By Kirk McEwen

Dear Mike,

Hey man, congratulations! Congratulations on the win in Pittsburgh and for playing the Saints tough last Sunday. That was exciting football and even though the Bucs came out on the short end of things in New Orleans, you showed that you can get the job done. That throw to Vincent Jackson (you KNOW the throw I’m talking about) was spectacular! I mean everybody was talking about the touch you put on that ball. Lovie may not come out and say it, but I will. You’re the quarterback of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. You give the team the best chance to win right now. Should you have been allowed to compete for the job from jump? Yes, but you weren’t and to your credit you didn’t grumble or pout. You kept your head down and kept learning your craft. That’s what a team leader does. I wanted to take this opportunity to lay out a few things that have been on my mind.

I’m pretty sure you realize, it’s probably nothing personal with Lovie, not exactly falling all over himself praising your performance. Coach is a ‘McCown’ guy, and me being a ‘Lovie’ guy… well, you get the idea. The thought on McCown was that maybe he could catch fire late in his career as Rich Gannon and Jim Plunkett, among others, were able to do. You put his numbers last season (13 TD’s to 1 INT) up against yours (19 TD’s to 9 INT’s) and add in his familiarity with Lovie and vice versa and you can begin to see the writing on the wall. Lovie was going to start the season with Josh McCown under center no matter what! But nobody can deny your calm under fire and your skills at the position. Given the chance you’ll probably hang up some pretty impressive numbers before it’s all said and done. My bad for underestimating you, Mike. And that goes for anybody else slow to recognize. You’ve earned the right to quarterback this team. Sooner or later even the head coach will have to admit it.


Follow Kirk @KirkMcEwen