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August 8, 2012 @ 11:32 am
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Schiano Expects Penn Will Be Back For Season Opener

Written by Mark
Mark Cook


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Head Coach Greg Schiano spoke to the media Wednesday afternoon discussing several topics including the most recent roster transactions, what he feels about coaching his first NFL game as a head coach and the progress of Donald Penn's injured calf.
Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano held his daily news conference in the media studio at One Buc Place Wednesday afternoon. Below is a transcript of the entire press conference.

Opening statement:

“Couple of roster moves (defensive end) Jayme Mitchell left the team. (Cornerback) Derrick Roberson, we waived Derrick. James Rogers from Michigan is coming in to play corner and Teryl White (defensive tackle) is going to be coming in and we will have them available for Friday night. Other than that, a good practice. We hit on a lot of situations. Guys pushed through and we focused on the Bucs. That was it. Sometimes when you have that first preseason game hanging in the balance but this is all about us right now. We have to learn our stuff. We have to get good at our stuff. Now, we’ll pay some attention here to going and playing a game. A chance to go away with our football team for the first time. That’s always interesting, first time you hit the road, just us. So that will be fun. And then to get back into playing a game. Game day is my favorite. I don’t care if its preseason or championship game, they’re all fun. I’m looking forward to it.”

Special meaning for you on first game as Bucs Coach?
“One of the things I’m just grateful I’ve been a head coach for 11 years so I kinda know what to expect in a game.  I remember my first game as a head coach. That was a scary proposition.”

What was so scary?
“All the stuff I had to think about that I didn’t have to think about.”

Now that stuff comes easy?
“Nothing comes easy. But at least you know what to expect.”

What’ the difference between college and the NFL to you?
“The replay is a big difference, but if you think about it the pro game is coming closer to the college game now. Last year it was scoring plays being reviewed, every scoring play, now it’s scoring plays and turnovers being reviewed, so there’s less and less that as a head coach you can challenge on, which is good. I am still very much in favor of the white hat being the guy who sees it underneath the hood, and having coached in college there’s no doubt in my mind that’s the right way.”

 Is there a sense of achievement with you in this upcoming game?
“I really don’t think that way. I never have. That’s probably cheating the process a little bit, though, because you never really get to enjoy it, but I’ve always kind of been, what’s next. That’s just kind of how I operate. Hopefully some day, you retire and look back and say it was a heck of a deal, but not while I’m doing it.”

Any fatigue today?
“Oh, sure, no doubt. Heavy legged, but the thing I love is that they busted their butt and went as hard as they could. Now that isn’t what it looked like six days ago, that’s for sure. But now is the time. It’s okay to be there now. We won’t be there September. 9. We’ll feel great then, but right now it’s the heart of training camp, so it’s okay.”

What will you do in use of key players in Friday’s game in terms of how long will play?
“Everybody is different, and so I’m not going to go into all the individual plans for each guy. We’ll have a plan for every player, and I learned a long time ago whether it was in scrimmages in college football or in the preseason, we’re sticking to the plan. I don’t care what the situation is. That’s when you get yourself in trouble, when you say, ‘ah, let ‘em have another series.’ Cooler mind prevailed in a meeting room when we decided all this so we’ll stick to the plan. The harder part is, as the game goes on and you get different guys and your mixing and matching, making sure you’ve got 11 guys on the field every play. As crazy as that sounds, you watch it every week and there’s some poor coach screaming and yelling trying to get everybody out there. It’s very relaxing.”

How do you balance trying out different plays and not showing things to Carolina?
“There are certain things we won’t show, but I want to run our stuff. That’s what we do. We are who we are. I want to make sure that we keep it simple enough though that we can evaluate our guys. I don’t want the reason to be that a guy didn’t make a block, a tackle, a catch, or a run because he didn’t know what he was doing. Right now I want to evaluate their physical ability to play against other people in a competitive arena with this part being clear. Because in a game plan week, we didn’t game plan at all, we will look at some stuff tomorrow and then we will go play the game Friday. In a game plan week you build in or you build as the week goes on and you are very, very familiar [with] exactly what you are going to do. You have a good idea on what they are going to do and it is very pointed or focused repetitions. Here we are just doing everything right now. So we will shrink it down to make sure that the guys know exactly what it is—we won’t know exactly what we are going against, but we will know what we are doing.”

What are your impressions of Greg Ellingson?
“I tell you Greg (Ellingson) has been a pleasant; not a surprise, I shouldn’t say that because we played against him — we actually played FIU when I was at Rutgers, and he was a pain in the rear end. He was catching balls all over the place. The thing I remember about him as a player is he loved football. You could just see the passion he has about the game. He practices that way. Whether he is scout team, playing on the unit [or] special teams the guy goes a million miles per an hour.”

Did you have to have a backup quarterback with starting NFL experience?
“We sure wanted to. We wanted an established pro that was going to add value to the room. When you talk about a quarterback room, quarterbacks are like no other position. They meet more than any position. When special teams is going on, when all that stuff is going on, they have meetings with their quarterback’s coach and with the offensive coordinator. So that room really is a think tank – coaches and players. And you want to make sure that everybody in that room can add value.”

Any update on Donald Penn?
“Well he’s excited to get back. I want to make sure that when we bring him back he’s good to go. Because what we don’t want is a lingering injury. It’s giving him the opportunity to get him into pretty good shape, which is not as bad as you think. As long as we get him back where he’ll have time to sharpen up his game and knock the rust off and be ready to play, that’ll be the key. I think he will.”

-Victoria Horchak and Haley Cornish contributed to this report

Last modified on Wednesday, 08 August 2012 12:04

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    Horse: Is that you in the photograph chasing "The Don" ?
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    Godd to know the Penn information. Go Bucs!
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