“Verdict Is Still Out”

December 7th, 2023

“Baker, will both you and Todd be back next year?”

Face it. Right now no one knows if Bucs quarterback Baker Mayfield will be back with the team next year. And nobody knows if Todd Bowles will be back with the team next year.

Over at the four-letter, there is a feature on what teams likely will do with their quarterback situations in 2024. Jenna Laine of ESPN types up the uncertainty.

Could the Buccaneers decide to run it back with Baker Mayfield next season, or will they be looking for a more long-term solution?

With a 5-7 record, the verdict is still out — and not only on Mayfield but also on the status of coach Todd Bowles. If Tampa Bay moves on from Bowles this offseason, that will impact the team’s QB plans. Mayfield has limited interceptions (eight picks to 18 passing TDs), he has been a leader in the locker room, and he has been able to make plays outside the pocket. But he hasn’t been able to carry an entire team on his back every week.

If the Buccaneers take a nose dive in this last quarter of the season and are in position to draft a quarterback high come April, it’s something they’ll need to strongly consider.

And this applies to a bunch of players, not just Mayfield. If the Bucs replace Bowles and hire an offensive-minded head coach, Joe’s going to take a wild stab that one stipulation to the new coach would be a promise to bring Mike Evans back.

There are so many questions about the team right now that cannot be answered.

A lot of dominoes will fall into place once Bowles’ position is defined.

65 Responses to ““Verdict Is Still Out””

  1. Nprbuc Says:

    Praying that a new coach is in the cards!

  2. HC Grover Says:

    Atlanta and Green Bay will seal the fates.

  3. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Bring Evans back no matter what.


    replacing TB is a must. retaining Evans and Godwin only makes the team better. Mayfield with a new offensive minded HC could/should provide additional needed leadership to a team needing it. NEW HC and staff will fix many problems that obviously exist behind the scenes. !!

  5. Lord Cornelius Says:

    We need to make the playoffs and look decent doing so IMO for him to stay. If we back in looking like crap and get blown out in the playoffs then I’m ready to move on.

    I feel a lot more confident about not liking the coaching than not liking Mayfield. Just based on gut instinct watching the games. The way they are managed. The decision making on 4th downs and key clock situations /etc. The execution consistently being bad in different ways all the time by so many different players. The lack of accountability. THe lack of an elite defense even though he’s had the horses to do it. All of that stuff.

    Mayfield has played fine given his role in what this team is

  6. stpetebucfan Says:

    The Mayfield haters may not realize it but Baker has revived his career here.

    “has limited interceptions (eight picks to 18 passing TDs), he has been a leader in the locker room, and he has been able to make plays outside the pocket. But he hasn’t been able to carry an entire team on his back every week.”

    I’m a writer so I pay attention words like “carry and ENTIRE team on his back every week.” And so how many QB’s can. The Bucs lost the GOAT a player who could in his prime. Mahomes the top candidate. But does anybody believe Purdy can carry a team with the Bucs talent on his back. Does anybody not believe if Mayfield was starting for the Niners he could be effective.

    Carr’s deal is worth $150 million over four years with guaranteed money through 2024. His contract also includes a no-trade clause, per a league source.
    How is that working out for N.O.? Carr is making twice as much as Baker this season with that scheduled to escalate. Baker was a steal for the Bucs THIS year. He won’t be next year. There’s still Trask and a late run stab in the draft or FA signing for next. I like Baker and believe he’s earned his money but I do not wish to mortgage the future for him ala N.O. with Carr!

    Is the glass half full or half empty? The Bucs have won 2 of their last four…OR they’ve lost 6 of their last 8. They’ve left at least two wins out on the field with bad D. DO NOT THROW THE BABY OUT WITH THE BATHWATER!!!

    Get a new coach and hope next year’s draft is as good as this years crop of picks and UDFA’s.

    Build the team FIRST…to do that get the next coach FIRST.

  7. A Bucs Fan Says:

    Oh St Pete shut up about Baker. He is not good. He’s a back up. Want proof? 12 weeks into the season and Canales said just this past weekend that he hopes Baker learns how to throw to Chris. What awesome QB doesn’t know how to throw to Chris Godwin? A bad one.

