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Bruce Arians thinks part of Tampa Bay’s problem was ‘Russian roulette wheel at quarterback’

Per Greg Gauman of the Athletic Tampa Bay, Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians has nothing but respect for former coach Dirk Koetter. The problem wasn’t the coaching, rather the “Russian roulette wheel” at the quarterback position.

Last season when Jameis Winston was out with injury, Ryan Fitzpatrick stepped in and played like an all-pro in his first three weeks. However, when Winston came back, Fitzpatrick began to struggle and Winston regained his starting spot. For the rest of the season, it seemed like it was a week-to-week decision for whom would be under center. It was a mess, and led to the eventual firing of Koetter.

The former coach has moved on and taken a job as the offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Falcons. However, the team still has to deal with their quarterback duo and who they will choose to trust with the starting job moving forward.

Winston threw for 2,992 yards with 19 touchdowns and 14 interceptions last year in nine starts. He had a completion rate of 64.6 percent, and his QBR sat at a 71.8. On the other hand, Fitzpatrick threw for 2,336 yards with 17 touchdowns and 12 interceptions in seven starts. His completion rate was was at 66.7 percent but his QBR was a fairly low, at 64.4.

It’s difficult to decipher who played better overall. However, Winston has the arm and intangibles to be an excellent quarterback if he’s put in the right offensive system. His decision-making is still subpar and he needs to prove that he’ll improve his effort in both on the field and off the field in the film room.

It will be interesting to see how Arians will employ Winston moving forward.

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