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Jameis Winston After 30 INT Season: 'You Look at My Numbers, I'm Ballin''

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistDecember 30, 2019

TAMPA, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 29:  Jameis Winston #3 of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers scrambles with the ball against the Atlanta Falcons during the second half at Raymond James Stadium on December 29, 2019 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston remained upbeat despite finishing the 2019 season with 30 interceptions, the last of which resulted in a 28-22 defeat to the Atlanta Falcons on Sunday.

Speaking with reporters after the game, Winston dismissed his turnover numbers and pointed to his gaudy passing yards (5,109) and passing touchdowns (33).

"You look at my numbers, I'm ballin'," Winston said.

SportsCenter @SportsCenter

Jameis is confident he can be "the best." https://t.co/vzUxvc26mp

On the first play of overtime, Deion Jones stepped in front of a Winston pass and returned it 27 yards for a touchdown.

NFL @NFL

DEION JONES. PICK-6 FOR THE WIN. #ATLvsTB https://t.co/8pKNOa0jHs

According to ESPN Stats & Info, Winston is the first player in NFL history to finish with 30 touchdowns and 30 interceptions. He joins elite company as well by eclipsing the 5,000-yard mark.

B/R Gridiron @brgridiron

Jameis has reached 5,000 passing yards on the season. Only other QBs to do that: - Peyton - Brees x4 - Brady - Big Ben - Mahomes - Marino - Stafford https://t.co/nEyH27pnsN

Winston is correct in that he could be one of the NFL's best quarterbacks if he were to cut out so many of his turnovers. But Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians provided the most succinct summary of the fifth-year passer:

Scott Smith @ScottSBucs

Bruce Arians says “there’s so much good and so much outright terrible” in terms of evaluating Jameis Winston and the future.

Since entering the league in 2015, Winston has thrown an NFL-high 88 interceptions, according to Pro Football Reference. Philip Rivers is the only other quarterback with 70-plus picks.

Brett Favre is the prime example of a quarterback who succeeded despite taking chances and often piling up the turnovers. Favre is a Hall of Famer despite owning the all-time interceptions record (336).

Winston (3.4 percent) and Favre (3.3 percent) are nearly equal in interception rate as well, per Pro Football Reference. Granted, Winston plays in an era where rule changes have made life much easier for quarterbacks compared to the bulk of Favre's playing career.

The Buccaneers will undoubtedly have a difficult decision this offseason as Winston approaches free agency. He made clear progress in his first season with Arians yet committed the same errors he has from seasons before.

Making the former Heisman Trophy winner the foundation of your offense—be it in Tampa Bay or elsewhere—remains a risky proposition.