June 16th, 2023

Bucs QB Baker Mayfield.

Joe thinks this season may be a crossroads for more than one person with the Bucs.

Head coach Todd Bowles is joined at the hip with quarterback Baker Mayfield. It’s a bit of a stretch to think the Bucs will do damage this year if Mayfield looks more like the quarterback who stunk up the joint in Charlotte than the QB who gave long-suffering Browns fans hope in Cleveland.

If the Bucs have a losing season, well, there could be a housecleaning.

Nick Shook of wasn’t so much looking at Bowles’ future, but indirectly at Mayfield’s. Shook listed players at the crossroads of their careers. Mayfield is on that list.

(List Season started yesterday and continues until the beginning of training camp.)

… The decline has been steep for the No. 1 overall pick of the 2018 draft, a player once billed as the savior of the Cleveland Browns.

… The task won’t be easy, though. He arrives in Florida as the successor to the greatest quarterback of all time. Mayfield will team up with Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Russell Gage and Rachaad White. The weapons, while not quite as deep and diverse as the set with whom Brady won a title, won’t be the issue. It will come down to whether the Buccaneers can protect Mayfield well enough to allow him to make plays. From there, it’s about Mayfield avoiding the same pitfalls — inaccuracy, turnovers — that doomed him in Cleveland and Carolina.

Mayfield still has the same moxie that once convinced former Browns GM John Dorsey to spend the first overall pick on him. He’ll need to prove he’s good enough to be worth a multi-year deal, or else his descent could continue, and Kyle Trask will be there to take the snaps.

There’s that word “moxie” again.

Mayfield has legit weapons in the passing game. Can new Bucs offensive coordinator Dave Canales cobble together a respectable rushing attack to take pressure off Mayfield?

If Mayfield has a good year, Joe is sure he will be the Bucs’ quarterback of the near future. If Mayfield struggles, well, next offseason will be rather interesting.

24 Responses to “Crossroads”

  1. Mort Says:

    They say Moxie because they think it’s rude to call him an arrogant d-bag. So, “Moxie”.

  2. ModHairKen Says:

    There are four people Mayfield has to win over: Angry Red, Evans, Godwin and Wirfs. If he does, with the new scheme, this Offense will hum.

    The new rookie DL along with the new LBs, a revived Tryon, and the bad a$$ safety from Seattle are going to make a huge difference. This team is going to be good. Bowles is going to rise up.

  3. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Shook doesn’t know much. No one used the term moxie until a couple weeks ago when Bowles use it. The guy just simply piggy backed what he got off the other Buc websites including this one. Anyone of us could have regurgitated that info.

  4. ATLBuc Says:

    BTW Bucs signed kicker Blankenship

  5. quarteback whisperer Says:

    Could we be getting Clevelands Jameis Winston? I hope not. I will give Bruce Ariens evaluation a chance. I think if he was the coach, there would not even be a competition. lets see what happens. I think Bowels wants Mayfield also, so Trask is going to have to wait until Mayfield fails before he even gets thought of in my opinion.

  6. Fred McNeil Says:

    Mort, you are sorta right. Baker is either full of moxie or an arrogant d-bag.
    They are very similar, but there’s one distinct difference. A man with moxie wins games. If that same man looses he’s an arrogant douche.
    Same goes if he fails to outplay Kyle Trask.

    Trask, on the other hand seems humble and will let his play do the talking. May the best QB win rather than the best man.

  7. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    t’s rare that you get a QB who’s career rests on his performance….but that’s what we have in Mayfield. One thing for certain….he WILL be motivated.

  8. Dooley Says:

    Part of what bothers me about the prospect of Mayfield being our QB, is that when it comes to critiquing his game there are plenty of areas you can point at and see flaws, but when you listen to the media the first thing they talk about is his attitude. Emotions can take you out of a game more often than keeping you in so to me “moxie” is just rhetorical fluff.

    Not totally ruling out Mayfields’ potential to improve as he’s still young, but there’s no athletic or physical part of Bakers’ game as a player that he can lean on while ironing out his role in this system. Though I will admit, I don’t think Canales offense will put the same type of demand to be QB driven as BA or Dirk Koetters’ offense, which might make up for what Mayfield is lacking from an athletic standpoint imo.

  9. Cian O'Malley Says:

    In Tampa’s pewter and red so grand,
    The Bucs set out to take a stand.
    But with Bowles and Mayfield’s plight,
    A question looms in the fading light,
    Can they conquer with their joint command?

