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August 30, 2012 @ 6:38 pm
Current rating: 5.00 Stars/1 Votes

Schiano On Final Cuts: "We're Going To Do What's Best For The Bucs"

Written by Dory
Dory LeBlanc


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Bucs head coach Greg Schiano spoke to the media following practice at One Buc Place Thursday afternoon. Schiano discusses the impending final roster cuts, the three players in the mix to replace the injured Davin Joseph at RG, and how he evaluates players who have not seen a lot of time due to injury.
What did you get off the tape on the offensive line?
“I didn’t think we had a lot of movement up front. Certain guys at times did well. I don’t think our second-level blockers did a great job on their linebackers. So you know, things that would normally cause problems in the run game did. Problems in the pass game, there was a little confusion, guys that had not played together on some pickups. And not necessarily outnumber pressure or anything but basic three to a side stuff that we made some mistakes on for reasons that I’d rather not get into.”

Jamon Meredith at right guard ran with first team and did you see enough to go that way at Carolina?
“No, not yet, he just happened to be in there then. Ted (Larsen) ran with the ones as well. I don’t think Derek (Hardman) did but Ted (Larsen) and Jamon (Meredith) did.”

Did any of those three emerge?
“I don’t know if one night is going to do it. To answer your question there was no, ‘Wow,’ that’s it, that’s the guy, no. So it’s going to be a cumulative body of work.”

Did anyone play well enough last night to solidify a spot on this team?
“Hmmmm. Again, its’ the cumulative body of work so it would have had to have been a spectacular effort. And I don’t think in a 30-3 game you’re going to find too many spectacular efforts.”

How do you evaluate guys who have not played?
“E.J. (Biggers) and Regus (Arrelious Benn), we have a lot of tape to go on. We also have all our OTA time and minicamp stuff to go on. So even though it’s not padded, at their positions, it’s easier to not be padded and make evaluations. Jordan Shipley, we don’t’ have a lot of history with. We have video from really two years ago, when he had a lot of production, so you look at that and say, OK, where is he with his recovery from the surgery. So we’ll look at all those things. And I think I said it to this group, the wide receiver battle is one that we think, that will be an interesting one, how it shapes out. Number one, how many do we keep and then in that number, who is it. Those are the interesting deals. You have three magic numbers – 61, 53 and 46 and they’re all tied together in so many different ways, so a lot of things depend. It’s a little bit like a flow chart.”

How many can you comfortably keep at WR?
“It all depends on what they do other than play receiver. If they’re a multiple teams guy, then he has added value, and then what value do we have him at corner, at wide out, you have different body types. We’re fortunate that a guy like Regis (Arrelious Benn)is I think a top flight receiver or is going to be and yet is a really good teams player, so he has a value and we need to get him back healthy and little by little he’s inching back, so he can help us. I don’t know, is week one going to be too soon, we’ll have to see. I hope he’s ready, though.”

Is the decision difficult on the wide receiver group since it has been a great group all the way through?
“It’s a tough group to evaluate because there’s been production through every level. And one guy who played well last night is Sammie (Stroughter). I though he played one of his better games this preseason so throw that in the hopper. It’s a good battle.”

How is E.J. Biggers in terms of his injury?
“He’s getting better. He’s not going to (be ready for the) opening game, but he’s going to be early in the season and I’m anxious to get him back because I thought he did some good things and grasped what we were doing well but then it’s just such a shut down for a long time. I mean the first practice, to lose both of them on the same play, it’s a shame. But you move forward.”

What’s Friday going to be like for you?
“It’s difficult because it’s people’s lives but we’re going to do what’s best for the Bucs. There are guys that have been with us since we arrived here and for Mark (Dominik) and the rest of the organization guys have been around a lot longer than that. And you don’t know when you make a personnel move what it’s going to do to that guys’ career. Might it end his career, might he move on and have a great career somewhere else. But when you do it here, it ends his career here at least temporarily, so I don’t take it lightly but on the same hand, this is part of what we do and we need to get the best 53 players for our organization, for the Bucs, and that goes into all the three different combinations that we talked about with the magic numbers.”

