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Bucs Beat

Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Don't blame Raheem Morris, some Bucs say



Before taking the podium at his post-game press conference on Sunday and telling the assembled media to point fingers at him, Bucs coach Raheem Morris accepted the blame for Sunday’s loss in front of his team.

But after some reflection, players this morning began accepting the fact they should bear much of the blame for Tampa Bay’s current three-game losing streak.

It can’t be on him,” DE Michael Bennett said. “He’s not in the game playing. At some point in time, it’s not about the coaches. It’s about the players. It doesn’t matter what play the coach calls. We still have to execute. Clearly we’re not executing the plays the coaches are calling and we need to find a way.”

Said CB Aqib Talib: “He’s the head coach. That’s what he’s supposed to say. But we’re out there (playing). We’re the players. It’s on everybody.”

The Bucs, a team comprised mostly of young players, have been a group that’s responded to Morris in his first two seasons despite their inexperience. He is well-liked in the locker room and popular among his players.

His players aren’t oblivious to the scrutiny Morris is under.

“We have to take the heat off of him,” Bennett said. “He’s getting blamed for a lot of stuff. But it’s the players. As a defense, we have to play better. As an offense, we have to play better. As special teams, we have to play better.”

[Last modified: Monday, November 14, 2011 4:50pm]


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