The timing seems odd, but there could be more to the story.
A day after Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston formally learned that he’ll be suspended for the first three games of the regular season, word emerged that he had parted ways with his agents. As one league source explains it to PFT, the change had been in the works for a few months.
According to the source, Winston wants more experienced football agents to handle his next contract. Baseball agents Greg Genske and Kenny Felder negotiated Winston’s first contract, a wage-scale deal that culminated in the Bucs automatically picking up a non-negotiable 2019 option worth $20.9 million.
If that’s the case, the timing still seems unusual. With the Bucs not likely to open contract talks with Winston any time soon, why not let the dust fully settle on the three-game suspension? The move instead seems to be a reaction to the suspension, and in turn an indictment of their efforts to get him the best possible deal with the NFL, managing to cut the baseline suspension in half and, perhaps more importantly, to conceal from public view specific details that could have sparked a public outcry culminating in Winston being cut.
It remains to be seen whether other agents clamor to be associated with Winston. While he’ll surely secure representation from someone, it would be interesting to know how many times he hears “no” before he finds someone who will take him on as a client.