Todd Bowles Implies There’s A Quantifiable Leader In The Starting Quarterback Race

August 9th, 2023

“It’s a cruel league, Kyle.”

Stunning words from head coach Todd Bowles this afternoon.

Bowles hopped on SiriusXM NFL Radio and was asked, of course, about the quarterback battle between Kyle Trask and Baker Mayfield.

Instead of the usual pablum, Bowles implied there’s an in-house stat sheet with a clear leader. He also said the Bucs have a strong feel of their desired quarterback direction.

Here’s the verbatim exchange with co-host Pat Kirwan.

Pat Kirwan: How long can that go on? … Do you feel like, ‘I gotta start focusing on one of them?’ What do they have to do to get more reps than the other guy?

Todd Bowles: We got a good basis of where we are with those two guys. And we just need to see some things Friday as far as running the offense and getting a feel for where they are. We kind of have a good basis and ground basis of what we want to do. But seeing them perform is completely different from game to practice. So we got an idea and we got a good feel. So we’ll kind of let it play out a little bit more. but we have a good stat sheet where we kind of have everything rated of how we see them.

Not long ago Joe asked Bowles if there’s a quarterback scorecard of sorts. Bowels said, “No,” but his full response was more of a roundabout answer that the team wasn’t in that position yet.

Well, it now seems there is a report card sitting in a locked conference room at One Buc Palace.

Joe would be stunned if Baker Mayfield’s name doesn’t have the extra gold star on it.

76 Responses to “Todd Bowles Implies There’s A Quantifiable Leader In The Starting Quarterback Race”

  1. View from 132 Says:

    Why would you be stunned, Joe? Trask is a SECOND ROUND pick. That means the GM and ownership agreed he could be the future leader of the team. He should be able to beat out a journeyman vet. If you replace Baker with a less celebrity QB with the same stats, it would be a huge disappointment if Trask can’t win the job and do well here.

  2. sasquatch Says:

    Well, duh. Of course they are looking at practice stats and daily evaluations. How else are you going to make the decision? One guy may be ahead now, but if the other guy outperforms in the first 2 preseason games, that will probably hold a lot more weight, correcting for situational and personnel variations.

  3. Brandon Says:

    I’m a Buc fan first and foremost and want what’s best for the team but based on what I’ve seen and heard… seems like he’s talking about Trask. That’s IF they are truly talking about protecting the football being most important.

  4. Eric Says:

    I’m stunned you will be stunned lol truth of the matter is Trask is out performing mayfield it’s obvious or Bowles would have already named baker qb1

  5. unbelievable Says:

    Well since they previously said Baker would start preseason game 1 and Trask would start pre-season game 2… To me that implies that Trask is starting to pull into the lead, albeit slightly.

    We’ll see if that’s what actually happens or not.

  6. Bobby M. Says:

    I think Trask has checked the biggest box for Bowles….limit turnovers. I believe Trask has 5 INTs in practice….Mayfield is at 9?. If one was getting all the reps vs splitting them…that’s 18 INTs for Mayfield vs 10 for Trask? Mayfield gets a lot of balls tipped as well….Bowles was here for Winston, he’s seen that style of gun slinger bravado.

  7. WyomingJoe Says:

    Is anyone here counting TDs? I think that connecting with receivers and SCORING POINTS would kinda be more important that practice interceptions. Baker seems to have more TDs and splash plays than Trask so far. Secondly, if Trask starts and stinks (the first four games will be tough) both his career and Bowles’ are finished in Tampa.

  8. Craig Says:

    Maybe he wants to tell Baker he will be second string so he can ask for a trade.

    If not it is because he still believes that experience scores points.

  9. Posey99 Says:

    I’ve been a Trask supporter from day 1, but I would not be mad if Mayfield starts week 1. I’d rather let mayfield take the hits while the Oline figures it out. A game where mayfield throws 2+ INT’s, anyone not a browns fan in the stands will be chanting for trask…may even happen preseason.

  10. Uhhmm Says:

    I love all these commenters drawing conclusions about the quartbacks performance this training camp. With no information to go off of except for nuggets they get from local reporters.

    F%&*ng hilarious.

  11. Posey99 Says:

    “ both his career and Bowles’ are finished in Tampa.”

    Seems kind of backwards, trask would technically be a rookie. Rookie QB’s are given a pass most times.

  12. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Odds are that we will start Mayfield….nothing ventured, nothing gained…..start him and put him on a short leash.
    Give him a shot to save his career…..he may surprise.

