Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Bucs to fill bye week with self-evaluation

TAMPA — Bucs coach Greg Schiano cut his players loose Wednesday for their bye-week breaks, and the locker room was practically empty a mere half-hour after practice.

But even as players dispersed to visit friends and family or simply lay on their couches, Schiano and his coaches have more work to do.

At the core of their mission this week: taking a look in the mirror. What have the Bucs done well in their four games to date? Where have they come up short?

Now's the time to take stock in a more comprehensive way and apply those lessons to the remaining 12 games.

"There are good things that get lost when you lose, just like there are bad things that get lost when you win," Schiano said. "As the head coach, it's my job to make sure it doesn't happen at any kind of substantial level."

The self-scouting, as Schiano calls it, involves looking for trends. Rather than looking simply at their most recent game in its totality, coaches might, for example, examine similar plays from all their games and find the common flaws.

"We can do that any time we like, but there's time constraints," Schiano said, citing the need to game plan for weekly opponents. "So, generally you're looking at … plays from the game you just played and moving forward to the next opponent. It's been a really good exercise and one that we're going to do again. … Every quarter, as you examine your books as a business, you examine your production as a team. It's a good idea."

As for the timing of the bye, which comes rather early, Schiano said he believes it's favorable for his club. After a demanding training camp and even some punishing regular-season practices, Schiano believes his team was in need of a break.

"This group has gone incredibly hard since July 26 until now," he said. "That sounds like a long time ago. They've busted their humps."

But what about the daunting stretch of 12 consecutive games to come?

"It all depends on how healthy you stay," Schiano said. "If you get on a roll and get going, it's great. I don't make the schedule. As hard as we've worked, I'm not sorry. Maybe in Week 10 I'll say I wish we had (a bye) then. Now, I'm glad these guys get an opportunity to get a rest."

MORE TRUEBLOOD? Jeremy Trueblood might have lost his job at right tackle, but it doesn't mean he can't be a starter elsewhere on the offensive line.

Schiano is using the bye to take a look at different line combinations, one of which includes tackles such as Trueblood and Jamon Meredith moving to guard.

After the season-ending injury to Pro Bowl RG Davin Joseph, the team scrambled for a solution and settled on Ted Larsen, who started 14 games over the past two seasons. For the first time in his career, a healthy Trueblood was among the inactive players for Sunday's game against the Redskins.

"We've tried to move 'Blood around because, as I've told you, I love his competitiveness, his fight, his desire," Schiano said. "So, we've moved him around a little bit, taken a look at him at some different spots. … When you lose a guy like Davin, you have to really work to figure out the best way to fill in."

Can Trueblood, at 6 feet 8, 320 pounds, play guard?

"It's done," Schiano said. "There are guys in our division who are doing it. It's a matter of if you are willing to do the things you have to do to get the job done. I know he is. Can he is the question, and we'll figure that out."

FREEMAN SPEAKS: After his mixed performance against the Redskins, QB Josh Freeman reiterated his comfort level in the offense.

"When I look at the offense, I have a lot of confidence in my guys, confidence in myself, in the schemes," he said. "We have a lot of confidence in (offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan) and the plays that he's calling."

Bucs to fill bye week with self-evaluation 10/03/12 [Last modified: Wednesday, October 3, 2012 10:28pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. For starters: Rays at Twins, looking for another with Odorizzi starting


    UPDATE, 12:45: Cash said Robertson was taking better swings Friday and so he wanted to move him up today, liking the idea of having three straight right-handers vs. a LHP they don't know much about. ... Souza was still smiling this morning about his failed dive attempt last night, and the reaction it got. .. The …

  2. Why the Lightning would consider trading Jonathan Drouin

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — This summer, the Lightning could trade one of its most dynamic young players ever.

    Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) celebrates with his team on the bench after beating Chicago Blackhawks goalie Scott Darling (33) to score his second goal of the period and to tie the score at 4 to 4 during second period action at the Amalie Arena in Tampa Monday evening (03/27/17).
  3. Why the Lightning should keep Jonathan Drouin

    Lightning Strikes

    Keep him.

    Jonathan Drouin is live bait. The Lightning is ready to run the hook through him and cast him out there again. Drouin has enough talent for the Lightning to meet some defensive needs in a deal.

    Keep him.

    Lightning wing Jonathan Drouin celebrates after beating Los Angeles Kings goalie Peter Budaj during the first period of Tuesday's win in Tampa. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times]
  4. This Tampa Bay Lightning wing rides the newest wave of fan interaction

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — There are photos of Lightning fan Shaun Egger as a toddler at center ice at the then-Thunderome, aka Tropicana Field. He's played in the Lightning's high school hockey league for Palm Harbor University. But his closest personal encounter with players had been waving through a crowd after a training camp …

    Tampa Bay Lightning player J.T. Brown wears his anti UV glasses as he talks over the headset with a hockey fan while they play against each other on line in an XBOX NHL video game in Brown's game room at his home in south Tampa. The fan chose to be the Washington Capitals and Brown, of course, was the Tampa Bay Lightning. Brown interacts with fans through video game systems as he streams the games live on Twitch with plans for the proceeds to go to charity.
  5. ‘Biggest fight' behind her, Petra Kvitova returns ahead of schedule


    PARIS — Five months after a home invader's knife sliced into her left hand, Petra Kvitova will return to competitive tennis at the French Open, a last-minute decision to make her comeback earlier than expected.

    Petra Kvitova adjusts her hair during a news conference at Roland Garros Stadium, where she will make her tennis return at the French Open. Kvitova's left hand was badly injured by a knife-wielding intruder in December; she has recovered ahead of schedule. [Associated Press]