Josh Freeman will not be the latest in a line of quarterbacks to receive extensions prior to the start of the 2013 NFL regular season. According to reports, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are going to wait until after the season to discuss a new contract with their starting quarterback and former first-round pick.
Freeman is coming off two down seasons after surprising the football world as a sophomore back in 2010. After throwing 25 touchdowns compared to six interceptions in 2010, Freeman has turned the ball over 46 times over the past two years. That number ties Mark Sanchez for the most in the NFL during over the course of those two years.
Buccaneers general manager Mark Dominik had the following to say about Freeman’s contract situation on Saturday, per JoeBucsFan.com.
I think there’s just a comfort level that everybody understands where Josh Freeman’s going…Let’s focus on this season, and then, we’ll go after the season’s over.
Freeman’s situation is a bit different from what we saw with Tony Romo, Joe Flacco and Matt Ryan earlier in the offseason. All three of these quarterbacks are seen as franchise guys and have had success over a larger period of time than Freeman.
Dominik also went out there and selected former North Carolina State quarterback Mike Glennon in the third round of April’s draft. As you already know, that selection was made as insurance in case Freeman continues to struggle under center.
Depending on how Glennon performs during training camp and in the preseason, Tampa Bay could easily decide that he is its quarterback of the future; not Freeman. While it’s pure conjecture on my part, Freeman’s next deal will heavily depend on the Buccaneers ability to contend for a postseason spot in 2013. They have gone out and brought in key veterans in each of the last two offseasons in order to show that they’re no longer in the process of rebuilding. The additions of Darrelle Revis and Dashon Goldson leads many to believe that Tampa Bay is in win-now mode. Another bad year from Freeman, and it will likely turn the page.
Of course, we could also be looking at a Flacco-type breakout campaign from the veteran quarterback. If that’s the case, Tampa Bay will have a huge decision to make after the 2013 season concludes.
As it is, 2013 will be a make-or-break campaign for the former Kansas State standout.
Vincent Frank is an NFL featured columnist at Bleacher Report.
Vincent is the head sports editor at eDraft, co-host of Draft Sports Radio (which airs every Monday and Wednesday from 3-6 p.m. ET) and a fantasy writer for Pro Football Focus. He’s also the news director here at PFC and co-host of Football Debate Central with Ryan Riddle 8:00-9:30 every Wednesday.