INDIANAPOLIS – Drawing the largest crowd of onlookers of any player at this year's NFL Scouting Combine, Florida State and Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Jameis Winston didn't wait for the media to ask him a question before speaking.
He didn't need to. He knew what was coming.
"First off, before we start anything, I want to let you all know that I know I've made mistakes and I know I have a past but right now it's about me moving forward and earning the trust of all these 32 teams out there," Winston said on Friday inside of Lucas Oil Stadium. "And by saying that, I'm a competitor, and I know what I'm capable of doing so I will be throwing tomorrow at the combine."
With that opening statement, Winston answered the two questions on everybody's mind.
Winston accepted responsibility for his part in the former before downplaying the latter.
"I had an MRI just like everyone else," Winston said. "I've been playing football since I was four years old and my shoulder has been fine."
Winston is in Indianapolis as a consensus top-two quarterback prospect alongside Oregon signal-caller Marcus Mariota. But when asked about being the first quarterback off the board, Winston said that he has grander goals.
"You know I'm not into no competition type of thing. I'm in it to win games and be the face of someone's franchise," Winston said. "This is no competition between just me and Mariota, because one thing about me, I plan on winning the Super Bowl next year.
"So it's going to be me versus Peyton Manning and me versus Tom Brady. I want to be viewed like that. I want my name to stay relevant for the next 15 or 20 years of my career."
In past seasons, Winston has put football on the backburner in the spring to play baseball and pitch at FSU – he finished last year with a 1.08 ERA over 33 1/3 innings. But with the NFL Draft approaching, his second sport will be left behind.
"Right now I'm just focusing on football. This is actually the first time I've ever had an offseason to just work on being a quarterback," Winston said. "I was a pitcher, so that may be why the shoulder thing. But, I mean, this is the first time I've had an offseason and I love it. I love just putting everything to football."
Thick in the conversation to be selected first overall come April 30, Winston wants to show the Tampa Bay Buccaneers what he can do at the next level so he can remain in the Sunshine State.
"It would just be a privilege to play in Tampa period," Winston said. "With the Florida State fan base and everything I've been involved with in the state of Florida and by coach (Lovie) Smith speaking highly of me, that let's me know if I'm a part of their program, I already have the trust factor."