Let’s start talking ourselves into Jameis Winston on the Bears

Chicago Bears, NFL Free Agency, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jameis Winston may not be back with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after all, so let’s try to talk ourselves in seeing him play for the Chicago Bears in 2020.

Have we seen the last of Jameis Winston in a Tampa Bay Buccaneers uniform?

The former No. 1 overall pick by the Buccaneers in the 2015 NFL Draft out of Florida State will hit unrestricted free agency in a few weeks. While he did throw for 30 touchdown passes for the Buccaneers last season, he also threw for 30 interceptions. He might have been a candidate to be franchise tagged or come back to Tampa Bay on a new deal, but this may no longer be the case.

In Peter King’s Football Morning in America column on Monday for NBC Sports, he doubts Winston will “be a starter on opening day 2020 if he leaves Tampa (which is likely)”. While King struggled to find a team for Winston as an opening day starter, one team that could use him is the Chicago Bears. So let’s talk ourselves into Winston playing for the Monsters of the Midway.

In Winston’s five-year NFL career, he has shown a willingness to throw the ball down the field. He put up historic numbers for a franchise that does not have a proud quarterback history. Winston has the arm strength to succeed in the cold climate that is the AFC North. Plus, he would be a huge upgrade over what the Bears are continuing to trot out under center in Mitchell Trubisky.

Even though Winston and Trubisky have made it to the Pro Bowl before, Trubisky’s inconsistencies in the passing game have held Chicago back from being a Super Bowl contender. Bears head coach Matt Nagy has moved off his former offensive coordinator Mark Helfrich in favor of Bill Lazor, formerly of the Cincinnati Bengals. So with changes to the offense, maybe it’s time to move on?

Coming out of Florida State, the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner compared favorably to Ben Roethlisberger of the Pittsburgh Steelers. Both signal-callers have powerful right arms and aren’t afraid to fit the ball into tight windows. Despite plenty of interceptions, their abilities to improvise and extend plays are why they have been valuable passing commodities in the league for years.

Bears fans feel like they’ve been a quarterback away for a while now, pretty much since Sid Luckman was starring for them in the 1940s. Winston is not a long-term fix at the position, but he would challenge Trubisky for the starting job right away. Though the NFC North is competitive, adding Winston could help Chicago contend for the division crown as early as this fall.

Overall, it can’t be much worse at the quarterback position than what we saw out of Trubisky so far. The Bears have arguably a championship-caliber defense and a savvy offensive-minded head coach. If Winston’s vision, as does his decision-making, he could be a huge get for whoever signs him as a free agent. He doesn’t solve everything, but would fix some issues for the Bears.

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