At least that's what GM Mark Dominik said recently, despite the recent word floating from the Tampa streets that Freeman could potentially be the team's in 2009.
"The ultimate goal is to let Josh Freeman sit back and learn,'' Dominik said Saturday.Dominik also discussed the fact that the quarterback race in Tampa is "wide open," which, given the above quotes, shouldn't come as a surprise at all, really.
[...]"I still think he's a 21-year-old quarterback who came out as a true junior,'' Dominik said of Freeman. "You'd like for him to grow and mature into his role and not be forced into it.''
And neither should the fact that Dominik wants him to sit; there's a pretty clear (although not always 100-percent) correlation between young quarterbacks who are given time to sit and watch, and ensuing success. Obviously there are cases where being thrown into the fire works -- Peyton Manning and Troy Aikman come to mind -- but generally speaking, those are the great players who simply survive.
More often than not, you want your QB to sit, learn and stay healthy, especially while rebuilding a team; provided that's Dominik's goal in Tampa right now -- as opposed to winning -- I think you can expect to see Freeman with clipboard in hand for most, if not all, of 2009.