Ryan Fitzpatrick set to start at least three games for the 11th straight year

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Buccaneers backup quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick is no one’s idea of a star quarterback. But with his longevity and consistency, he’s putting himself in some fairly rare company.

Fitzpatrick is slated to start the first three games of this season while Jameis Winston is suspended. Fitzpatrick also started three games last year while Winston was injured. And Fitzpatrick has started at least three games every year since 2008.

If Fitzpatrick does start three games this year, and all the other quarterbacks who are expected to be starters do as well, then Fitzpatrick will be one of just eight quarterbacks to start at least three games every year from 2008 to 2018. The other seven are Drew Brees, Joe Flacco, Eli Manning, Philip Rivers, Aaron Rodgers, Ben Roethlisberger and Matt Ryan.

Fitzpatrick is the least-accomplished of the quarterbacks on that list, but he deserves credit for how long he’s managed to last in the league.

43 responses to “Ryan Fitzpatrick set to start at least three games for the 11th straight year

  1. It’s interesting but I’d like to know of those seasons how many times did Fitzpatrick open the season as starter? He’s at least recently been smart about picking teams without a starting qb firmly entrenched. The other 7 have been franchise qbs Fitz has been a high end back up.

  2. Me thinks Ryan lad may be starting a lot more than three games this season…

  3. More by chance than anything. Brings to mind Matt Cassel who has had at least one start in each of the last 10yrs too! And done so the same way – i.e. being a very average QB who got to play the last 10yrs because he was a good guy and never the weakest link on a series of average-at-best teams or ones whose starter was out and he was the backup.

    Another similar example is Hoyer – who in 9yrs in the NFL has had starts in each of the last 6 years – and who only didn’t start in any of his first 3yrs because he was behind a healthy Brady. But probably the biggest and most surprising example of the group is Eli Manning, whose career passer rating of 83.4 is IDENTICAL to Hoyer!!

  4. Considering Fitzpatrick is at least as good, if not better than Winston, he should be starting somewhere in the league. The guy hasnt managed to stay in the league that long by being terrible.

  5. Everything about Fitzpatrick’s measurables are average. Size, arm, strength and mobility nothing special. His brains and savvy are equal to most starters but generally speaking he folds like a cheap suit under pressure. Still one of the better backups in the NFL.

  6. Steelers benefit again from a starter not available at QB because they have TB there Monday night week 3. I’m a fan but I though the 13-3 record last year was inflated with wins against Vikings, Colts, Packers and Texans without their starter and a 6 game sweep of a weak division.

  7. Fitzpatrick does NOT nor never HAS “folded” under pressure. If anything he is over confident and tries to make a big play and throws risky passes.
    His arm strength is actually above average and he can be very accurate. He is just streaky.

  8. You have to give Ryan Fitzpatrick a lot of credit. He played his college ball at Harvard against the likes of Dartmouth and Columbia. It was amazing he was drafted at all he’s turned in a fine career.

  9. This is the perfect opportunity to hire Colin Kaepernick for 3 games. Doing so would save face for the league, defuse the lawsuit, give CK a chance to see if he can still play, and give the Bucs an option other than Fitz. Win, win, win.

  10. tomthebombtracy says:
    June 23, 2018 at 7:35 am
    Steelers benefit again from a starter not available at QB because they have TB there Monday night week 3. I’m a fan but I though the 13-3 record last year was inflated with wins against Vikings, Colts, Packers and Texans without their starter and a 6 game sweep of a weak division.

    There is a lot of opinion there without a lot of fact. The Eagles played one of the easiest schedules and won the super bowl, with a back up. The Steelers were something like 6-2 or 8-2 against teams with a winning record, they played one of the hardest schedules. I think they beat the Vikings regardless who the QB was, same with the Texans(Watson was still a rookie and we only saw a small sample) and the Colts(the Steelers have handled the Colts in the Luck era). The Packers game could’ve gone either way.

  11. He is the definition of what you want as a backup qb. Great team guy, dependable, and most important absoloutely capable of lighting it up any given appearance. I would have him on my team any day

  12. Interesting that Ronald Darby seems to be with Winston during these incidents with these women. He lies to the police for Winston and he admitted to video taping Winston while he was with the first woman in the bathroom when the rape supposedly occurred. Darby needs to be removed from the NFL as well and prosecuted.

