It might be a long season for Bucs fans.
If you were ranking the saddest QB competitions in the NFL this year by how much they depress you, I’m pretty sure the Tampa Bay Buccaneers would be at the top of the list. The inspiring group of Baker Mayfield, Kyle Trask and John Wolford are jockeying for the position of Buccaneers signal caller to begin the 2023 NFL season. Tom Brady is off doing God knows what, and new offensive coordinator Dave Canales is left to work with the three of these QBs.
This video from OTAs isn’t encouraging.
Just jaw-dropping, awe-inspiring content by the Bucs QBs. Of course, it is OTAs, and routes on air isn’t exactly what you want to use to judge QBs. It’s May, and this isn’t a sweeping indictment.
However, going into OTAs, this group doesn’t exactly inspire confidence. We have yet to see what Kyle Trask actually looks like in real, regular season football games, and Baker Mayfield had spurts of competent play mired by incompetence in Carolina, and didn’t inspire much hope in Los Angeles. John Wolford, despite being a crucial part of a 2020 playoff victory for the Rams, is a career backup and might have the longest odds of actually starting.
Despite this ambivalence and overall unspectacular QB play, the Bucs still have a very talented roster and play in a division that is also very very uncertain at this point. You could argue that the Bucs have the best receiver group in the NFC South, and the defense should be fully healthy. If they can get the defense firing on all cylinders, it might not take stupendous QB play for the Bucs to win the division.
Or, this goes how most think it’ll go. An aging team mired with uncertainty at the QB position completely bottoms out without a real person at QB and they enter the 2024 NFL Draft QB pool.
Needless to say, the QB competition inspires nothing but sadness, and it would take an extreme optimist to see any of these QBs playing at a high level this season.