Peyton and Eli Manning. Aaron Rodgers. Philip Rivers. Tom Brady. Andrew Luck. Those are just a few names of NFL starting quarterbacks with the face of the franchise title for their respective teams. It’s not often that you see another player -- much less a defensive tackle -- as the face of the franchise. But then again, that phrase, much like the term “elite”, is often overused.
For the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, it’s different. Veteran defensive tackle Gerald McCoy has been given the title for his leadership among his teammates and contributions to the community. The Bucs have not had a quarterback to give that title to in quite some time. Some would even argue they never had one.
However, McCoy acknowledges that will soon change. And he recently talked about that on Sirius NFL Radio with Booger McFarland and Zig Fracassi.
“[Jameis Winston] has been doing a great job of being a rookie and letting all the older guys lead,” McCoy said. “And I told him, I said, ‘I’m telling you right now, when that face of the franchise flips to being your title, you will see, it’s tough. But it’s coming because you’re the quarterback. That’s just how it works. So right now just enjoy being a rookie.’”
Yes, Winston is in fact just a rookie. But all the hype, marketing and advertising that revolves around the Buccaneers incorporates Winston in some way. Heck, our readers seem to be attracted more to Winston headlines than anything else. Oh yeah, and ticket sales have climbed since they drafted him.
People want to know what he did at practice, what he said in interviews.That alone speaks volume. He is what is drawing attention to the Buccaneers.
You can say Winston is already the face of the franchise.