Schiano: 'I trust Josh'; players-only meeting not about captains' vote
Josh Freeman may have missed the Bucs team photo last week but there is a more clear picture developing about the players'-only meeting held last week prior to the season opener against the Jets.
Special teams captain Andrew Economos said he called the meeting shortly after the captains were announced to help set the tone for the regular season and described it more as a 'pep rally,' than gripe session.
Economos said there was no discussion about the legitimacy of the captain's vote in which Freeman was stripped of his C after three seasons.
"That there was a player’s only meeting was accurate and obviously Josh missing the photo was accurate,'' Economos said. "Other than that, all the other stuff that tried to get spun around, was not.
"I heard a few things that just came out yesterday through Twitter and stuff. The stuff that I saw was just kind of hearsay. There was nothing backing it. Just people talking.''
A report on ProFootballtalk.com said players questioned the accuracy of the vote tabulated by coach Greg Schiano and indicated some believe the Bucs coach may have alter results to prevent Freeman from becoming captain.
Meanwhile, Schiano acknowledged that Freeman not only missed the team photo but has been late for other team events. Schiano said Freeman overslept Sept. 2 and missed the team photo and meeting.
"There’s things that he’s been late for, there’s things that a lot of players have been late for,'' Schiano said of Freeman. "My whole thing is there’s no excuses, just excused absences. I’ll leave it at that without going into our internal way that we handle things. But he wouldn’t be the only one that’s been late for something.''
Schiano said he had not lost any trust in Freeman.
“I do trust Josh,'' Schiano said. "Josh and I share a lot of things together. Yeah.
“When you have mishaps, when you have guys who don’t do things they’re supposed to do when they’re supposed to do it, does it concern me? Sure it does. But the same guy has done a lot of things he’s supposed to do when he’s supposed to do them in clutch situations dating back as late as Sunday. He took the team down and put us in field goal range to win the game. I think everything has to be put in balance. I understand the job you guys have to do. I hope you understand from my standpoint I’m not going to allow anything to get us off preparation for Sunday’s game.''