  8. Alanbucsfan Says:

    Bowles has 3 years left on his contract – position defined
    Unless the team shows signs of quitting on Bowles, he’ll be back and Mayfield will likely be back as well
    Bucs are not in blow it up mode – they are in a 2-3 year re-tooling mode.
    They are not going to draft a QB in 1st round next year- if that was the plan, they never would’ve signed Mayfield.

  9. NE Fan Says:

    And no one.cares about either of them. Baker could win the Nfc South with another HC but that’s it another one and done. Happy feet panics under pressure.

  10. pmarcello Says:

    Teams tend to fire the coaches not the players. In Cleveland Baker sufferred through a new coach every year for five years. If Baker balls out in the next five games he will be here. If not he will still be sought after by other teams willing to pay the man.

    And there is nothing the trolls on this site can do about it.

  11. Lord Cornelius Says:

    I dunno I just saw Chris Godwin’s wife saying Bowles was lying about Chris Godwin’s injury.

    I don’t really care what happens at this point with the team I want Bowles gone. Godwin is my guy lol

  12. Popcorn Mike Says:

    I don’t think Mayfield is the answer long term and it’s nothing to do with not liking Baker, it’s all about stats and facts not only with Tampa but all the other teams also. With Bowles, it just seems like he’s better at DC than HC. Either way the team is a mess and I am pretty sure the Glazers will make some changes next year. Bowles may be back ( which I doubt unless he beat a team like Jacksonville and really dominate the other few team that they play) but I am sure he will be on a 30 day probation period if there is any chance of him returning

  13. D-Rome Says:

    If Baker throws for more than 4000 yards, throws at least 25 TDs, and completes at least 64% of his passes this season he will probably be back on a contract that is similar to Daniel Jones. That or the Bucs may use the franchise tag. Anything less than that, and the Bucs should move on without a second thought.

    The Bucs went 8-9 with Brady behind a below average offensive line and poor production from the run game. It’s the same issues plaguing this year’s Bucs. I can’t help but wonder how much better Baker’s stats would be if those areas were addressed.

  14. Bucnjim Says:

    My guess is it actually could be both. Buc’s draft a QB but sign Mayfield to a team friendly deal. He may never be the QB to take the team to the Super Bowl but with another offensive lineman or two he can keep us competitive while a rookie develops. Stroud has probably one of the best offensive lines in the league he is able run as well.

  15. Popcorn Mike Says:

    Yet more chaos at one Bucs Place. I see Godwin wife went off on Bowles. Is it Bowles fault or Mayfield just not throwing to Godwin. It’s known that Mayfield is not seeing the field well this year. But I must admit it seems like something serious is going on with the Bucs for Godwins wife to come out and vent. She does have inside info that we Bucs fans don’t have

  16. Jack Sparrow Says:

    Mayfield is not the problem. Put any QB in this Bucs scheme and they will not flourish with this outdated thinking. Bucs needs a new HC that is imaginative, creative and knows how to create schemes on both the defense and offense.

  17. Ha-Ha-Ha Says:

    Ya, he’s not good enough so let him go.
    Like you did with
    Doug Williams,
    Steve Young,
    Trent Dilfer.
    OBTW, these ex Buccaneers QBs were also in a SB
    Neil O’Donnell,
    Brian Griese,
    Chris Chandler,
    Steve Deburg.

    So yup help Baker get to the SB with someone else.

  18. Jack Clark Says:

    Misplaced NE Fan, one thing for sure is that you’ll be back here next year 😂

  19. Since76 Says:

    No Mayfield can’t put a team on his back. That’s painfully obvious. Canales is frustrated that Mayfield can’t get the ball to Godwin. So am I. If they resign Mayfield it means they are going in to season 2 of paying for the Superbowl runs. It means another year of mediocrity. I’ll just watch highlights of the misery and disappointment next year. One year of this is enough.

  20. NE Fan Says:

    Jack Sparrow@ if last season doesn’t prove your point nothing does. Mahomes, Allen, Burrow, Hurts, Hebert and definitely not Purdy could succeed in a Bowles offense. Ha Ha Ha@ look closely at your list other than Steve Young and possibly Williams the rest wouldn’t win in today’s NFL.

