Bucs' Penn upset by media's treatment of Freeman
TAMPA -- Bucs left tackle Donald Penn vented his frustration in a national radio interview Tuesday night, and again Wednesday said he's unhappy by the way the media has treated his close friend, former starting quarterback Josh Freeman.
"Y'all. The media," Penn said. "Y'all are trying to find every way to try to (tarnish) his character and try to make him seem like he's not a good guy, like he's not a good person, like this is all his fault. That's y'all reporting the stuff. Don't try to switch it up like it's not y'all."
Penn took exception to ESPN's Chris Mortensen revealing that Freeman was a Stage 1 participant in the NFL's drug program, which prompted Freeman to disclose in response that he takes medication for ADHD and has never tested positive for any banned substance. Penn spoke about it in an interview on Sirius Radio on Tuesday, but didn't like fielding questions about it in the locker room Wednesday.
"Are we going to talk about the Bucs? Do you want to know about what we need to do going against Philly or anything about that? Because this Freeman stuff is getting old," Penn said. "Y'all media is trying to bring it down. Y'all still talking about it. How long has it been? It's over. Y'all are still talking about it. There's nothing we can do about it now. ... It's still an issue. I'm tired of talking about it."
Penn said he believes the Bucs' bye week is well-timed after the team's 0-4 start, allowing players to step back and re-evaluate what they can do to help the team get back to winning football.
"We got to sit back this week, watch a lot of stuff, went through all of our run plays throughout the whole year, went through almost all our pass protection throughout the whole year, got to see the things we're doing good and the things we're doing bad," Penn said. "It was great, especially when you're 0-4 and you lost three close games. We couldn't plan it out any better."