  13. WyomingJoe Says:

    I actually think Uhhmm is correct. Who the hell knows what’s going on!?

  14. DS Says:

    Doesn’t matter team will be blown up next yr with a new staff the Arians disciple we will be over

  15. Greg The Truth Says:

    Has anyone mentioned yet how Mayfield may just be getting the start because the Bucs are TRYING to sell him as the starter? He will be at home playing against a Steeler team he is familiar with, and they have nothing to prove. Trask will be up against Aaron Rodgers and the Jets in New York. The Hard Knocks team will be pumped up and stadium will be sold out. If Trask is even CLOSE to looking as good as Mayfield, he should win the job.

  16. Wild Bill Says:

    I think the next 3 preseason games could tilt the decision one way or the other. From what Joe has reported Trask may have slightly better in practice but the next test will start Friday. Trask will get a fair chance in game two. Whoever starts in game three will likely start the real season. So actually the final test will be how each performs in the next three games. Despite who starts each game, it’s likely both qbs will play in every game. I doubt either qb will play all four quarters. The third qb on the roster miight play the 4th quarter in all three games with the rest of the scrubs.

  17. Bored N Norman Says:

    To me this “competition ” is about promoting both as starters, till they don’t have to. Every year a team loses a qb during preseason and having 2 “starters” means you got 1 for trade bait. If Trask was QB1, the Bucs would be beating it on high about their pic being the guy…they aren’t, he isnt.

  18. NCBucfan Says:

    If neither QB can lead us to a division title this year in our crappy division, it’s time to draft one next year. No excuses, our division could be the worst in the league, no cap.

  19. NYbucsfan Says:

    If his name has a gold star that’s why Todd will get fired and you stink at evaluating the QB position. He has been a starter for 5 years what makes you think he will be any different now? It is pretty clear no other NFL teams think he is a starter in this league. Did you see what he is being paid?

  20. Oneilbuc Says:

    In a situation like this when you’re vet quarterback looks worse or equal to your young quarterback you always go with the young guy . Trask has no experience and Baker Mayfield has been starting for 5 years and on his 4th team what more do you guys have to see ?? If Jamies was going through the same thing Baker Mayfield going through y’all will be killing him right now . But for Baker Mayfield I hear is a bunch of excuses.

  21. ATLBuc Says:

    Joe would be stunned if Baker Mayfield’s name doesn’t have the extra gold star on it.

    Apparently, this isn’t the Joe that writes the practice notes. With Mayfield’s batted down passes, interceptions, near interceptions, fumbled snaps and bad decisions it’s quite clear that Trask is the leader. That’s why they want to see him play against the great defense of the Jets in practice next week and in the game. Mayfield is starting this week just to be a crash dummy for the new line. But Trask is clearly their man! Yayyyyy. Go Trask!!!

  22. HC Grover Says:

    Let me guess. ROFL

  23. Bucs Fan Since ‘76 Says:

    Sure sounds like his usual pablum…

  24. Irishmist Says:

    I have a feeling the right side of our O Line will help make the decision for us.

  25. ATLBuc Says:

    OMG!! I just noticed Brady in the picture!! Did he come out of retirement Joe???

  26. ATLBuc Says:

    I guess if someone has a strong point against Mayfield their comment gets moderated.

  27. Give it a Rest, Trask Bridge Says:

    I read that four times and I cannot draw a conclusion one way or another. Other reporters/rumors are saying Mayfield, but this could as easily be Trask.

  28. Mike Johnson Says:

    God please let Trask be ready. Licht made on of his worst decisions acquiring Mayfield. And there were several better options available. Matfield is 2nd string Canadian football material.

  29. Mort Says:

    If they’re close, you go with Trask. He has something Baker doesn’t. Actual real upside. Oh, and he’s thrown like half the picks of Baker.

  30. ATLBuc Says:

    Joe would be stunned if Baker Mayfield’s name doesn’t have the extra gold star on it.

    According to the practice notes Trask is the clear leader. How can you justify saying this?

  31. ATLBuc Says:

    Mike Johnson Says:
    August 9th, 2023 at 7:22 pm
    God please let Trask be ready. Licht made on of his worst decisions acquiring Mayfield.

    Mike. Mayfield costs $4M. $2M if he doesn’t win the starting job. The decision is great when you look at Mayfield as a backup QB, something he would not have agreed to. That’s why we have this qb competition situation. Trask will be the starter.