  13. @streetyson,

    Tony Romo’s qbr is higher than 99.4 % of EVERY QB THAT EVER PLAYED THE GAME

  14. And with the first overall pick in the 2019 NFL draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers select….. (Insert decent college quarterback name here)
    Can’t think of any. Too early

  15. shlort says:
    June 23, 2018 at 7:24 am
    Considering Fitzpatrick is at least as good, if not better than Winston, he should be starting somewhere in the league. The guy hasnt managed to stay in the league that long by being terrible.
    —–
    Fitz isn’t some young unproven QB who is stuck on the bench so no one knows what he can really do. He is an 11 year veteran who the entire league has seen start multiple games throughout the years and from those starts concluded he is better suited to be a back up. His best season came while playing with the Jets. Even then his advanced metrics placed him at most as a high end back up. Which was proven the season after when he held out for starter money (as he should have considering the Jets brought him back as a starter) and the wheels came completely off. I like Fitz. He is definitely one of the best back up in the league but nothing more than that.

  16. everyone likes old fitz. seems like a standup guy. who knows what he could have done with better teams around him.

    now winston? the guy will always be trouble, and weird trouble at that. should cut their losses, you can afford a weirdo, even survive having a criminal on a team, but not at qb, we’ll unless it’s a manning of course.

  17. “Fitzpatrick does NOT nor never HAS “folded” under pressure. If anything he is over confident and tries to make a big play and throws risky passes”.

    Talk about delusional. He gets rid of the ball in panic mode to avoid getting hit and makes poor decisions. Fitzpatrick has worn out his welcome on every team he has played for. His stats are mediocre alone with his 58% completion percentage and just 40% under pressure. His career winning percentage is .408 and he is just like I said an average run of the mill Joe who folds like a cheap suit under pressure.That’s why he has worn out his welcome on every single team he has played for.

  18. I joke, but this suggests that it’s a bad idea to bring Fitzpatrick on as your backup, as he apparently will “curse” your team’s starter and get at least a handful of starts himself. Avoid!!!

  19. All b/c Winston couldn’t keep his hands to himself.
    It’s amazing how ya’ll rip on Fitz…I bet most of you who rip on Fitz were all big supporters of Vince Young and RG3…both of them flamed out in 3 seasons.
    Would you rather have Fitz as your insurance policy or VY or RG3?
    For my money I’d take Fitz in a heartbeat.
    The other 2 QBs are not dependable at all and couldn’t read even a college defense.

  20. Probably the rarest position in the NFL is the backup QB. Very few guys have the mindset to pull off that role. Nice to see guys like him get that chance to go out there a couple times a year and not feel like they are automatic losses.

  21. The Truth says, “Tony Romo’s qbr is higher than 99.4 % of EVERY QB THAT EVER PLAYED THE GAME.” Perhaps so, but Romo ALWAYS choked when the chips were down and the lights shone the brightest. ALWAYS. He’s doing very well as a commentator on CBS, so kudos to him for that. But as a QB, he was never going to get you anywhere in the playoffs–and he never did.

  22. v2787 says:
    June 23, 2018 at 12:55 pm
    The Truth says, “Tony Romo’s qbr is higher than 99.4 % of EVERY QB THAT EVER PLAYED THE GAME.” Perhaps so, but Romo ALWAYS choked when the chips were down and the lights shone the brightest. ALWAYS. He’s doing very well as a commentator on CBS, so kudos to him for that. But as a QB, he was never going to get you anywhere in the playoffs–and he never did.
    =========================================================================================

    I’m not a Romo fan or a Cowboys fan, but that’s simply not true.

    Of the past decade (2007-2016), Tony Romo leads all of 71 qualifying QBs in 4th Quarter and Overtime Passer Rating.

    Romo had something like 24 4th quarter comebacks, not many QB’s with more than that.

    From a 2015 article, the following:

    Since 2006, Romo has the most fourth quarter comebacks in the NFL with 24 and leads the league in game-winning drives with 29.

