Former Buccaneers quarterback Mike Glennon was released by the Arizona Cardinals on Friday afternoon, which might give the Tampa Bay front office another option when it comes to finding Jameis Winston a backup quarterback for 2019.
Cardinals released QB Mike Glennon and safety Antoine Bethea.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 8, 2019
As detailed here, the Bucs are currently without a backup to Winston, with Ryan Fitzpatrick and Ryan Griffin both being free agents. Fitzpatrick will look for a starting job elsewhere, while Griffin’s reliability as a No. 2 is questionable at best when you consider the fact that he hasn’t taken a regular season NFL snap yet. With that in mind, could a reunion between the Bucs and Glennon be a possibility?
Tampa Bay drafted the 6-foot-6 signal-caller out of North Carolina State in the third round of the 2013 NFL Draft. He spent four years with the Bucs, playing in 21 games (18 starts). In three seasons of action, Glennon completed 59.4 percent of his passes, threw for 30 touchdowns to 15 interceptions and led three comeback/game-winning drives. His best year came as a rookie, when he completed 59.4 percent of his passes and threw for 2,608 yards and 19 touchdowns to nine interceptions.
An overall record of 5-13 as a starter in Tampa isn’t going to impress anyone, but one of those seasons was with a Greg Schiano-coached team and the other involved splitting time with Josh McCown. In 2015 and 2016, Glennon served as Winston’s backup. He didn’t see the field in 2015, but he completed 10 of his 11 passes for 75 yards and a touchdown in 2016.
Since leaving via free agency in 2017, Glennon hasn’t been able to stick anywhere. He signed a ridiculously lucrative contract with the Bears. He started four games, throwing for 833 yards and four touchdowns to five interceptions. Ultimately, No. 2 overall pick Mitchell Trubisky took over. That was the end of Glennon in Chicago. He was with Arizona in 2018, playing in just two games. He completed 15 of his 21 passes for 174 yards and a touchdown.
At 29 years old, Glennon is once again looking for a new team. Considering how the last couple of years have gone, it doesn’t seem likely that he would get a starting job anywhere. No one can blame him one bit for leaving Tampa in 2017, as he had to see what else was out there. But after things didn’t work out elsewhere, why shouldn’t he be brought back home? When it comes to second-string jobs, what better place to be than the city that you got your start in?
It would be a comfortable fit for Glennon, who knows the locker room well. He has worked with Winston before and been around a lot of the personnel that currently exists on the offense. Not only should Tampa be a comfortable landing spot for Glennon, but Glennon should be a comfortable option for the front office. The current regime didn’t draft him, but they spent three years with him. There’s familiarity there. Here’s what general manager Jason Licht said about Glennon after taking the general manager job in 2014:
“I will tell you this. From what I’ve seen so far, I am impressed with the young kid at quarterback. I think he’s got three things that you look for in a quarterback. He’s an accurate passer, he’s very smart, and he’s very tough. It’s hard to judge a guy in his rookie year.”
His intelligence, accuracy and pretty solid arm strength would seem to make him a fit for what new head coach Bruce Arians looks for in a quarterback. Plus, the price tag shouldn’t be too high on a guy who has been released after one year at his last two stops.
Winston needs a backup, and even later-round picks might be better spent on the defense or along the offensive line. Why not bring Glennon home?