  32. SlyPirate Says:

    Bowles, like all non-Gators, needs to see how the QBs perform in a game.

    These boys aren’t touched in practice. Like Iron Mike says, “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth.”

  33. sammy Says:

    “Joe would be stunned if Baker Mayfield’s name doesn’t have the extra gold star on it.”

    Based on what? Trask outplaying him? If they have a “quantifiable leader” now I’d say it’s Trask based on what I’ve read.

  34. sammy Says:

    If Joe thinks it’s Trask why did he put up a photo of Trask?

  35. ATLBuc Says:

    SlyPirate Says:
    August 9th, 2023 at 7:35 pm
    Bowles, like all non-Gators, needs to see how the QBs perform in a game.

    We’ve all seen Mayfield play in plenty of games. That’s why we want Trask To start. It has nothing to do with being Gator fans. Mayfield has been in the league since 2018 and has proven that he is a back up quarterback. Trask has the upside. That’s why we want to go with him. We know what Mayfield is going to do Friday. He’s going to get sacked a couple of times because he holds the ball too long and if he plays more than one quarter he’s going to throw an interception, probably to someone who isn’t going to make the team.


















  36. sammy Says:

    OOPS! If Joe thinks it’s MAYFIELD why did he put up a photo of Trask?

  37. Jonzee Says:

    Baker will get the start. Trask throws 10 yrd passes in practice and all the Gator fans cheer that he doesn’t throw picks. Real game speed is where Baker will show that he his head and shoulders above Trask. The fact that Trask was there behind Brady means he should have been the next man up. The fact that he wasn’t tells me alot. Baker should have never really had a shot. He should have been brought in as a backup to Trask

  38. Tvan1011 Says:

    Why does this one Joe fall I’m love with short qbs who can’t play but have “moxie”?

  39. Duane Says:

    JBF is a sh*t disturbing troll

  40. Mike S Says:

    This whole Baker Mayfield thing is ridiculous. The Bucs are a rebuilding team (or should be anyway.) Job one is to find a franchise qb. There is no downside to playing Trask. If he’s good, you have your qb. If he’s bad, he helps you lose games and draft Caleb Willliams or Drake Maye. Playing Baker does nothing except maybe provide some job security to the coach and gm if he can win 8 games.

  41. Beeej Says:

    What WE SEE of practice is a couple dozen paragraphs by Joe about each day. There’s a lot more that’s being looked at we’ve no idea of. If Mayfield is as bad as the Trask fans believe, it should bear itself out Friday night

  42. Joe Says:

    If he’s bad, he helps you lose games and draft Caleb Willliams or Drake Maye.

    You could say the same thing about Mayfield (which is one reason folks think the Bucs are low-key tanking).

    You have to factor in — and very few people do — if the Bucs really are playing for Caleb Williams or Drake Maye, that means Todd Bowles is playing to be a defensive coordinator somewhere else next year (unless Team Glazer has already told him he’s returning in 2024).

    So no, Joe does not believe for a minute Bowles is voluntarily tanking. (Should they? Way different story.)

    Now, here’s another thing to think about: You want Todd Bowles coaching up a first-round draft pick of a quarterback?

    It’s hard for Joe to believe a Bill Parcells disciple would agree to lay down and purposely stack up losses.

  43. Cobraboy Says:

    Wolford ;D

  44. Mike S Says:

    @admin lol Bowles and a first round draft pick 🤣 The coach never wants to tank. That’s why Licht should’ve never signed Baker in the first place. He should’ve brought in someone easier for Trask to beat out like Mitch Trubisky or Andy Dalton or something🤣

  45. Mike S Says:

    @admin Personally if I was a Glazer I would’ve blown the whole thing up this off-season from Licht on down. To avoid exactly what you just described. But that’s another discussion.

  46. Aaron Says:

    I’m interested to see the comments on Friday night and Saturday after the game…I hope our expectations are low for this preseason game…brand new O-line, new QB, new O-coordinator etc…Evans / Godwin won’t see many plays if they play at all…I can’t see a scenario where we’ll be able to run the ball at all…setting up 3rd and long…really should be a boring game…we look bad in these types of games…since Bowles really won’t blitz that much…and our zone sucks…all in all just happy to have football back…but a bad HC, new O-coordinator calling plays for the 1st time, very questionable QBs, O-line is a work in progress, very questionable DE pass rush…rooting to get better as the year goes on and a new beginning for 2024!