  21. WyomingJoe Says:

    I agree with D-Rome. If Baker puts up good numbers he’ll be back whether the Haters like it or not. And he’s not far from achieving those numbers. He should have at least 21 TDs already (3 were absolutely dropped) and throwing for over 4000 yards is within his reach. How much better would his numbers be with a better running game and a little more help from his line? Seems like he’s always in a 3rd down and long situation. I AGREE with everyone else that Godwin has been forgotten, certainly over the last 6 games. Why, who knows? But if the Bucs want to make a run at it the next five games his play is essential.

    We’ll, it’s almost the bewitching hour. Time for the Cult of Kyle to rear their ugly heads, lol.

  22. Defense Rules Says:

    Jenna Laine … ‘If the Buccaneers take a nose dive in this last quarter of the season and are in position to draft a quarterback high come April, it’s something they’ll need to strongly consider.’

    Bucs have 5 games left, with only ONE of them against a team with a worse record than ours. We could possibly get to 7-10, but 6-11 is probably more likely given our injury status AND coaching situation. If I had to guess today what a 6-11 record would get us come draft time, I’d pick #10.

    We’re not gonna get one of the top QB candidates picking #10, but we might be able to draft a pretty good one (since this draft is supposed to be QB-deep). We have mega-needs, but none of a higher priority than QB. So IF there’s a QB left on the board who meets our NEED when we pick, I say pull the trigger.

    That said however, I’m still convinced that this entire coaching staff AND Baker Mayfield won’t be here next season. The Glazers are tolerant, but not THAT tolerant when their business model is threatened. I also want to see, starting right now, what Kyle Trask can do behind center. If he stinks it over the next 3 games (all tough ones against Falcons, Packers & Jaguars), give John Wolford a crack at it for the last 2 games (Saints & Panthers). And I’d be sure to let the rest of this team know that each one of them is playing for their careers as NFL players. No team’s gonna pay them big bucks if they stink like dead fish.

  23. Wild Bill Says:

    It ain’t just Baker. The Bucs have more holes than a Swiss cheese. The defense used to keep the Bucs alive in every game. Not anymore. The offense was weak in Brady’s last season and this year is more of the same. So what are the strengths of the Bucs? A few legimate stars and the rest mostly mediocre. Harsh? Maybe, but true enough. Time to clean house and totally rebuild.

  24. ModHairKen Says:

    Verdict will be in at about 4:20 pm Sunday.

  25. Gustaf Says:

    Baker was brought in to win and save Bowles’ job. We’re llsing. Why would we want him back?

  26. realistic-optimistic Says:

    he has been a leader in the locker room

    Why does the media keep saying this? We haven’t heard a single teammate say this about Baker since we were 2-0. Just say it repeatedly and it’s true, I guess.

    Can’t believe we’re STILL trotting him out as the starter. Blows my mind.

    BTW, 18 TDs to 8 INTs? Since when do we celebrate a 2-1 TD-INT ratio. The goal for good QBs is 3-1. Just keep lowering the bar.

  27. Tb bolts Says:

    5-7 less than 20 ppg

  28. Jack Sparrow Says:

    If Bucs decides to get a hotshot QB in the draft and Todd Blows remains as HC, it will all be the same failure. It’ll either end up like Jay-miss, Mac Jones or Zach Wilson.

  29. Joe Says:

    Bowles has 3 years left on his contract – position defined

    That doesn’t mean squat. If Team Glazer thinks it can make more bread by moving on, they will toss any coach to the curb. Best guesstimate Joe has read is that the Bucs make $15 million a game on ticket sales (not including suite sales).

    So a year of Bowles’ salary is taken care of with one game, maybe two. If Team Glazer thought they can increase revenue by 20 percent with a new coach, Bowles is gone.

    (And if he coaches somewhere next year, the Glazers only need to make up the difference between his new salary and whatever the Glazers are paying him.)

  30. Bosch Says:

    How about a poll? Who would you rather have for starting qb? Carr or Mayfield?

  31. Mike C Says:

    HC grover, please tell us your ohhhh so valuable opinion on what will happen with the Bucs season from here on out, I know I have seen your sage like predictions 427 times before but if you could just post another few hundred so your wisdom can be shared with all the internet……

  32. A Bucs Fan Says:

    @Bosch – Neither.

