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Bucs Training Camp: Schiano Defends Freeman

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano spoke to the media Monday afternoon after training camp.

Schiano was questioned about starting quarterback Josh Freeman and how he preformed at practice. Schiano came to his Freeman's defense and suggested that all the inaccurate throws were to prevent a sack and that there is a small window between a great catch and an incomplete pass.

(On if quarterback Josh Freeman struggled today)

I didnt see him as that. There were a couple of balls where the guy was covered and he threw it at their knees, on purpose so he didnt take the sack. We train [the quarterback] to do that. I thought he actually threw the ball pretty well today. I dont know, maybe he didnt think so. As I looked at it, that one, OK, thats fine, the fade, OK, thats fine. Some of those would have been tremendous catches, like the one-handed grab on the sideline. Those are great throws, the guy makes the catch or he doesnt, but those windows are [very small]. I kind of felt like he threw it pretty well myself, but I didnt see the tape, again, Im watching a lot of things, you probably had a better view of it than I did.

[youtube_sc url="http://youtu.be/1mCOPNeDtbU"]

HEAD COACH GREG SCHIANO

(On the distance of kicker Derek Dimkes made field goal)

Somewhere in the low 50s. You know, it was a bonzai hurry up situation, so probably 53 or 54 [yards].

(On if cornerback Darrelle Revis had a scheduled day off)

Yes. He went four (practice days) in a row. He wasnt off, he was inside doing strengthening. Part of the rehab is weight training and those sorts of things, balance things, so [its] all to plan.

(On todays practice)

It was good; you cant get enough of that. Obviously, you get down in that area, its a lot easier to win by sixes than by threes, so we cant work enough on it, and vice versa. Defensively, its a lot easier when youre holding to threes than allowing sixes, so that got installed last night and we go out and operate on it today and now it will be part of the daily routine.

(On the two-minute drive)

Again, when youre the head coach, ones victory is anothers defeat, right? So it was a good back and forth; [a] good completion there on the fourth-down play and then certainly a good completion to Mike [Williams] there to put us in field goal range. Not a good penalty to move us almost out of having an opportunity to get in field goal range.

(On wide receiver Chris Owusu)

Well hes getting better. Well see; we havent played a game, but [he is] certainly a much better player than he was last year. I think at the end of the year when we got him in that Atlanta game, its a good thing to end the seasonhim getting some real game action. Sometimes you think youre ready and when you get in [a game] its a whole different world. That gives you that motivation, that extra motivation, and hes improved.

(On cornerback Johnthan Banks grasp of the defense)

He does have a good football aptitude, so that helps him. Then you throw on top of it [that] corner is probably the easiest position to break in as a rookie, so those two things Now, I say easiest, but let me backtrack on that. Assignment-wise, [cornerback is] the easiest. Physically, its by far the hardest job, I think maybe next to quarterback, on the field. Youre covering the best athletes in the world. They know where theyre going and you dont. Thats a tall order, but assignment-wise thats the easiest [position] on the defense. And no doubt we have talked about so many times, when youre not certain on what youre doing [that] takes a great player and it makes them good, takes a good one and makes them average; you just chop it down. The thinking process slows down the physical [skills], so the more you feel comfortable with [the assignments], and feel you know it, the faster youre going to be able to play.

(On cornerback Rashaan Melvin)

Hes still a rookie. Lets see him when he gets in a game against another color jersey, but so far all I can judge him on is what hes done here and I think hes shown some good stuff.

(On the schedule for Tuesdays day off)

Well its all voluntary; it is their day off, per the CBA. The facility is open, theres treatment, and treatment can be mandatory, but, other than that, it is their choice. If theyre healthy and they dont feel its not the worst thing for them to get away from here for a little bit. Coaches its a little differentwe work.

(On safety Cody Grimm)

Codys healthy and hes in the best shape of his career right now, so that helps. And he needs to be, because its an intense competition at the safety spot. Codys a very smart football player, whether its on special teams or on defense. I sit next to him a lot in the meetings and you can hear him saying the answers under his breath. He gets it and thats what allows him to really be a competitive player, because there are guys that are faster and bigger, and all those things, but he really is a good football player. So its going to be hard, like I said. Were going to have to cut some good players at multiple positions, God willing everyone stays healthy.

