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Monday, May 21, 2012
Winslow: You don't get rid of best players

By Pat Yasinskas


You might want to check out the audio of Tampa Bay tight end Kellen Winslow telling SiriusXM NFL radio that the Buccaneers have told him they’ll try to trade him.

I heard the tail end of the interview in my car earlier Monday, but didn’t hear the strongest stuff until I got the full audio.

Winslow
Winslow said coach Greg Schiano was “kind of upset" that he wasn’t working out with his teammates in the offseason and wasn’t in Tampa last week, when the Bucs began the on-field portion of their organized team activities.

“You know, look, I’ve been there the last three years and I’ve had a successful career so far," Winslow said. “You just don’t get rid of one of your best players because of that."

Winslow said he had been working out on his own in San Diego and flew back to Tampa on Saturday night. Winslow said he planned to begin working out with his teammates Monday, but Schiano informed him Saturday night that the team wanted to move in a different direction and would attempt to trade him. If a deal can’t be worked out -- and other teams may be hesitant to take on Winslow’s current contract -- it’s safe to assume Winslow will be released.

“That’s just what I was told," Winslow said. “I have nothing bad to say about Coach Schiano. It was just a disagreement on why I’m not there yet."

I get Winslow’s point about not getting rid of a good player for not spending the entire offseason with his teammates. Winslow has been a good player and it’s not unusual for some veterans to skip all or most of the offseason program and show up only for minicamps. Carolina receiver Steve Smith has done that frequently in the past.

But Winslow doesn’t have quite the stature of Smith. And whatever status he had with former coach Raheem Morris disappeared the moment Schiano was hired. Schiano comes from the Bill Belichick school of coaching and he’s trying to set some framework for his team. He’s making it real clear that players will do things his way -- or else they won’t play for the Bucs.