  33. Dwayne Cone Says:

    Bucs are going up against a QB that isn’t good enough to be on Maholmes Mountain (First Things First). It has Qb’s like DeVito (Giants) and DTR (Browns) on the bottom Tier.

    Falcons should not be able to score a Point based on what is thought of him but don’t be surprised if he protects the ball this time and has a break out game.

    He led an AAC school to 4th in the nations and the College Football Playoffs, finished 8th in Heisman Voting, and has a victory over Notre Dame. Don’t think Caleb got that done. Teams are too quick to give up on young QB’s but his Coach has been willing to risk his job to get him developed.

    Got a feeling that Bucs are going to run into a Buzz saw this weekend and will get it again by another Youngin’ @ Lambeau next week.

    At 5-9 will Bucs still be in it? Win out and get a 4th seed at 8-9? Doubt it.

  34. NE Fan Says:

    Carr for sure and he ain’t great

  35. Bobby Says:

    I don’t see the Bucs nosediving for remainder of season. I see the Bucs going to playoffs. Then getting embarrassed in the playoffs. I see Bowles and staff keeping there jobs unfortunately. I see the Bucs not having a high first round pick. Darn it, The Bucs just had to beat the Panthers this past Sunday huh. Bucs were looking at the 7th overall pick. Now that’s all gone. Any new Incoming head coach would have rather had the 7th overall pick. Anyway, this season feels like the longest season ever by the way. That’s what happens when you watch bad football week in and week out from our Buccaneers. It makes for a long season.

  36. Tye Says:

    Replacing Bowels is a must….
    I don’t know anyone planning to go to the games next season with the history of producing losing teams such as TB!…
    BAD INVESTMENT in time and money, sitting in the hot sun to be frustrated….

  37. Conner50 Says:

    If Tampa decides to bring him back next year should only be a year or 2 years at max. No more than 20 million. He’s not worth giving more hasn’t shown that he’s a franchise qb, regardless gotta get a center and rb.

  38. charles Says:

    todd bowles is an idiot. he needs fired for the bucs to have any chance at winning. the offense has so much talent and so much potential. bucs got one of the best receiving duos in the nfl, a solid te and rb with otton and white. and mayfield has proven he can be the bucs starter, maybe for the next few years. the o line needs to start run blocking and bowles needs fired for this offense to be successful

  39. Chad Says:

    Tell me a quarterback this year that has carried a team on their back this season, give me one.

  40. Beeej Says:

    Repeat, Baker’s numbers thus far.l this year aren’t very different from Mahomes

  41. NE Fan Says:

    Stroud, Mahomes, Allen, Burrow, Hebert, Goff, Hurts, Tua, Minshew, Lamar, Wilson, Love all teams that would have more losses without them. The Bucs could replace Baker with anyone of these guys and a few other back ups like Dobbs etc and have a better record.

  42. Student of the Game Says:

    A Bucs Fan, thank God you don’t get to make any team decisions. You clearly don’t know diddly about football talent. How long did you have to listen to hours of interviews to hear a line you could use? After about the 5th repeat of the same questions coaches/players will say anything to get them to move on. Canales knows Mayfield can throw to Godwin. He also knows there is only so much any QB can do with hands in their face on obvious passing downs. Two great pass catchers can’t help that much when its ALWAYS 2nd down and 9-13 yards and the defense knows it.

  43. SufferingSince76 Says:

    Ha Ha Ha: ha ha ha ha ha!!!

  44. Conner50 Says:

    Beeej Says “Repeat, Bakers numbers thus far this year aren’t very different from mahomes”
    Lmao difference is Mahomes has wons super bowls and is the best qb in the league, when baker is not even close. Stats are great but doesn’t mean Mayfiel is even remotely close to the caliber of qb mahomes is.

  45. Conner50 Says:

    Mayfield would make a great back up quarterback to keep

  46. Student of the Game Says:

    NE Fan, do you say Mahommes has happy feet when the pocket collapses? Or any QB anywhere? News flash, when 300 lb guys are getting ready to smash your 200lb ass in the turf it’s time to get moving somewhere else!

