Eric Page Explains Late-Game ScrewupNovember 13th, 2013
Monday Night Football cameras captured Greg Schiano in the face of punt returner Eric Page after his needless, seemingly stupid unnecessary roughness foul that came after he hit a Dolphins player following a punt he waved off bounced out of bounds.
It was a fourth-quarter mistake that could have been critical.
Page told Joe today that his screwup was uglier than it appeared. When the ball bounced, Page immediately broke to the Dolphins player to block him in order to prevent the guy from downing the ball inside the 10.
“It went out of bounds and it was too late for me. I kind of already went and hit him. I mean, you know, I just got to be smarter than that,” Page said.
“It just looked a lot worse than what it was because [the Dolphins player] stopped running. If he continues to run, he kind of can shield his way off. But, you know, he stopped, when the ball bounced he just stopped. And I kept going because I thought the ball was going to be in bounds, so I think that made it a little bit worse. … I saw it bounce in front of me and I kind of just took my eyes off it and went for him.”
Page said Schiano lectured him on playing smarter.
Joe hopes Schiano stays confident in Page. Joe sees a ton of upside there. He only recently turned 22 years old, and Page ranks 10th in the NFL among punt returners with 10 or more attempts. Page has returned 18 punts for 202 yards, an 11.2-yards-per-return average. He’s got one fumble, but so do eight of the nine guys ranked ahead him.
The development of Page is a feather in the cap of the New Schiano Order, and it should continue.