Have any defensive lineman played their way into the mix?
“Well, yes and no. I think some have done some good things but there’s not a huge mix to play into. It’s not an area where we have a lot of depth. So it’s one area, where when you get behind the front line guys, it gets a little thin.”

Is that why you’ve been judicious with Amobi Okoye?
“I think it depends on when you ask me that question. If you ask me two weeks ago or today. That’s changed over the course of the preseason. You try to take different approaches as you go. That’s one of the juggling acts you have to do as a head coach. You got this guy at this position and that guy at that position and no we can’t get a team out here for practice because we’re only one deep at that spot so you try to nudge it along a little bit never jeopardizing the player’s health, but you can be a little more cautious at times and we’ve tried to do that, but at the end of the day, you’ve got to go out and earn a spot.”

- Victoria Horchak contributed to this report
Last modified on Thursday, 30 August 2012 19:45

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  • avatar

    Cut down to 51 and add two offensive linemen tonite as well ! There must be someone out there to step up from Larsen / Hardman. Come on now Coach ! Dan Koppen ? Ok,he's a center so maybe not.
  • avatar

    Thanks Dory - I know PR is trying to get some answers but I share the frustration of the other fans - we see our team getting much better (with arguably the best OL in the league) and then DJ goes out and we all wait for the front office to do something about it so we can still be nearly as excited about the year - and we get answers like the above - with a performance by DJ's apparent replacemnts like we saw against Washington - it's all very frustrating. If I was in the front office after that performance by the OL (the apparent plan A), I would be on the phone to every GM in the league inquiring about OL help. I hope that our guys are and the radio silence and diversion we get in these interviews is just that. Dallas just traded a 7th round pick for Ryan Cook - he's no DJ but would be our best option at RG - we seem content now to trade away players for 7th round picks (K2/Price) - we should be doing the opposite! I understand building through the draft - that's good - but if Freeman/Martin/Nicks gets hurt this year because our RG can't block, then how much does our draft building plan get set back....a little upgrade with a guy that can play for a year and be a good back up thereafter for not a lot of money (e.g. Ryan Cook) is all we need.
  • avatar

    Ms. Leblanc, random question: I know that Pewter Report would report any activity if you guys knew of it. My question is more of what you or any other writer over there thinks. Should the Bucs not be pursuing an OG left in the FA market, maybe a guy like Jake Scott or Anthony Herrera? These guys are no Davin Joseph and never will be, but they are almost certainly upgrades over Meredith and Larsen. Both of these guys provided solid if unspectacular play for their respective teams on a consistent basis over the last few years. Is the team stubbornly determined to comb the waiver wire and look within for Joseph's short term replacement? Cuz it seems to me that the team at least needs to be looking into giving tryouts to these veterans, who at this point would have to be happy with low-end one year deals. Would going with one of them be better than an undrafted free agent that gets cut from some other team? I think so.
  • avatar

    Did Coach ever give a straight answer? That's had to hard to ask the Coach anything because he goes somewhere else and talks about nothing and you are wondering if you are on another planent. Hey Coach how was your day. well I never look at it that way as we are a work in process and maybe he'll start to see why we go to the bathroom sometimes if of course you studied the tape on a play that scrambles the kicker to the backside of the frontlines in order to receive a pass after you hold the ball for the kicker. It is a work in process. Thank you guys and I'm glad I got to answer all your questions in detail because we probably won't do any of that stuff anyway. Really tough questions and I have to go now to wash my under patties before dinner.
  • avatar

    Someone needs to ask coach how the most recent trade/PUP/IR rules translate to Daquan Bowers...As I understand it, we're allowed more time now for a player to be on the PUP list...that can only be good for Bowers having a chance to play this year...however I'd rather see him next year than being hurt again on the field this year if thats the potential price...GO BUCS!!!!!
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