Sure, maybe it’s March. Maybe minicamps haven’t even started yet. No matter–new Buccaneers coach Lovie Smith has his mind made up: Josh McCown is his quarterback.
Five months ago I made a series of outrageous predictions about Josh McCown’s resurgence as an NFL quarterback after he stepped in for the injured Jay Cutler in Chicago. McCown started five games for the Bears, completing 66% of his passes, posting an impressively efficient 13-1 TD-INT ratio. On the back of those five starts, the career journeyman hit the free agent market.
Enter the Bucs, who, following a disastrous 4-12 2013 season in which they traded their starting quarterback, threw rookie Mike Glennon to the lions (and Saints and Falcons, oh my!) and had almost all of their players quit on college football coach Greg Schiano, promptly cleaned house by firing both Schiano and GM Mark Dominik.
Smith’s first move has been to sign the 34-year old McCown to a 2-year, $10 million contract and immediately name him the starter.
McCown went 3-2 as the Bears’ starter last year, but his career record currently stands at 16-22. He was drafted by the Cardinals in 2002, and has started 10 games just once in his 11-year NFL career, which was interrupted in 2010 by a brief stint as the quarterback of the Hartford Colonials of the UFL. He’s thrown 50 NFL touchdowns to 45 interceptions, and has a pedestrian 77.5 career passer rating, yet will have a higher base salary than both Andrew Luck and Cam Newton. The Bucs will be his 6th team.
McCown’s one of the great stories of perseverance in the NFL. OA is rooting for him and the Bucs this year–Attaboy Josh!