    GO bucs!

  47. Orlampa Turd Says:

    Bowles sure does say “kind of” alot.

  48. Duke Says:

    Mayfield is the only choice here….he’s s fan favorite

  49. Toad Bowels Says:

    As one of the Joes is fond of saying “show me in the game”. So far we have had what Joe calls “underwear football” and practice against a team the QBs see every day and have become familiar with the personnel and play calls.

    Let’s give it a couple games against unfamiliar opposition before we announce the successor to the Goat 🐐

  50. Defense Rules Says:

    Speaking of QBs Joe, just watched a 1 hour documentary called ‘Untold Johnny Football’ on Netflix that was fantastic. Dude was really screwed up it sounds like, but he seems to have gotten it together outside of football.

  51. Defense Rules Says:

    Joe … ‘It’s hard for Joe to believe a Bill Parcells disciple would agree to lay down and purposely stack up losses.’

    Todd Bowles would be betraying all the veterans on this team who believe in him. I don’t know him personally, but from everything I’ve read, tanking in any form goes against everything he believes in. No way Jose.

  52. WyomingJoe Says:

    Trask has been in the NFL for three years. Please stop referring to him as a KID! Whoever performs the best in the next two preseason game, plus the practices with the Jets, will be the starter. AND, it looks as though the defense is giving up a LOT of receptions and TDs. Why doesn’t Bowles or the media mention that?

  53. Cobraboy Says:

    Has not Licht stated that Mayfield throws a superior downfield pass (or some words to that effect?)

    That speaks volumes…

  54. There’s a difference Says:

    Training camp is a time to test yourself, to test your teammates when things aren’t exactly kosher. The things that matter above all else is the preseason games, and the jets joint practices.

    If training camp interceptions matter, cooper rush would be starting for Dallas.

    The biggest difference, for those who have connections inside the building – the sentiment remains – “Baker’s focus has been on being a better quarterback where as Kyle, and you can see it on tape, is just going out there to not throw interceptions.”

    Ignore the daily practice reports of this guy threw this pic, this guy did this. Unless you know the context of the drill, the situation, the personnel – it’s moot.

  55. CleanHouse Says:

    First of all, the way parcels treated this franchise, we should never have let one of his “disciples” near the building-

    Second of all Bowles is clueless and he sucks

  56. Mike S Says:

    Someone is pretending to be me…

    That’s flattering.

    And kind of sad.

  57. Mike S Says:

    I didn’t reply to admin either time ITT.

    Honestly does anyone think what some anon posts JBF makes any difference at all who is going to be the starting QB?

  58. Michael Says:

    If you’ve got two quarterbacks you’ve got no quarterback

  59. Stu lynch Says:

    excusee the games trask played in 1 touchdown to 1 pick that is not qb1 quality wtf do I people mean bunch of big mouths

  60. Stu lynch Says:

    all teams have 3 qb’s.micheal says

  61. Larrd Says:

    The quote tells us nothing.

  62. TF Says:

    Mayfield is the #1. Absolutely no suspense here. It’s fake hype. Trask has ZERO minutes under his belt and Mayfield, led his team (Browns) to the playoffs, Heisman Trophy in college etc. People talking about INT stats in “practice” like that is the ENTIRE determining factor. The fact Mayfield has like 3 or 4 more picks in “practice” during scrimmage going 3/4 speed most of the time means SQUAT. That’s one tiny aspect of the position. Trask is getting reps because it’s do or die time for him and the Bucs have NO IDEA what they got with the kid. He had 2 redshirt years and now it’s time to see what he can do. But he might as well be a rookie. Mayfield is #1 until about week 5 or 6 when the wheels come off and he implodes…. OR he gets a confidence with a new offense and takes advantage of the TON of weapons he has to throw the ball to and he remembers what it’s like to be a winner. His choice.

  63. Who Says Says Can't Say Says:

    They’ll ask Bowles and whomever he picks, they’ll start the opposite.

  64. Steven007 Says:

    Michael, every team has two quarterbacks. Usually three. I think that’s the most tired cliche I’ve ever heard. So when the 49ers had Montana and Young they really had no quarterbacks? And no, I’m obviously not comparing those two versus our two but the fact remains.

