Jameis Winston is one of the most polarizing quarterbacks in the NFL today. He holds numerous records, some good (most consecutive games with 450+ passing yards) and some bad (most interceptions returned for a touchdown in a season). Whenever he had a game with multiple touchdowns, he also had a game with multiple interceptions.
This often occurred during the same game. On the bright side, Winston has shown that if he can get the turnovers under control, he can then become a great quarterback; he is also a young player at only 26 years old. A team with the right coaching may be able to turn him into a star.
#5: Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The team that has been Jameis Winston’s home for the past five seasons. Will they be able to unlock his potential while keeping the turnovers at bay? Winston’s production has increased each year in Tampa Bay’s system, but so have his turnovers. Perhaps Winston only needs more time.
As mentioned earlier, he is still a young player with tons of room to grow. Bruce Arians has made it clear that at times he loved Winston, and hated him at others. This is a normal phenomenon with young players, regardless of experience. Winston has all of the tools to be a great player, and there is a chance that Tampa Bay is not quite ready to give up on their former #1 overall pick.
#4: Los Angeles Chargers
With Philip Rivers on the way out, the Chargers need a quarterback. While they could very easily draft a quarterback with the 6th overall pick in the NFL Draft, they could save that pick and take a shot on the still young Jameis Winston.
If the Chargers sign Winston and use their draft pick to strengthen their offense to assist him, they could be the team to unlock his potential. Depending on the actual market for Winston, they may be able to get him on a cheap deal, which would allow them to use him as a bridge quarterback while they prepare a rookie to take over if they went that route instead.
#3: Chicago Bears
The Bears are in an interesting situation that could ultimately go anywhere. They could ride it out with Mitchell Trubisky for another season, they could move on entirely, or they could bring in competition. Focusing on the latter two statements, Jameis Winston could make an impact.
Assuming the Bears are longer looking to keep Trubisky as a starter, Winston could be an interesting addition. Trubisky struggles to get the ball down the field and into the endzone, but Winston does not. While Trubisky may not throw the number of interceptions that Winston does, he simply is not as effective when it is all said and done.
Another possibility is that Winston is brought in to provide competition and to see if the Bears organization can get a spark out of Trubisky. This would preferably be done with a cheap deal, similar to the situation outlined if the Chargers drafted a rookie and brought in Winston. Either way, Winston would most likely be able to improve the Bears’ quarterback situation.
#2: Indianapolis Colts
With the Colts uncommitted to Jacoby Brissett as their franchise quarterback, they need somebody who they think can fill that role. Enter Jameis Winston. Now, this is all dependent on if the Colts’ coaching staff believes they can be the team to get his turnovers under control. Assuming that the Colts can indeed get the best out of Winston, this pairing could be dangerous.
They already have many pieces in place to have a successful season. With weapons such as T.Y. Hilton and Marlon Mack to go along with one of the best offensive lines in football, spearheaded by Quenton Nelson, Winston certainly would not struggle to find targets on the offensive side of the ball. The biggest uncertainty will be if he can keep the ball out of the defense’s hands.
#1: New England Patriots
If there is any one coaching staff that can turn around Jameis Winston, it is Bill Belichick and the Patriots. With recent news suggesting Tom Brady will test the waters in free agency, there suddenly may be a void in the Patriots’ quarterback room.
Jameis Winston is, for all intents and purposes, an anti-Tom Brady. Winston makes all of the mistakes that Brady virtually never makes. Brady, especially in recent years, has accumulated more wins than statistics while Winston can throw for 5,000 yards and still only win 7 games.
However, Winston’s potential on the Patriots’ roster could see them hardly miss an aging Tom Brady. If the Patriots decide to take a gamble, it could be one of the best moves in recent history, or a complete dumpster-fire. Either way, it would certainly be fun to see.