Schiano says he 'absolutely not,' source of Freeman drug program breach
Bucs coach Greg Schiano said he was 'absolutely not,' the source of confidential information leaked to the media about Josh Freeman's participation in stage one of the league's substance abuse program.
Freeman said he voluntarily agreed to be randomly tested after switching from Adderall to Ritalin to treat ADHD. In a statement Monday, Freeman said he passed 46 league-administered drug tests over the last 18 months at One Buc Place.
ESPN's Chris Mortensen first reported Freeman's involvement in the league's substance abuse program Monday.
Schiano would not comment on whether he was aware of Freeman's frequent participation in random drug tests after being hired by the Bucs last season or if he confronted his starting quarterback.
"I really don't want to get into what Josh's thoughts are about how things got out,'' Schiano said. "I know what I've done and I'm 100 percent comfortable with my behavior. One hundred percent.''
When asked if he was the source of the breach, Schiano said, 'absolutely not.'
In his statement Monday, Freeman accused members of the organization who may have witnessed his drug tests at One Buc Place of making "hurtful and incorrect assumptions and chosen to disseminate inaccurate and very disturbing information.''
”It is a shame that when times have gotten tough, people have chosen to attack the character of others, rather than supporting each other,'' Freeman said.
Schiano took exception to Freeman's accusations Tuesday.
"Certainly, that's not what you want to happen at all,'' Schiano said. "But alluding to the accusations, I don't appreciate that, either, when someone is accused of something that's not true. At the end of the day, it's not a good thing and we need to just keep moving forward. We're beyond it.''
Freeman was at practice Tuesday but had little participation during the portion open to the media. The Bucs have a bye week before hosting the Philadelphia Eagles Oct. 13.
Bucs general manager Mark Dominik is in the process of contacting 31 teams to determine if any have an interest in trading for Freeman.
"Mark is doing his job and he's working to accomodate Josh and the whole situation,'' Schiano said. "But that's our job. That's what we do. So if you're a Buc, you do what the Bucs do and that's how we're going to go.''
Schiano said if was hard to determine how the Freeman saga has affected the team during its 0-4 start.
"I think we have a strong locker room. Our guys are locked in on what we need to do.
"How can I tell you if it has any or one percent effect on our team? That I can't with all 100 percent tell you. I don't sense that. I think we have a football team that's very angry about how we started the season and we're trying to get it retified.''
Schiano said having Freeman at One Buc Place under the circumstances has not been uncomfortable.
"It's not, it really isn't uncomfortable,'' Schiano said. "I understand the business end of the NFL and I believe he does as well. I can't speak for him. It's not uncomfortable for me and I don't believe it is for him with our own relationship.''