The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a starting quarterback for this Sunday’s game against the Chicago Bears.
At least coach Dirk Koetter knows the identity of the starter, but he is deciding to keep it a secret.
after serving a three-game suspension for inappropriately touching a female Uber driver, Jameis Winston reported back to the team on Tuesday, giving the team access to its usual starter.
But Ryan Fitzpatrick started during Winston’s absence and became the first quarterback in NFL history to threw for 400 or more yards in three consecutive games, leaving Koetter in an intriguing dilemma.
Koetter said he has discussed his quarterback plan with Winston and Fitzpatrick but declined to share it with reporters.
“It is great to see Jameis back in the building,” Koetter said during a press conference. “He was here early and working hard. We welcome Jameis back. Glad to have him. Short week … he assured me that he is ready to go.
“We know what we’re going to do, both guys know what we’re going to do. I hope everybody can appreciate that it doesn’t do us any good to tell our opponents what we’re going to do. That will work itself out as the week goes along. We do have a plan and both guys are aware of it.”
Fitzpatrick passed for 411 yards and three touchdowns in Monday night’s 30-27 loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers but was also intercepted three times. He has thrown for 1,230 yards, 11 touchdowns and four interceptions this season.
Meanwhile, Bucs safety Chris Conte was placed on injured reserve (knee).
Conte reinjured his knee against the Steelers. At one point in the game, he was stiff-armed out of the way and to the ground by Pittsburgh tight end Vance McDonald on a 75-yard touchdown play.
Koetter didn’t specify when the injury occurred. Koetter said the team is hopeful Conte can return later this season.
Conte, who has 14 tackles this season, initially injured the knee against the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 2.
The Buccaneers also released cornerback Jeff Richards from the practice squad.
–Field Level Media