Well this is not good for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers:
BUZZFEED NEWS – The NFL is investigating an allegation that Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston grabbed a female Uber driver’s crotch in 2016, BuzzFeed News has learned.
A letter, viewed by BuzzFeed News, was sent from the NFL’s special counsel for investigations, Lisa Friel, to the Uber driver on Thursday. “The League has been informed that you may have been the victim of such a violation perpetrated by Tampa Bay Buccaneers player Jameis Winston. The league takes allegations of this nature very seriously and has opened an investigation into this matter,” the letter read.
“The matter is under review,” Brian McCarthy, an NFL spokesman, told BuzzFeed News.
Kate, a female Uber driver, was hailed to the lively party scene of downtown Scottsdale, Arizona to pick up a passenger around 2 a.m. on Sunday March 13, 2016. There, Kate told BuzzFeed News that a small group of men excitedly told her that she would be chauffeuring someone famous that night — Jameis Winston, 2013 Heisman Trophy winner and now quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
The men placed Winston in the front passenger seat — Kate said he was the only passenger. “I started driving, and right away, Jameis behaved poorly” by shouting, in part, homophobic slurs at pedestrians, said Kate, who did not want to be identified by her full name for fear of negative attention and potential backlash from football fans. He then asked to stop for food.
Waiting in line at the drive-thru of Los Betos Mexican Food, “he reached over and he just grabbed my crotch,” Kate said, alleging that Winston held his hand there for three to five seconds and removed it only after she looked up in shock and said, “What’s up with that?”
“I wasn’t just creeped out,” said Kate, who had been driving with Uber for more than two years at that point. (She no longer drives for the service.) “I was frozen.” She described Winston as “very physically imposing.”
“I mean he’s an NFL quarterback and I’m 5 ft 6. I’m not prepared for that. So I completely froze,” she said, worried that she might provoke an unwanted reaction.
Winston’s representative, Russ Spielman, issued a statement denying the allegations: “We categorically deny this allegation. It is our understanding the uber driver was unable to identify the specific individual who allegedly touched this driver inappropriately. The only reason his name is being dragged in to this is that his uber account was used to call the ride.”
When asked about the NFL’s letter, he said, “I don’t have a comment on that, what you’re hearing is the first time I’m hearing about that.”
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers didn’t respond to multiple requests for comment.
Here’s the thing. Even if Winston is innocent, many are going to assume he’s guilty because of his reprehensible behavior in the past. “Same ole Jameis” is what a college football friend of mine said to me.
A sports reporter in Tampa says this is the last thing the team needs right now:
Quite possibly the very, very last thing this franchise needs at this juncture. https://t.co/ozlfpGXNoS— Joey Knight (@TBTimes_Bulls) November 17, 2017