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Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Greg Schiano defends decision to designate LeGarrette Blount Bucs' short-yardage back



When the Bucs opted for running back LeGarrette Blount over Doug Martin in Sunday’s much-debated goal-line situation, it actually was a decision that was made long ago.

Coach Greg Schiano said, based on preseason and training camp performance, the coaching staff designated Blount as the team’s short-yardage running back weeks ago.

“For us, you go back to the preseason and the Miami game, when we pounded it away, then you go back to the (regular-season) Washington game and he pounds it in there and puts it in the end zone,” Schiano said. “After the preseason, we kind of felt that way and then we kept going with it.”

In the wake of Blount’s failure to reach the end zone on three straight tries Sunday, the Bucs will re-evaluate his role in such situations, Schiano said.

“All these decisions, whether it’s who’s playing receiver, or running back, kick returner, front line – doesn’t matter – everything is constantly being evaluated,” he said. “And as you have a larger body of results to make decisions off, you hope that we make the best decisions with more information. And that’s what we’ll do.”

Schiano didn’t heap all the blame on Blount. He said on one play – he didn’t specify which – the Bucs had a schematic issue that led to the play being stuffed. He also said the offensive line’s push might have partly been an issue.

Asked whether Blount’s struggles as a short-yardage back in previous seasons were taken into consideration, Schiano said, “I’ve watched some of the tapes, but I’m not going to sit here and say that I (assume) that is what a player can do. There are different circumstances that go behind scheme, where your mind is – all those things.”

[Last modified: Monday, October 22, 2012 2:45pm]


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