Appearing on “Late Hits” with Lance Medow and Charles Davis on Sirius XM, Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Chris Godwin took time to talk about everything from Team Godwin Foundation events to the efforts moving towards the 2020 NFL Season.
The first topic of conversation was Godwin’s raffle opportunity for fans to play Call of Duty with him in the near future, which we wrote about on a previous post here on Bucs Nation.
Following the foundation conversation though, Charles Davis shifted the talk to football. Specifically, Davis asked about how the recent provisions put in place have impacted his ability to get to know his new quarterback, Tom Brady. To which, Godwin responded,
“It’s been difficult, like everybody else trying to communicate during these times. It’s especially difficult when you have a new quarterback. I think the biggest thing that we’re trying to do is trying to build chemistry by really just getting a feel for each other. Kind of talking through concepts and stuff like that.”
Of course, one thing the Bucs have going for them is the return of their entire offensive coaching staff and almost all of their key skill position players from the team’s first year under head coach Bruce Arians.
“Everybody else on the team, the skill guys that are returning, are going to be so familiar with the system,” Godwin said. “So we’re not going to have that learning curve initially, and I think it’s safe to say that Tom’s a pretty smart guy so in terms of him grasping the offense, I think he’s going to do a really good job at that.”
While there will be familiarity for Godwin when he steps on the field in 2020 pertaining to the scheme, fans of the wide receiver are preparing to cope with seeing the 2019 Pro Bowler in a new number.
Upon Brady’s arrival, the fourth-year player showed his respect for the greatly accomplished quarterback by stepping aside for his new quarterback to keep the number twelve he’s become so synonymous with.
Davis asked about the number change, coming from the angle of being an athlete himself who played at the highest levels of football as well.
“Like you said, a number - it means a lot,” Godwin said. “...and if you’re fortunate enough to be able to wear the same number at multiple levels then you recognize how significant that is and what that means to players. Like you said, it becomes a part of your identity. For me, I’ve been wearing it since I was fourteen years old, so it’s been ten years now. It’s something I’ve definitely grown really fond of and something I still kind of identify with.”
Despite the long attachment to the number he’ll no longer wear - at least for the time being - Godwin did display a resilient attitude and conveyed excitement about wearing the number fourteen in 2020 by saying,
“At the end of the day, a number is a number, and the players make the number. So I’m excited to wear my new number, it’s kind of like an alter-ego for me, and if there’s anybody like that I would give it to I think Tom is one of few guys that I would.”
This off-season has been a big one for the Buccaneers franchise, and it isn’t a new experience. We’ve seen this team touted as off-season winners a few times in recent history, without any of those converting to a playoff appearance or even a winning record.
Signing Tom Brady and trading for Rob Gronkowski has put Tampa atop the off-season winners bracket once more, and Godwin admitted it felt good to see it all unfold.
“It makes you feel really good as a player, knowing that someone like Tom, with basically the pick of the litter decided that he wants to come down here and that we have the pieces here that he’s looking for in terms of a new place. He hasn’t been anywhere else, and the time that he decides to leave he’s like, ‘I want to go play in Tampa with Chris, with Mike, with Cam, with OJ...’ And I think that says a lot about the production that we’ve put on film over the last couple of years and the progression that we’re working on. And I think it’s going to set the stage for a really bright future.”
Still, that really bright future which seems to be coming could all turn to nightmares in a hurry. Another fact Godwin acknowledged and shared his thoughts about, saying,
“On paper we have a really talented team, but I think we’ve seen in the past that having a great team on paper doesn't necessarily translate to wins. So I think the work has to come first and I think we all have to be committed to that process, and understand that when adversity hits - you know - it’s adversity, we just have to fight through it together. As long as we’re pulling the rope in the same direction then we’ll be good. Following that it’s just limiting the mental errors and the plays that kill ourselves, and I think once we stop doing that, I think you’ll really start to see the shift and what will be the new Tampa Bay Buccaneers.”
While on the air with Medow and Davis, Godwin also discussed his interactions thus far with new tight end Rob Gronkowski, and what the stacked tight end group could mean for the offense in general.
Godwin continues to be an in demand player from the Buccaneers as fans and media alike continue to speculate and wonder what a Tom Brady led Bucs offense might be able to do with the second-year of Todd Bowles’ defense returning all of its own key contributors.
The Pro Bowl and All-Pro caliber receiver says he’s staying active and looking forward to getting to work for the new season. As I’m sure all of Bucs Nation is anxiously waiting to see all of it come together.