Noted Baker Mayfield Basher Says Bucs Can Go 9-8 With Him Starting

June 30th, 2023

This put a smile on Joe’s face.

The high priest of the PFF Tribe, aka the Pro Football Focus data outfit some fans consider gospel, was at the pulpit of his podcast this week answering a question about the best-case 2023 season for the Buccaneers.

Sam Monson, despite his long-time distate for the game of Baker Mayfield, believes the Bucs’ ceiling is winning the NFC South with a 9-7 record — with Mayfield at the helm.

Like some Bucs fans, Monson thinks the Bucs will have accomplished nothing if they hit that mark.

“You could convince me that Baker Mayfield can have the kind of season that can get Tampa Bay in that, you know, 9-win range which could win them the NFC South,” Monson said. “I don’t think even after that you would be confident hitching your wagon to Baker Mayfield going forward. Again, not unless he plays at a level that I’m just not anticipating.

“But if that’s considered a successful season for the Bucs. Like, ‘Hey, we have no shot whatsoever of winning a Super Bowl, but we win the division and everybody’s happy. Then cool.’ And that I think is a realistic outcome for them because that division isn’t great.”

Monson added that the Tampa Bay “roster is good enough in the hangover of the Tom Brady era that they still win the division.”

Interestingly, Monson went on to share he’s perplexed by how Team Glazer might define a successful Bucs season. Monson doesn’t seem to think a middle-of-the-pack record does the Bucs much good.

Joe is happy to stand up and say finishing 9-8 and winning the division would be a welcome and significant accomplishment given the Bucs’ salary cap constraints, a new offensive coordinator, a questionable edge rush and a starting quarterback on his fourth team. Joe is confident Team Glazer would love that, too.

Joe will never apologize for desiring a winning record.

The Patriots have played respectable football (25-25) since Tom Brady left and seem poised to have a winning season in 2023. There’s no reason the Bucs can’t transition out of the Brady era successfully without completely sucking.

31 Responses to “Noted Baker Mayfield Basher Says Bucs Can Go 9-8 With Him Starting”

  1. Marine Buc Says:

    Oh boy.

    NFL purgatory – here we come.

    Another lost decade… Oh Death where is my sting?


  2. SufferingSince76 Says:

    It will be nice when the season starts. The continuing back and forth speculation (and the tiresome negativity of certain posters on this site) is starting to wear on me.

  3. 80forBrady Says:

    Twenty years of .500 ball. The Legacy of Toad Bowels, mastermind of mediocrity

  4. Craig Says:

    The plink and plonk offense of Canales will be a tight race with Baker versus Carr of N.O.

    Carr seems to be a master of that and Dennis Allen is a firm believer of that philosophy too.

    Bus need an 11-6 record to go anywhere and that is a stretch for Baker because he starts slow.

  5. Rod Munch Says:

    9-8 would be surprising considering you’re counting on the worst QB in the NFL over the last two years to get that record. But if they can do that, it would save Bowles job.

    However, lets be real, the team is going 5-12 or 6-11. Personally I’d have rather cleaned up the cap, played for the top pick in 2024. Certainly I’d rather start Trask and just see what he has over Mayfield who has shown everyone what he is, which is why he’s been on 4-teams since last March. I honestly do not understand how anyone could possibly be excited about this as all signs point to a train wreck, just a really boring train wreck that no one outside of the hardest core fans are going to care about.

  6. Crickett Baker Says:

    Well, I agree with Joe and Suffering, for sure. There is MUCH too much positive happening with our team to dwell on miserable speculations. Go Bucs (P.S. Maybe Canales is a guy who can develop QBs finally?)

  7. Brandon Says:

    The offense HAS to be better. It couldn’t be much worse. The defense SHOULD be better. This team will win 10 or more games.