  47. NE Fan Says:

    Connor, Mahomes doesn’t have Evan’s, Godwin, he has Kelce. To be honest most of Bakers stats come from garbage time when D’s are in prevent mode. If not you would have more than 19 pt avg per game.

  48. Student of the Game Says:

    Conner50, surround Mayfield with KCs team and see. You and all Baker haters base your opinions on performance on the worst teams in the league. Carolina. Cleveland when the injury bug hit the line and defense (it’s why he got hurt in the first place), LA same problem as Cleveland. Hasn’t the Tampa Bay slide coincided with injuries on the defense? It’s a team game gentlemen.

  49. NE Fan Says:

    Student@ if you played the game you would know there is a difference from scrambling to save your life and scrambling to make a play. Mahomes>Baker. Put Mahomes on Bucs you have 3 to 4 more W’s. He would find Godwin. Baker on KC and the only way you know who Kelce is would be because he’s dating Swift.

  50. MegaFailure Says:


  51. bagelman Says:

    Trask looked good in preseason especially the final Jets game. Put his ass in and let’s what what we have or don’t have. Baker is not our future.

  52. Duane in Sanford Says:

    For $4 million you get what you pay for in Mayfield. Is there a rookie making less money to play quarterback outperforming Mayfield? Get outta here with the talk of X quarterback could have won 3 to 4 more games. Bowles sank this team when he had Brady, and noone should be surprised that its happenning again. The run game is on life support. Baker likely isnt the guy, but its just plain foolish to hang so much to blame at his feet. Still not going to fix the down year Godwin has had regardless of what he has his wife tell us. This team wins championships when it has a stacked roster and a strong supporting cast. We have none of that. I would not subject any young qb or even Trask to this bull jive. Baker bet on himself and is playing with house money. Let him continue to take it on the chin until this franchise figures it out.

  53. Duane in Sanford Says:

    I also think its odd that noone reached out for some BA insight. I could have sworn he was one of the few coaches that appreciated Baker’s game. Such wasted opportunity, and sad that grown ass men cant reach out and talk to one another because of hard feelings.

  54. Mike S Says:

    Trask gets on the field its game over

  55. firethecannons Says:

    We need a new head coach and I hope we do not wait long, the sooner we get someone new, the sooner he can determine our team needs and get to know the 53 players and coaches and etc we need to move forward w/o todd bowles–he is not the answer going forward

  56. Craig Says:

    A plus 10 on TD/Int ration is very low. The problem isn’t the lack of Interceptions, it is the lack of TDs.

    The only way Hot Toddie and the Wonder Baker are back is if they almost run the table to end 9-8.

    That won’t happen because the anemia of the offense can’t cover for this defense.

    If Baker wins enough to come back the Bucs won’t be able to afford him next season. A QB who can get to the playoffs is worth 20 million, Baker will want closer to 30 million.

    Best bet is still to see what Trask can do (might happen after Desmond Ridder sweeps the series, but I doubt it.)

    If the Bucs get to 10 losses, Trask has a better shot of playing. If he does well, it will probably be the demise of Hot Toddie anyway, but it might keep Godwin here, which might be what the brouhaha is about, his trade value is one of the few things Bucs can bank on.

  57. Mike C Says:

    Great…… NE fan is back

  58. Rod Munch Says:

    The jury isn’t out – they’ve already ruled that Baker is the man — if you’re wanting to go 5-12.

  59. Bring back the lawn chairs Says:

    Replace these 2 cornerbacks and we have a much better record. Those 2 clowns couldn’t guard little Bo peep, or her lost sheep. Mayfield is a solid QB. 18 td’s and 8 ints. That’s solid.

  60. UKBuccaneer Says:

    Upgrade the secondary and o-line and this is a 10-11 win team.

    Keep those the same, bring in Trask or a rookie and you’re looking at 5-7 wins max.

  61. Conner50 Says:

    @Student of the Game
    Put mayfield with KC’s team and you’re still not getting the production like Mahomes is giving. Sit down with those silly ass comments. Another thing I’m not a “baker hater” I think he’s done better than I thought he would do, but he’s not a difference making qb. Especially the caliber of mahomes lmao. He had a better coaching staff and decent oline we would be better. However we should still be scoring more than 19 points per game and utilizing Godwin every week but we’re not. It’s the coach’s and it’s mayfield too like it or not

  62. Mark hardt Says:

    Baker is gone. The Bucs won,t be able to afford him. If Stafford retires he is a Ram.