(On defensive tackle Derek Landri playing with the first team)

Well [it was] part of a rotation, but, I mean, we went out and got Derek Landri because we believed he could help us. Dereks a good player, an experienced player, a vet; he just had the health issues in the spring. As he now knocks the rust off, hes done some good things. So, again, that competition, you know Gibby [defensive tackle Gary Gibson] will be back Wednesday, and I think [defensive tackle Akeem] Spence is playing well. Theres a lot of good fighting going on in there.

(On the next step for linebacker Lavonte David)

We always want to improve, right? Lavonte had a tremendous season (in 2012), youre correct, and I think the world of the guy, not only as a player, but as a man. So I just trust that through his work ethic and his preparation, hes going to get better. Hes stronger, hes faster, which is hard to be. [He] works his tail off, great work ethic.

(On if safety Mark Barron is taking on some of the assignments of former safety Rond Barber)

We have a bunch of guys mixing it up in there, but, yeah, Mark is doing that. You know Mark did that a lot at Alabama and he was very, very effective. But Rond, you know, he had done it for [16] years. But I think its a pretty good transition because you have a guy thats comfortable there and hes already made some plays. And the nice thing about Mark is he has such good length, so when he is trying to cover guys in the under coverage he can reach and tap those balls down where a shorter guy cant.

(On safety depth as it applies to moving players around)

Again it comes down to the 53 [players on the active roster] and the 46 [players dressed on game day]. You know, those two numbers. [Out of] 46, how many DBs can you dress? Youd like to dress 12 or 13, but you cant. So then its always, Is it 10, is it nine, is it eight? Guys have to be able to play multiple positions, so thats why we cross train so many guys for game day.

(On the difficulties of a player playing both tailback and fullback)

Physically, they have to have the traits to do it and, then, I guess emotionally would be the word, they have to be able to come to grips that Im used to running it, now Im blocking. And if you have the right person, its not a problem, [but] if you dont have the right person, it is a problem. I think those two guys [Brian Leonard and Peyton Hillis] are willing to do whatever it takes to help us win, so were in good shape there.

(On linebacker Jonathan Casillas and the competition at outside linebacker)

Hes a run-and-hit guy now. I mean, he plays fast and so does [linebacker] Dekoda [Watson]. So youve got two guys that are similar, very similar, and theyre both very good special teams players. I think weve got two guys that are valuable. Theyre both going to have a hat on Sundays because theyre going to play on special teams and play linebacker, so two good guys to have on your football team.

(On if a healthy offensive line can be a special unit)

Sure. There was a time last year where I said that. Then bang, bang [injuries to Pro Bowl guards Davin Joseph and Carl Nicks]. But, yes, to answer your question. I think other guys around them have gotten better. [Tackle] Donald Penn has gotten better and I think [tackle] Demar Dotson has gotten better, as well as [center] Jeremy Zuttah. So I think they are all improving, as well as getting these two guys [Joseph and Nicks] back. Ive heard [offensive line coach] Bob [Bostad] say it often, [offensive lineman Jamon] Meredith, [guard/center Ted] Larsen, those guys gained valuable reps in the absence of Carl and Davin. Hopefully the offensive line as a whole got better through that. Although it hurt having to go through the pain, hopefully we are better for it now.

(On if quarterback Josh Freeman struggled today)

I didnt see him as that. There were a couple of balls where the guy was covered and he threw it at their knees, on purpose so he didnt take the sack. We train [the quarterback] to do that. I thought he actually threw the ball pretty well today. I dont know, maybe he didnt think so. As I looked at it, that one, OK, thats fine, the fade, OK, thats fine. Some of those would have been tremendous catches, like the one-handed grab on the sideline. Those are great throws, the guy makes the catch or he doesnt, but those windows are [very small]. I kind of felt like he threw it pretty well myself, but I didnt see the tape, again, Im watching a lot of things, you probably had a better view of it than I did.

Source: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Media



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