  8. Buccos Says:

    How about Raheem Morris’s first season winning 10 games. It should have been 11. The refs called offensive PI on Winslow I think when it was obvious defensive PI and it cost us the playoffs where no one would have wanted to play us because we were dangerous and on a roll. If that could happen that year we could do it again this year. We have the enthusiastic young coach and a couple of young qb’s. We could be Youngry again

  9. Jay Says:

    Ou fan here but u gotta think about coaching and consistency first yr with stefanski he was great should have beat kc in my opinion in divisional round at end of first half he throws a great ball for TD and dude gets hit in the head helmet to helmet clearly on replay and they don’t get the penalty or get the TD and ultimately changes the momentum of the game and they end up losing on a crazy Andy Reid call but u should have ur df ready for that with that back up in there then he comes back out yr 2 with stef and lights KC up in opening game but the defense isn’t good enuff with all the talent they had so they lose again cuz they give up too many points then game 2 he gets shoulder messed up and never the same rest of yr and Carolina was a dumpster fire until wilks took over I think he has lots of potential but needs the right coaching and consistency look at aan Fransisco since shanahan took over playoff team or division champ consistently with average talent at QB throughout all the yrs

  10. Just Leave Trask Alone Says:

    That’s because rationalizing keeping Bowles around us more important than developing a young QB.

    Even though Trask will ultimately out perform Mayfield this season.

  11. BillyBucco Says:

    That is False saying Baker starts slow.
    In 2020 the Browns started 4-1.
    They were then 9-2.
    I’ll take that all day.
    Your narrative doesn’t work, try again.
    It’s easy to look back and guess a negative outcome from your couch.

  12. Just Leave Trask Alone Says:

    Rod is right. Expecting Mayfield to all of a sudden be decent is a logical disconnect.

    There are numerous metrics that project poor performance, but there is this idea that somehow that’s all meaningless because reasons.

    Mayfield won’t make it past 6 games as the starter. Well he shouldn’t. We might see a stubbornness that keeps him under center despite the season being lost. That’s just how things have been going. Is it spite? Incompetence? I’m trying to understand the rationale here. Mayfield was spectacularly bad last year yet he’s being gifted the job in June based on a fluke prime time game that wasn’t reflective of last year’s body of work.

    So the plan, according to what we’ve been told, is the Bucs are feigning a competition. The guy they are planning to give the job in June out of this sham competition is the guy who was cut after 6 INTs and 4 lost fumbles in 6 games, leads all QBs in INTs since he’s been in the league, consistently checks down and doesn’t challenge over 20 yards, went to a new team and put up 170 YPG avg and was ranked dead last last year out of all qualifying starters.

    The reason they don’t want to give the job to the prototype guy they drafted and had a strong preseason last year is he’s inexperienced, despite the incoming new OC saying his strength is he can see the field well and make special throws.

    Someone please make it make sense for me without using abstract nonsense descriptors like moxie.

  13. Just Leave Trask Alone Says:

    Brandon. Just because we want it to be better doesn’t mean it will be.

  14. Joe Says:

    Mayfield won’t make it past 6 games as the starter.

    Then say hello to Caleb Williams.

  15. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    Here’s to 17-0
    Cheep tickets
    50 cent beers too!
    Ah, livin the dream.

  16. Tony Says:

    I had them winning 7 but I think people are just automatically expecting them to pick in the top 5 or 10 now since they’re losing Brady & since he’s gonna be retiring. But many seem to forget the team still has the talent on offense & the D isn’t bad either. Like usual they’re just not being given a chance still.

  17. Hodad Says:

    Wirfs has us winning 12 games. He actually plays the game. Maybe we know nothing, and that’s more than the experts.

  18. kyle Says:

    why tank for a college qb with no nfl experience? might as well roll with baker, clear the salary cap, and rebuild the team.. in 2 or 3 years, we can entice a veteran qb to come play like we did w brady??? it seems like a winning formula?

  19. garro Says:

    I would welcome that record Joe.

    Tanking on the other hand is disdainful and a slap in the face of every Buc player who labored on those 0-26 teams!

    Go Bucs!

  20. Jesse james Says:

    The notion of tanking has always been interesting to me. While I’m sure there have been some players over the years that are ok w it and went w it, im guessing over 98% (yes, purely speculating, no facts behind that number) of players play their asses off w no though of tanking, as in football, when you don’t go all out, you get hurt, and they wanna be paid. I can’t believe players will tank for a better pick. I do believe we’d be better off playing Trask just to see what he has, and if he’s bad, high draft pick here we come. We desperately need a franchise QB, as we’re one of, maybe even the only team, to never have a true franchise QB. I don’t know, I root every week for a win, no matter what. But living w 2 chiefs fans, I wonder what it’d be like to have a true future QB like them. Again, root for the team every week, but if we go something like 8-9, maybe even winning the division, what are the chances they’d do anything in the playoffs? For the future of the team, would it be better to be awful and pick high in the draft? This franchise is truly an odd team to love, but God love them we do. Go Bucs!!!