  63. Weldslinger Says:

    Well again A bucs fan has no clue the literal dumb ass candles said nothing about baker learning to throw to Godwin idiot he said he has to scream better selective hearing and just pure idiots baker don’t have happy feet idiots the whole interior line is trash he has guys in his face before he hits his drop back 80%of the time HELLO INTERIOR PRESSURE IS THE ABY WORST KINDA PRESSURE FOR ANY QB and sorry to tell the clueless most of the throws that are off are because poor route running or he has to throw it a certain way cause these guys can’t separate a lot of you need to learn what a “all 22” is I mean Mike is on pace for his best season ever Godwin has only6 less catches then evens baker leads NFL in deep pass completions best or top 2/3 in third down conversion also top 4/5 in dropped passes CRUCIAL DROPS 6 end zone drops 15 or so on third down his touchdown to int rate is better the some of the so called elites how many drives and huge completions were nullified with penalties offense alone needs 2/3 big time upgrade at online maybe much might make it but these last 5 will decide that but idk a real run Rashad might only be more of passing guy but hard to tell with this HORRIBLE LINEalso he has to be the only qb that lives on 3rd and forever every single series hello need run game need top tier Te unless the young guys stop dropping huge plays definitely need two better wr or a front or Kelly type Evens is really his only sure fire weapon oh and Rashad outta backfield Half this defense needs replaced SORRY TO BUT THE BAKER HATER BUBBLES BALER WILL BE IN PLAYOFFS WILL BE SIGNING LONG TERM FO ISNT AS DUMB AS EVERYONE THINKS THEY AND SORRY AGAIN BOWLES AND CANALES WILL BE BACK THIS IS TODDS FIRST YR ACTUALLY GUYS AND IT WAS WITHOUT MONEY THANK TOM FOR THAT BTW IDIOTS BY END OF THIS SEASON THE HATERS WILL BE BLOWING BAKER HE MAY SEEM TO PLAY CAUTIOUS BECAUSE HE HAS TO THIS TEAM DOESNT HAVE WIGGLE ROOM CAUSE OF LACK OF OFFENSIVE TALENT GUYS CANT SEPARATE “Again learn how to study an all 23 you guys will see why sometime baker is holding the ball CAUSE GUYS ARENT OPEN WERE GOING TO SMOKE ALANTA THIS TEAM IS STARTING TO HIT IT AT THE RIGHT TIME ALSO IDIOTS .we should have 4 more wins but the defense blew 3 ALANTA,Indy,Houston and otten,the other guy blew the forty miner game should have been 28-27 boys and girls this should be Bakers stat line at least right now if it wasn’t for dropped balls alone 69%25td,7 picks or less 4200 guys the rest of this team has let baker down 500 times more between penalties dropped passes terrible blocking, Baker mayfield next yr signs 5yr 180 m ya know why cause unlike Tom with you guys he will sacrifice some money to keep his team competitive MARK MY WORDS FANS PLAYOFFS AND BAKER KNOCKS OFF PHILLY OR IN WILDCARD I BELIVE WERE GONNA MAKE DEEP RUN NOT DEEP DEEP

  64. Mediocre Mayfield Says:

    Weldslinger quit smoking that crack it’s killing your brain

  65. Obvious Says:

    Standards are very low as a buccaneer fan. Mediocre is what they expect and respect…. They are now willing to blame “Chris Godwin” for mayfield’s lack of ability. WOW!

    It’s gross!

    You people are now arguing that mayfield is equal to Mahomes….???


    You blame everybody BUT mayfield. Let me guess, you don’t see where that’s backwards right.

    There IS the difference between being on the ground with chickens and turkeys versus SOARING WITH EAGLES!


    You CAN NOT get through your heads that 200 yards per game and 1 or 2 touchdowns MAXIMUM is FOR SCRUBS!!????

    You are a sad and pathetic bunch of FOOLS! YOU DESERVE the LOUSY that YOU BELIEVE is so great!!!!