Tampa Bay Buccaneer fans were at a crossroads after the 2021 season when Tom Brady announced his retirement. They were unsure of who should be the new quarterback to lead a team that went to the super bowl the year before. Luckily, Brady came out of retirement to play one more year for the Buccaneers pushing Tampa Bay’s looming quarterback problem back one year. Here are three potential quarterbacks that may be under center for the Buccaneers during the 2023 NFL season if Brady retires.
Jimmy Garoppolo has been known as one of the best game-managers in the NFL. After stepping in after the starter Trey Lance was injured, Garoppolo led a talented San Francisco 49ers team to seven wins until he came out for the season himself with a foot injury.
Garoppolo has thrown for 2,437 yards and 16 touchdowns in 2022 and has a very impressive completion percentage of 67.2%. Garoppolo’s high-level accuracy and game-managing skills would certainly fit the bill for a Buccaneer team looking to win now.
While Garoppolo is not a flashy quarterback, he has proven to be extremely reliable and may be the best option for Tampa Bay heading into the 2023 season. He could be a bridge quarterback until the Buccaneers find their next franchise quarterback.
Garoppolo is an effective quarterback when he is supported with good weapons and a good defense. The Buccaneers should still be competitive at both ends of the field next season so Garoppolo should be able to fit right in.
Garoppolo becoming the next Buccaneers quarterback is extremely likely as the Niners will likely want to move on to their first round pick in Trey Lance for their quarterback of the future. There are not too many teams that are in win-now mode, but need a quarterback other than the Buccaneers.
Kyle Trask was the Buccaneers second round draft in the 2021 NFL draft. Since being drafted, Trask has only played in a few preseason games for Tampa Bay and is currently listed as third in the quarterback depth chart.
Trask received a lot of hype coming into the NFL after his senior season at the University of Florida where he threw for 4,283 yards and 43 touchdowns. It has been hard to judge Trask’s potential in the NFL as he has only played in a limited amount of snaps during the preseason and has not had a chance to show what he can really do.
In the 2022 pre-season, Trask threw for 457 passing yards and one touchdown over three games. Trask also threw two interceptions and three fumbles. While the sample size is small, Trask seemed to struggle against backups from other teams which doesn’t inspire confidence in many Buccaneers fans.
Trask is still at the level of a rookie and will take some time to develop before he can be trusted as a starting quarterback for Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers should be in win-now mode and Trask is still a work in progress. While it’s unlikely Trask will be named QB1 in 2023 for the Bucs, he’s still an option who’s on the roster and knows the system well by now.
My final potential quarterback to be under center for the Buccaneers in 2023 is Tyler Huntley. Huntley was an undrafted free-agent in 2020 and is the current second string quarterback on the Baltimore Ravens. Huntley has shown that he has what it takes to be an NFL quarterback after taking over the starting job for the Ravens after Lamar Jackson was injured.
In 2021, Huntley recorded 1,081 passing yards and three touchdowns in only six games. Huntley is also a dual threat quarterback and rushed for 284 yards in the same year. He has also had to start this season when Jackson went down again against the Denver Broncos. Huntley was able to lead the Ravens to a win after Jackson went down against one of the best defenses in the league.
Huntley’s dual threat capabilities would be an asset to any NFL team and it is likely that the Ravens will let him test free-agency after this season. He seems to be the best fit for Tampa Bay as he has already shown what he can do in real NFL games and has proved himself on the field.
I believe that Huntley is the best option for the Buccaneers because his running capabilities can make up for poor play calling and a poor offensive line. Huntley will also be much cheaper compared to premiere free-agent quarterbacks like Garoppolo, which would let Tampa have cap space to fill in other holes in the team.
At worst, Huntley could serve as a cheap bridge quarterback while the Buccaneers find their next franchise quarterback. Due to this, Tyler Huntley is the best option for Tampa Bay to be under center in 2023 and beyond.
The Buccaneers were in a good spot with Tom Brady coming back out of retirement to play for one more year. This gave the Buccaneers time to find the perfect quarterback to lead the team into the future. There are three potential candidates that I think the Buccaneers front-office should consider that may be under center for Tampa Bay during the 2023 NFL season and all of them have their own strengths and weaknesses.
Jimmy Garoppolo is a great quarterback but is the ultimate game manager. Kyle Trask could have a lot of potential but needs more experience. Tyler Huntley is a young quarterback who could bring new energy to the Buccaneers offense. Whichever candidate the Buccaneers choose as their starting quarterback, they will need to work hard this offseason to build chemistry with their teammates so they can be successful in the upcoming season.