TAMPA — When you throw 30 interceptions in a season and squint a lot as a quarterback, the question is going to continue to come up.
Is something wrong with Jameis Winston’s eyesight?
“He can’t read the scoreboard but he can see the guys in front of him,'' Bucs head coach Bruce Arians said in the final press conference of 2019. "So he’s all right.”
Apparently, all right wasn’t good enough.
Everybody has known Winston is nearsighted since at least his days at Florida State.
Whether it affected his accuracy throwing the football was always a lingering question for the Bucs quarterback.
But one thing is confirmed: Winston recently underwent LASIK surgery to repair his vision.
"Jameis did not want to count out any options that he had that could possibly help him with the game he loves so much,'' said Denise White, Winston’s spokesperson. "He doesn’t want to miss out on any opportunity that presents itself. This is the game he loves and he wants to be the best at it and if there are any options that can improve his game he is willing to do it.''
Winston fueled not-so-subtle speculation when he posted a picture on Instagram of him wearing oversized, dark sunglasses, the kind you might expect to wear after a long visit to the eye doctor, with the statement "They know!!!’
All we know is it can’t hurt Winston in 2020 if he can see where he’s throwing the football. But nearsightedness notwithstanding, he actually did a better job throwing the deep ball this season with accuracy than at any point in his career.
The word “LASIK” is an acronym for “laser-assisted in situ keratomileusis.” The procedure reshapes the cornea to enable light entering the eye to be properly focused onto the retina for clearer vision.
It only takes about 15 minutes for both eyes but improves vision dramatically without the use of corrective eyewear.
It’s unknown if this is something Winston did on his own or whether he filled a request from coaches or from anyone with the Bucs.
Winston led the NFL in passing with 5,109 yards and threw 33 touchdowns. It’s not a bad talking point for teams should he make it to free agency in March. But the future is so bright, he has to wear shades.