  21. Defense Rules Says:

    Sounds to me Joe like you and Monson have already anointed Mayfield as the starting QB for this season. That position seems to ASSUME that Licht & Bowles & Canales are all blowing smoke about there being an actual COMPETITION for the starter’s job.

    Beyond that though, suppose for a second that Mayfield does in fact WIN the starter’s position & leads us to a 9-8 season like you indicated. Three things happen, none of them necessarily good:

    1 – Baker is only on a 1-year contract, and will want starter’s money to stay with us. Geno Smith finished 9-8 last season & got a 3-year contract with Seattle for $25 mil per year ($40 mil guaranteed); Mayfield will want at least that much to stay with us. Such a deal; so much for fixing our 2024 salary CAP situation.

    2 – Trask will have sat on the bench for yet another year, and we’ll have no idea how well he might do in actual games. And IF we pay Mayfield at the end of 2023, we’ll never know how good (or bad) Trask MIGHT do, and he’ll surely walk after 2024. Truly another wasted 2nd Rnd pick.

    3 – Bucs will be drafting once again in the middle of the pack, and the top QBs in next year’s draft will be long gone. So IF we can’t re-sign Mayfield or (heaven forbid) we do re-sign him for big bucks and he reverts to ‘his old self’ in 2024, then we’ll have really screwed the pooch and missed out on a top QB candidate.

    Other than that, how’d you like the play Mrs Lincoln?

  22. Glass Half Full Guy Says:

    “The Patriots have played respectable football (25-25) since Tom Brady left and seem poised to have a winning season in 2023. There’s no reason the Bucs can’t transition out of the Brady era successfully without completely sucking”

    Reason #1: Patriots have Belichick, we have Bowles.. lol

    That said, I do think (hope) we post a better record this year and Bowles might have this defense kicking enough arse to cover for some offensive struggles with some turnovers and quick 3-and-outs to shorten the field for our O.

    Sticking with my 10-7 record and another div title.

  23. buccee Says:

    Joe Says: “Then say hello to Caleb Williams.”

    Implying Trask has no chance, says the quarterback guru who cheered for the Bucs to draft Johnny Manziel and Jameis Winston.

  24. Beej Says:

    If you can’t do it in practice, you’re not like to do it in real games

  25. stpetebucfan Says:

    The irony for the Trask fanboys is the more they wail the more it looks like Kyle isn’t the real deal.

    IF Trask was a great as they say he’ll freaking be the starter!!! Why are they so worried if he’s got the goods?

  26. Oneilbuc Says:

    Stpetebuc. Because that means the bucs has ruined another quarterback that they drafted. So what makes you think they will develop Caleb Williams or Drake May next year?? The bucs will more likely ruined those guys as well according to their history drafting quarterbacks. I really hope they draft and develop a quarterback but I will bet against the bucs drafting and developing a quarterback.

  27. stpetebucfan Says:


    I remember you were a Jameis fanboy and I suspect that you feel the Bucs ruined him as well. We’ll simply have to agree to disagree. Fameis had incredible talent from the neck down…above the neck he was a cement head who got into repeated trouble at FSU and his first off season with the Bucs again showed his lack of character. Sadly his cement head carried over to his play and leadership eating W’s and check yo sheets. He’s simply not the brightest bulb in the chandelier.

  28. firethecannons Says:

    Joe Says:
    July 1st, 2023 at 1:38 am
    Mayfield won’t make it past 6 games as the starter.

    Then say hello to Caleb Williams. likely — so good! I look forward to the individual performances, cant wait to see Kancey in this defense and Sirvocea Denis and Diabe look forward to see if Tryon can turn it around. Really think defense will be good.

  29. Keith Henig Says:

    I think it’s going to take 10 wins to take the Division. Baker can’t win that many. Let’s give the ball to Kyle Trask and let’s see what he’s got. Guy might be the next great one…

  30. steele Says:

    Another .500 type season give or take is achievable, given that the weakness of the division (incl.the loser QBs in it). Mayfield only needs to be decent, Rah Rah Canales needs to be something less awful than Leftwich. The question will remain Bowles and the bigger decisions under his watch. Mediocrity is almost guaranteed, so the prediction is mediocrity plus a little bit.

  31. Jonny Says:

    The only basis on which this season may be considered a positive for Glazers will be if we are developing a core of younger players to be the mainstays for this team for the next 5-8 yr period.