5 Options for Jameis Winston’s 2014 New Year’s Resolution

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5 Options for Jameis Winston’s 2014 New Year’s Resolution

jameis winston
Melina Vastola - USA TODAY Sports

With New Year’s Eve rapidly approaching, people across the country are taking time to find out what they don’t like about themselves and pledging to change it in 2014. Even people who have accomplished historically great things in 2013 can find ways to improve themselves in the coming year. So for an accomplished young man like Jameis Winston, what will his resolution focus on?

Winston has accomplished more in a shorter time as a football player than anybody in history. He set freshman records for passing this season and became the youngest winner of the Heisman Trophy ever (and the second freshman to win in a row). He led the Florida State Seminoles to a dominant regular season, winning the ACC title with a perfect 13-0 record and into the BCS National Championship as the only undefeated team in FBS this season. In addition to his Heisman, Winston won the Davey O’Brien Award as the top quarterback in the country, the Walter Camp Player of the Year Award, and both ACC Offensive Player of the Year and ACC Player of the Year honors.

That’s a lot of hardware for a young man playing his first season of college football. The challenge for Winston will be to maintain his incredible level of play on the field. That’s going to be a difficult task to improve on what has been an almost perfect 2013 for the freshman quarterback. Finding a way to move forward and continue to make strides in his game despite being recognized as the best already will be what Winston must focus on in 2014 and beyond.

With that said, let’s count down five options for Jameis Winston’s 2014 New Year’s resolution.

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5. Stay Hungry

jameis winston
Adam Hunger - USA TODAY Sports

Every player sets out to become the best at what he does and lead his team to the top. Depending on how the BCS National Championship plays out, Winston may be able to check both of those goals off his bucket list after just one season. The best thing that Winston can do for himself as a player is to put all the awards and trophies and accolades in the back of a closet somewhere where he can’t see them and won’t be reminded of them. Then attack 2014 with a clean slate and hungry attitude that brought him so much success in 2013.

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4. Continue Being a Leader of the Team

jameis winston
Kim Klement - USA TODAY Sports

When talking with the media, Jameis Winston is always sure to deflect praise to his teammates and use “we” language when discussing the success of this season rather than “I” language. That unselfishness has made him a great leader of the team and he will need to continue doing that moving forward. By sharing the spotlight, he brings every member of the team up to his level rather than separating himself for his excellent athletic ability. That not only is refreshing to see but it helps to build the camaraderie of the team, which has allowed them to dominate as a team all season long.

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3. Manage Expectations

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Jeremy Brevard - USA TODAY Sports

Winston set NCAA and ACC freshman records left and right with his stats this season as well as leading the nation in QBR and passer rating. The expectation, both internally and externally, is that he will only build on those number going forward. But improving on astronomical numbers like he put up in 2013 isn’t as easy as just showing up for another year of eligibility. Winston needs to manage his own expectations as well the expectations of other around him to avoid putting unnecessary pressure on himself to match what he did this season.

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2. Embrace Adversity in 2014

jameis winston
Jeremy Brevard - USA TODAY Sports

Things seemed to come pretty easy for Winston in 2013. He stepped into the starting role and immediately started blowing opponents off of the field. It’s highly unlikely that will continue to be the case as defenses become more exotic and more disruptive to try and stop him. While everyone wants to have a perfect record, it’s likely that FSU will stumble at some point in 2014 and Winston will eventually have a bad game. Adversity is coming as it does for every football player at some point. Winston must embrace it and learn from it.

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1. Continue to Avoid "Johnny Manziel Disease"

jameis winston
Melina Vastola - USA TODAY Sports

Winston made himself an early star when he gave reporters permission to smack him in the head if he came down with “Jonny Manziel Disease” before he even took a snap for FSU. Winston was able to match Manziel’s on-field accomplishments in 2013 but he still has to avoid the off-field distractions that Manziel got into after winning the Heisman last offseason. While you can argue that Manziel was just as good on the field this season, his image took a major hit because of his antics and every mistake was then amplified. That creates a distraction, which takes away from the team and can ultimately lead to losses. Becoming a distraction is one thing that Jameis Winston does not want to accomplish in 2014.

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