that for them … WIN.

    The Saints without Brees wouldn’t be nearly as good as they are IMO. Same for the Falcons without Matt Ryan and for the Panthers without Cam Newton. Those 3 teams wouldn’t win as many games IMO without those QBs. All three are difference-makers. Right now the same can’t be said for Jameis … 6-10 (2015), 9-7 (2016) and 5-11 (2017) records aren’t exactly awe-inspiring. No more excuses … It’s time to WIN.

  10. Pete I Says:

    Well he can start by not having his #3 stand for his per game turnovers.

  11. SchwiftyBuc Says:

    Pete he averages 1 turnover per game try again pls.

  12. SchwiftyBuc Says:

    Also you gotta love how the Todd Monken X-factor article is heaps of praise, and this one is basically just crapping all over Jameis.

  13. Lamarcus Says:


    Because the coaches know what they are doing. According to the coaches it’s easy as pitch and catch and they chose to suck. It’s all the players fault. Blahaha

  14. joestang Says:

    get rid of winston, he will never change. it would be a different outlook to the season if we had mariotta instead. we would be talking playoffs instead of another losing year with a disgraced quarterback and he sucks also.

  15. DB55 Says:

    then why does he make too many boneheaded mistakes and decisions?
    Imo the joes are the best Bucs reporters in the land even so joe at times makes mistakes like typos. Now imagine joe typing an article as everyone at jbf hq hurls golf balls at him as he’s typing. Yes, the threat of being beamed may cause additional errors.

    Pressure man, give JW 3-5 sec in the pocket and he’ll carve up any defense. Any!!!

  16. Joe Says:

    Thank you for the kind words DB!

  17. Pickgrin Says:

    Oh ye of little faith…

  18. Robert Says:

    got some brown stuff on your nose there……

  19. Trench War Says:

    I would take Jimmy GQ, or Alex Smith over Winston any day of the week. I would take Rivers, or Stafford over Winston. Hell, I would even consider Blake Bortles

  20. SteveK Says:

    Jameis Winston is the biggest Xfactor of the last 10 years. Do we thrive with a 4th year QB, or do we set ourselves behind the Browns?

  21. firethecannons Says:

    SchwiftyBuc is right
    Different offensive scheme could make a world of difference but
    Jameis will have to be good enough to overcome Koetter this season