http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/1879 ... support-qb
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Wednesday acknowledged that Jameis Winston made a mistake with his poor choice of words to elementary school children regarding gender roles last week that drew public scrutiny but also said they fully supported the quarterback.
Speaking to reporters at the NFL scouting combine on Wednesday, head coach Dirk Koetter and general manager Jason Licht defended the 23-year-old starting quarterback.
"Obviously the situation with the school last week, in the midst of a school presentation, Jameis, he made a mistake," Koetter said. "And he owned up to that mistake. He's 23 years old. I think anyone who has to stand behind a microphone and talk to a group of people, you're going to make mistakes from time to time. There's been other ones in the sports world very recently."
Winston told the fifth-grade class at Melrose Elementary school in St. Petersburg, Florida, "All my young boys, stand up. The ladies, sit down," Winston said. "But all my boys, stand up. We strong, right? We strong! We strong, right? All my boys, tell me one time: I can do anything I put my mind to. Now, a lot of boys aren't supposed to be soft-spoken. You know what I'm saying? One day y'all are going to have a very deep voice like this [in deep voice]. One day, you'll have a very, very deep voice.
"But the ladies, they're supposed to be silent, polite, gentle. My men, my men [are] supposed to be strong. I want y'all to tell me what the third rule of life is: I can do anything I put my mind to."
""He unfortunately made a mistake, used a poor word choice. He knows it. He owned it. We are fully-supportive of Jameis. I could sit here and talk for hours about how much we love Jameis Winston. From ownership to everyone in the building, we fully support Jameis."
Buccaneers GM Jason Licht
The Tampa Bay Times posted video of Winston's comments.
Winston later acknowledged his "poor word choice" to the Times and said that he only intended to motivate a male student in the back of the classroom but didn't want to single him out. It was troubling for some, however, given that Winston had faced allegations of sexual assault as a student at Florida State in 2012. He was never charged with a crime, but did settle a federal lawsuit with the accuser in December. The school also agreed to pay the woman a $950,000 settlement as part of a Title IX complaint.
"Jameis continues to exceed expectations as the face of our franchise every single day," Koetter said. "We couldn't be happier with Jameis. It was an unfortunate situation. He owned up to it and we've got to move forward."