    He is 23-5 in the month of November, which is good for the highest winning percentage in NFL history.

    Romo also has the highest fourth quarter passer rating in NFL history with a mark of 102.9.

    His 93.1 passer rating in the final two minutes of a game is the highest among active quarterbacks and is good for fourth all-time, per pro-football-reference.com.

  23. The Bucs love Winston. And the text time he gets in trouble, they will still love him and stand by him. The Bucs are a mess. Good luck with that jerk.

  24. v2787 says:
    June 23, 2018 at 12:55 pm
    The Truth says, “Tony Romo’s qbr is higher than 99.4 % of EVERY QB THAT EVER PLAYED THE GAME.” Perhaps so, but Romo ALWAYS choked when the chips were down and the lights shone the brightest. ALWAYS.
    =================================================

    So you blame Romo for the refs calling Dez’s catch a non-catch when they should have won and played Seattle in the NFC Championship??

  25. Ryan Fitzpatrick’s career highlight has been to beat Brady in 2011 when he was with the Bills. Amazing how many the mediocre AFC East QBs have beaten Brady over the last few years, Fitzpatrick, Sanchez, Tennehill.

  26. If the Bucs were smart they would take a chance on trading for McCown for a season and draft Winston’s replacement next year or just tank it and grab the #1 pick.

  27. I think he was the second to last player taken in his draft year. But that 48 Wonderlic score offsets his physical limitations, and he`s still slinging while probably a hundred more highly rated prospects have come and gone.

  28. Fitzmagic is a gamer. Loves the game, never hook slides and plays with heart. He’s a gun slinger minus elite talent. Everyone who plays with him loves him. Harvard educated, family man with a great sense of humor. Saw it 1st hand. Good luck Fitz!

    Bills fan

  29. But probably the biggest and most surprising example of the group is Eli Manning, whose career passer rating of 837.4 is IDENTICAL to Hoyer!!

    Hey,hey…..part of those years the giants either had middling oline play or really bad receivers. I can name 3 receivers since Eli came in that were better than average…..cruz, plaxico, and Beckham. Even the years they won the super bowl they had middling line play. Plaxico could’ve been something special with Eli, but shot himself. Cruz was in camp 2 years before he broke out, didn’t get rostered because Coughlin favors veterans, then he had that one breakout year because every other receiver is hurt(super bowl year), then starts getting hurt himself because Eli has nobody else to throw to. Beckham, well you know his story already. To be honest the only thing i could say about Eli was that he’s clutch, but since Reese went on the streak of not drafting oline high especially when needed, he’s been too quick to throw the ball. Fitzpatrick has somehow found a way to go to teams that have at least 2 good oline players. I think even this year he has good lineman. Although, I can say Fitzpatrick is a hell of a lot more mobile and probably a better ball carrier than Eli. How do fumble the ball when nobody touches you on you qb slide? As a giants fan I’d like to someone to tell me the answer to that question. I’ve never seen that before Eli, but it’s probably happened right? Not with Fitzpatrick.

  30. I don’t think the Bucs will need to “tank it” this year to get the #1 pick…it will just happen naturally. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are like the Titanic RIGHT after it hit the iceberg. They are taking on water and after 28 more weeks of panic and chaos they will finally sink.

  31. The difference between Hoyer and Fitz together versus Matt Cassel is that Hoyer and Fitz can actually win games. Cassel simply cannot play. His arm strength is about on the level of Peyton Manning in his final season, but without the mental acuity to go with it. Fitzpatrick has the current record for passing touchdowns in a season for the New York Jets, and the single game passing touchdown record for the Houston Texans. Brian Hoyer was the last quarterback for the Cleveland Browns to win consecutive games (and pass for 300 yards, unless McCown or someone else did it and I didn’t notice). The last time Matt Cassel won a game…I guess with Kansas City?

    No matter who starts, Tampa is looking at a VERY tough three games. Chances are whomever starts will a good chance to have some bad games, or lose those games. Winston will likely get the job back as soon as he returns if the suspension remains for three, even if he would have maybe had the same success as whomever ends up taking those starts.

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