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Bucs Beat

Rick Stroud, Greg Auman and Matt Baker

Winning suits Bucs and Morris



Bucs coach Raheem Morris got rid of the Bucs losing streak -- and that knot that has lived in his stomach for seven weeks.

"No pressure is off. The only thing that comes off is that knot that sits in your stomach,'' Morris said. "You don't have it. It's really good, it's fun. This week will be a little more fun in the building. It's fun Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. All that stuff gets a little better. A little more exciting.

"This league is competitive and everybody wants to be in it. And the only way you stay in it is if you play well. All the guys in my locker room, they're so young, they're all fighting for their jobs. Everybody. Coaches, players, myself. We know that. So there is no quit. We don't have a veteran led team. We don't have a bunch of guys who can shut it down and say I'll be back next year because my contract says this. We just don't have that.''

Morris praised rookie quarterback Josh Freeman for his composure during his first NFL start. Freeman threw three touchdowns Sunday in Tampa Bay's 38-28 win over the Green Bay Packers.

After the game, Morris said he did not do anything to celebrate but received a lot of text messages and some phone calls from coaches and former players like Derrick Brooks and Warren Sapp.

"I took Sapp's call because if I don't take his phone call, he'll yell at me,'' Morris said.

"There just wasn't a knot in my stomach. I do the same thing, I go home, see the family, chill out and watch other people be miserable. For me, it's the same deal. I didn't go out and throw a party or tear up Tampa.

"It was special getting the first win, it was good getting the first win.

Morris said the Bucs record will prevent them from spending too much time enjoying their win over the Packers. Tampa Bay plays at Miami Sunday.

"I don't think we can. We are 1-7. We're not competing for the NFC Championship game yet,'' Morris said. "They've got to come in this week and grow off what they did the week before. Hard work paid off. How they practiced last week in pads paid off.''

Morris did admit that he has instituted a little more discipline on his team lately. He took away their hip hop music during stretching and instituted a dress code for games.

"There's little things you can take way from these guys,'' Morris said. "Make them come to the game looking the right way, make them look like winners. Maybe yesterday the dress code changed everything.

"It's more of my little punishment deals. The music can come back. You can go to work in jeans and nice shirt and you're still the same person, but for me, it was more of a punishment deal. People might want their jeans back. People might want their music back. So in able to do that, we've got to do some winning. We've got to turn some things around. We've got to pay more attention to detail. That was my thought process. Just tighten up the screws a little bit to get these guys to tighten up the screws a little bit.''


[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 3:48pm]


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