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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Bucs OC Todd Monken vents about/denies a Winston-Koetter “rift”

Florida Football Insiders

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Well, then. Ever since last Sunday morning’s pre-game report by NFL Netowrk’s Ian Rapoport that Bucs QB Jameis Winston was unhappy with head coach Dirk Koetter on a couple of fronts, it’s been interesting trying to determine what the truth is.

Sunday after the Buccaneers 24-21 loss to the Lions, Koetter, then Winston, took turns telling the media that there was no “big problem” with their relationship and Winston specifically, repeatedly denied that the report and denied that he had spread unhappiness to anyone who may have leaked it.

Well, on Friday morning, Buccaneers offensive coordinator Todd Monken spoke at his usual once a week media session and decided to not only “weigh in” on the reported problems, but aggressively, defended both his boss (Koetter) and his QB (Winston).

Here’s a video of the full press conference, which began with opening medium volume rant, and then spent most of the next few minutes answering questions about it:

A key answer in there was “no one in this building has his (Winston’s) back more than Dirk Koetter.”

And obviously, if you watched any of the behind the scenes training camp “Hard Knocks” August series featuring the Bucs on HBO, you saw Koetter go back and forth on the practice field and elsewhere with Winston. And in fairness, he did with other players, especially, going after they and Winston for what he considered simple/mental mistakes.

And Monken, put it all in perspective, “if you don’t care, you don’t argue. If you don’t argue, it doesn’t matter.”

The question still remains whether there really are problems? Winston appeared in front of the media right after Monken Friday and again, not only denied any rift, but also characterized the report as someone (without saying whom) “who’s trying to divide the locker room.”

Winston also brought up the best point/answer, as well. When asked what could put all of this talk and speculation to rest and help the team move forward? He quickly shot back, “You win. That’s easy…you have to win.”

At 4-9 having lost three games in a row, the Buccaneers clearly need some of that in the next three weeks.

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