    Joined at the hip, they stride along,
    Seeking victory, proud and strong.
    But if Mayfield falters in dismay,
    Like a quarterback lost in disarray,
    Can the Bucs prove the doubters wrong?

    But fear not, dear Bucs fans, hold tight,
    For Trask shall step into the light.
    With late-game heroics, he’ll rise,
    And rescue the season from demise,
    Guiding the Bucs to a glorious height.

    So let us cheer for the Bucs this day,
    In pewter and red, we find our way.
    For in this Irish-style tale we share,
    May victory grace the Tampa Bay air,
    And lead them to triumph, come what may!

  10. Brandon Jeff Says:

    Just put Mayfield s pair 4 inch platform cleats and we’re good to go!

  11. Rosadog Says:

    Moxie may steal a win here or there… but you got to perform.

    Talk is talk, swagger is swagger…

    Winning games is the measure.

    Turnovers will not be tolerated.

  12. Rosadog Says:

    Moxie means nothing. Tired of hearing about it.

    Either you execute or your don’t.

  13. JD Still Says:

    Yup, in the words of that great little philosopher Yoda, “ There is no try, there is only do or not do”.

  14. Just Leave Trask Alone Says:

    Mort is over the target

  15. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    There’s that word “moxie” again. – Joe

    That was my first thought upon reading that.

    We’re always seeing that word these days. To me, it’s because there is nothing else good worth talking about. ‘Moxie’ is a bottled term, it seems.

  16. HC Grover Says:

    IMO he should try to become the backup long term. He would get rich and no blame. Nobody blamed Gabbert. Mayfield is in position to get paid, Let Trask suffer the Bowles Curse and so forth. Then he could help the new coach and draft pick next year as backup. Best job in the NFL. Buccaneer Backup.

  17. SlyPirate Says:

    NFL REALITY: Most Games are Lost (not won)

    The saying goes, “Whoever wins the turnover battle wins the game.” Looking at the Bucs’ schedule, there are only 3 games the Bucs need to be firing on all cylinders to win (PHI, BUF, SFO).

    The other 14 (winnable) games will come down to turnovers/mistakes. If the Bucs can establish the run, Baker simply needs to not through INTs or fumble for the Bucs win.

  18. BuckeyeBuck Says:

    Mayfield is polarizing because he’s shown enough good to think “maybe” and enough bad to say “definitely not”. Nobody looked good at CAR last year, not even Christian McC. I will say from watching him with CLE that he handles pressure up the middle pretty well, off the edge not so much

  19. Bucnjim Says:

    Mayfield reminds me of buying a scratch off ticket. You buy a $5 ticket and win $20 then you’re like damn it’s not that much. Why didn’t you buy a $50 scratch off well couldn’t afford one. There you have it! We’ve got a $5 scratch off where even if you win it might not be great.

  20. Brandon Says:

    Cian O’Malley –
    As a former English instructor of 13 years, I appreciate your hard work on your poem… but to have a hero that is clearly way behind in the QB battle, I’m afraid your tale is fantasy. Love the work though!

  21. EEK Says:

    the interesting question which may be the most probable possibility is:

    what happens if Baker and the team are average?

    how good does he need to be to get a longer term/new deal?

    how bad does he have to be to move on from him? — easier question (I’d say 7-8 wins or fewer will not be enough to get him a second contract)

  22. Hammerhead Says:

    Wayne Fontes was an outstanding coach for the Detroit Lions. Yet they always finished around .500. They never got the best draft picks because he coached them to well.

    Do the bucs want to be an average team forever at this point?

    The bucs are one of two teams to have the most super bowl wins without a loss.

    Average ain’t getting it.

    Ask a Tampa native that coached the Lions.

  23. Johnny Lee Williams Says:

    Baker Mayfield is a great quarterback he played hurt as all great players will do especially if they’re the leader of the team the Browns establishment couldn’t appreciate that I was sorry to see him leave the Browns but now I can root for him with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers cuz he is the real deal I’d like to see him with the star on his helmet

  24. Johnny Lee Williams Says:

    Baker Mayfield is a great quarterback he played hurt as all great players will do especially if they’re the leader of the team the Browns establishment couldn’t appreciate that I was sorry to see him leave the Browns but now I can root for him with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers cuz he is the real deal