When the Buccaneers selected quarterback Kyle Trask out of the University of Florida in the second round of the 2021 NFL draft many believed the Bucs had found their succession plan after Tom Brady was no longer around while others believed Trask would never be anything more than a backup in the NFL.
Fast forward to 2022 and Kyle Trask is possibly the most important player on the team when coming into these preseason matchups. In college, Trask was a late bloomer and perhaps he is that in the NFL too, but he must show some signs of progress for the team to feel good about the future of the quarterback position.
Trask was fine in 2021 as there weren’t many expectations. He had some plays that showed what he could be, while others would leave people scratching their heads. Year two of camp for him has been no different. In the first portion of camp without the pads on, Trask looked decent and many said he looked better than Blaine Gabbert who he was likely going to be battling with for the backup quarterback job. Since the pads have come on though, it has seemed to just go downhill from there.
He has routinely thrown wobbly balls, multiple interceptions and has struggled with accuracy. While he has made some nice plays on occasion, you would like to see a second round pick progress a bit more in year two.
Bucs head coach Todd Bowles has said that Tom Brady will not be playing in the preseason opener against the Miami Dolphins, so this could give Trask an excellent opportunity to prove that his shaky practices are no big deal. Some guys just don’t practice very well and do better in actual game situations. That is fine, but that makes these preseason games even more crucial for Trask.
There is a real chance that this is Tom Brady’s final year in a Bucs uniform or even the NFL itself and these next three preseason games will likely be the last time the Bucs front office and coaching staff are able to see Trask play against another opponent for the rest of 2022.
If Trask continues his struggles, that would have to give Jason Licht pause on handing the reigns over to him in 2023 right? There is no way he can be the starter if their last evaluation of him is not promising. The 2023 draft is regarded as a pretty strong one at QB and it would not shock me to see the Bucs target a guy early if Trask struggles.
Kyle Trask can’t win the 2023 starting QB job this preseason, but he could certainly lose it. Tampa Bay should be looking to play Trask as much as possible this preseason as they have to know what they have in the guy. Let’s hope he is able to put his past few practices behind him, go out and just play good football and show progress from year one to year two. The Bucs are sure hoping he does.