  65. Dwayne Cone Says:

    Baker likes the chunk plays downfield. From what I read that is where Baker has an edge. By time he looks away the safety and goes to the deep route to find it covered the timing on your next read is off and he’ll end up dumping it to the back for no gain.
    Trask is getting a Rep for throwing to his check downs and not taking the shots downfield. I’ve seen Trask throw downfield and there’s no problem there. By his own admission he is worried about and working on his checks and playing clean. If he sees a shorter route that’s gonna get 8 yards he’s taking it. Keep moving the chains. He’ll take his shots when the defense adjusts to the underneath stuff. Mike single covered? He’s gonna take a shot. If there is time.
    He watched Brady up close in 2022 have to get rid of the ball fast. Real fast.
    If he has to he will be prepared for it.
    You can keep all the moxie and the rah rah head butts.
    Give me the quiet guy with his eyes wide open and always working to get better.

  66. Trask To The Future Says:

    TRASK = Higher upside, 2024 season left on a rookie deal, and the most untapped potential and needs to play to get NFL experience.

    MAYFIELD = Very little upside. If he plays “average” this season but not great, he’ll command a $15M to $20M/year contract for 2024 or you let the go walk and once again start all over at the QB position.

    Only the worst coaching staff/management in the world would make Mayfield the starter.

  67. steele Says:

    If they are using stat sheets to decide, both QBs have been unimpressive, and neither one has gained any clear advantage.

    You better hope they are not just looking at stats, and that Rah Rah Canales the QB whisperer can somehow work magic with one or both of these guys, and that there are INtangibles that will show up in real games.

  68. garro Says:

    Nowhere does it tell me anything quantifiable.
    Just that the at Bucs HQ is keeping stats on the QBs which any coach worth a flip would be doing anyway. I have been over all that has been posted in Tampa about camp practices. National media can not be trusted.

    Nothing quantifiable but it appears to me that Trask may have a narrow lead. He seems to me to have made far fewer mistakes at the very least. He has without doubt protected the football better than Mayfield. I really don’t see from reading that he has shown any glaring weakness.

  69. sammy Says:

    garro Says: “It appears to me that Trask may have a narrow lead.”

    I went over Joe’s camp notes and agree.

    Add the fact that Mayfield is likely gone in 2024 whether he plays poorly or great, there is nothing to gain by starting Mayfield in 2023. We sure as hell are not winning a Super Bowl! There simply is no TEAM UPSIDE with Mayfield.

    Nor is there a BOWLES UPSIDE with Mayfield as regardless of the quarterback, it would look bad for the Glazers to not give BOWLES at least a SECOND SEASON WITH HIS OWN COACHING STAFF -> 2024.

  70. John Dixon Says:

    More whining about Trask and being a second round pick. Anyone want to guess how many 1st, 2nd and 3rd round pick QBs are not or never have been good enough to be starters? Trask is not better than Baker right now and may never be. Stop whining.

  71. Oneilbuc Says:

    John Dixon. Baker Mayfield is trash and so far in camp Trask has been better than him it’s just facts. Just remember this Baker Mayfield is on his 4th team in 6 years lol 🤣🤣!! If he’s that good Cleveland would have kept him or Carolina or the Rams. If Baker Mayfield starts and I believe he will it won’t be because he earned it or because he the better quarterback it will be only to try and sale tickets.

  72. Steelers fan Says:

    Trask has DESTROYED Baker in every way in camp its not close if you know football. The only way Baker has beat Trask is with his ‘Moxie’ and thats just BS so now Trask will beat him in the preseason games aswell..BOOK IT!

  73. Mike Says:

    Baker is hot and cold while Trask is Steady Eddie. I don’t think we want another Jameis type where we get 5,000 yards and 30 picks, so I would guess they would lean more toward Trask at this point.

  74. Jp3 Says:

    And take a listen to Kyle in the video of the team posted of the quarterbacks at practice all that cornerback is out there going to run over now that’s Moxie for you

  75. Daniel Dream Says:

    Respond to view from 32:
    “2nd round pick”?!? Big deal! Mayfield was the first pick in the draft. Unlike Trask, Baker was good enough to play right away. People also forget the only season he ever had a head coach and offensive coordinator, he took the lowly Browns to the playoffs. I repeat- BAKER MAYFIELD TOOK THE PATHETIC BROWNS TO THE PLAYOFFS. Based on that and that alone, you’d have to assume he’s an all-time great QB.

  76. John Says:

    Three and out limits interceptions.
    Why is everyone focused on practice interceptions?
    QBs who punt, and put his defense on the field, are not good QBs.
    Who is making plays and moving the chains?