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Bucs still waiting for Jameis Winston and Mike Evans to click

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On paper, the combination is lethal, dangerous, maybe even historic.

So far, however, Jameis Winston and Mike Evans haven’t clicked.

Before the season, Winston dared to compare Evans’ impact to that of Jerry Rice, the best receiver of them all. This season, in which Evans has been injured, they have only 13 completions in 33 attempts for no touchdowns and three interceptions.

So what does Evans need to do to return to the form of his rookie season?

“Just practice hard and make the plays when the ball comes my way,” Evans said. “There’s a couple times I’m not making the plays that I’m usually capable of, but there are 11 games left in the season. I’ve played three full games, so this will be my fourth full game I get to play and I’m excited about this opportunity.”

For Evans, this figures to be a big week. Last year, he caught seven passes for 207 yards and two scores against Washington. It was his biggest yardage day of the year.

This year, Evans has only one 100-yard day, in an admittedly disappointing day against Houston.

“It was a great game for me,” Evans said. “It showed my ability to be able to take over games and things like that and it showed my ability at the receiver position, but they’re a different defense this year – a lot of guys injured, they play different schemes and things like that. It will be a challenge for us, but it’s nothing we can’t handle.”

Evans said his own chemistry with quarterback Jameis Winston is fine.

“It’s good,” Evans said. “He’s putting the ball where it needs to be. I’ve been making plays and then a couple I haven’t been making, but I’ll start making them.

“We have 11 games left. By the end of this year I think people will be talking about our offense.”

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit

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