We all have places we go or things we do to escape from the troubles of every day life. For me, sports has always been a way for me to escape reality. For that moment when I'm debating a coach's game plan or if a new stadium might help the Rays or USF football attendance, I completely forget about the stresses that we all deal with on a daily basis.
My sanctuary can be wherever two people can get together for a discussion like that. My sanctuary can be on my podcast, at a stadium, in a sports bar, or over coffee. My sanctuary can be on the phone with a friend while driving in my car.
Everyone's sanctuary is different. That goes for professional athletes as well.
So, where does a player who has been the target of vicious attacks by the media and the public, whether for his own doing or not, go to escape from it all?
For the newest and most recognizable Tampa Bay Buccaneer, Jameis Winston's sanctuary is on the very field where he has made such a name for himself.
“It’s my passion. I love this game so much – that’s why I work so hard at it," Winston said following his first official practice with the Buccaneers. "I believe that’s why all these players come to work every day to play football: because they love it."
We all know the issues Jameis Winston has been accused of and has caused for himself. The mainstream media has made sure we know more about Winston's faults than his accolades on and off the field. This focus by the mainstream media turned Jameis Winston into one of the biggest villains in college sports over the last few years and one of the most hated collegiate athletes during that time as well.
"That’s why football is my sanctuary," Winston said. "I grew up wanting to be a pro football quarterback and I’m here today and I don’t plan on stopping.”
I've already written about how hard the Bucs will focus their marketing efforts on Winston, to show the positive things Winston does over the next months and years. Whether positive or negative, Winston's escape from his stresses come while on the field playing the game he loves. Winston's success or failure on that field will ultimately lead to where his marketability will fall. Success or failure on that same field will also lead to how long he'll still be able to use that game and that field as his own personal sanctuary.Subscribe to The Commish Online Podcast on iTunes!
Follow Bucs Blitz on twitter: @TBBucsOnScout