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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs begin camp with QB Ryan Fitzpatrick working with first team

Florida Football Insiders



Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

One of the big questions surrounding Buccaneers QB Jameis Winston and his upcoming three game suspension is how the team will handle the sharing of duties/first team reps, etc. in camp and the preseason? Well, with the understanding that it’s very early in the process, we have an answer.

Veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick began the day working with the first team, first and it stayed that way for most of the Bucs first workout.

Fitzpatrick will be 36 in November and this is his 14th season. He did go 2-1 as a starter for the injured Winston in 2017. And, it’s completely understandable that coach Dirk Koetter and the offense, again at the beginning, want him out there.

Now, we wrote earlier this summer that they may want “the other Ryan,” third string reserve Ryan Griffin, to emerge in this training camp and see significant playing time in August during the preseason. That still remains to unfold.

As for Winston, as the practice wore on, he worked mostly with the second team offensive unit:

It’s obviously an awkward situation for all involved, but specifically for the former #1 overall pick, who has been the face of the Buccaneers franchise for his three seasons.

However, the reality on the field is that Winston won’t be available come September 9th, when Tampa Bay opens in New Orleans.

After the Bucs first practice Koetter told the media that Winston had addressed the team on Wednesday and had apologized for putting everyone in the situation. Here were some of his comments:

When asked whether Winston was still a leader on the team, Koetter replied, “I think you have to have lot of leaders.”

Clearly, Fitzpatrick will have to be one of those now, too.

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