Schiano Sought Unlikely Punt Scenario

December 10th, 2012

Greg Schiano was grilled by a Bucs-fan caller to his radio show tonight about the now infamous 3rd-and-8 run up the middle for no gain yesterday — on the Bucs’ 33 yard line with 2:55 remaining and the Bucs leading the Eagles 21-16.

The fan hated the playcall and wanted to know what Schiano was thinking.

The leader of the New Schiano Order explained that he ran up the middle to lessen the chance of a turnover and he was looking for a subsequent punt from Michael Koenen that would pin the Eagles inside their 20 yard line. Schiano said he had confidence his defense could stop a timeout-free Nick Foles to close out the game and that confidence was the driving force of his decision.

Well, the punt part of the equation didn’t sit well with Joe.

Essentially, Schiano was looking for a net punt from Koenen of 47 yards or better — from the Bucs’ 33 to the Eagles’ 20 or less. But the problem is the Bucs’ net average on punts is only 37 yards this season and, statistically, the Bucs have one of the worst punt-cover units in the NFL.

So given those numbers, Joe finds Schiano’s goal of a booming punt to be unrealistic. (Koenen’s eventual punt was 31 yards with no return.)

And if Schiano expected such a booming punt, then surely he expected it to be returned, which is what happens to long punts. That would have been a far more dangerous scenario than calling a safe pass for Josh Freeman to throw on third down. The Bucs have such safe playcalls in their playbook — Schiano admitted that on the air — perhaps something like sprinting Freeman right and giving him a run or throw-to-the-right-sideline option.

Joe understands Schiano believed more in his league-worst pass defense than in Freeman to win the game for him, but the big-punt fantasy never should have been part of the thought process.

32 Responses to “Schiano Sought Unlikely Punt Scenario”

  1. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    At this point, I hope he learns his lesson and doesn’t make the same mistake again. You have to be able to put teams away. I don’t care if we have the ’85 Bears defense, you run at least a safe pass play that has at least a chance of picking up a first down. That run play had absolutely no chance whatsoever. We should have just taken a knee. At this point, we should ask ourselves this: If Tom Brady were the QB, would you give him the ball with a chance to win? We make every QB look like Brady.

  2. Drew Says:

    Funny that you mention Tom Brady. This one is for the Josh Freeman lovers. Before I became a Buc fan I was a die hard Patriot fan and remember the came vividly where Bledsoe was decleated and Brady took over. Brady the back-up QB took over and displayed outstanding accuracy and consistency and this has not changed since that fateful play. He had the IT factor that Freeman has yet to display. A late round draft pick, virtually unknown and is the top tier QB in the league today.

    So tell me when Josh will get there after 4 years. You either have it or you don’t. It can not be taught.

    Freeman is light years away from being in the class of Brady, Rodgers, Schaub and even the rookie Wilson. Given enough time, maybe in his next lifetime he may get there.

  3. Drew Says:

    You heard it here. The Buc’s will draft a QB in 2013.

  4. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    ^yeah, maybe in round 6 or 7

  5. dcbucsfan Says:

    Yesterday’s game is a prime example of what happens when you play not to lose instead of playing to WIN!

    Schiano & Co. have cost the Bucs a few wins this season with suspect play calling and playing scared.

    Damn, who makes these calls? Is there anyone on the sidelines

  6. Brian Says:

    Well, you can’t go by the net averag on punts because a lot of the time they are trying to pin people inside the 10 and that is short punts.

    Josh was having a horrific time with his acuracy yesterday so of course Shiano didn’t have the utmost confidence in him.

    Lastly, i’m sure Shiano didn’t expect Koenen to shank it either. The ball was very very far out of bounds.

  7. Keith Says:

    Of course you can go by net. … Koenen isn’t having a very good year by any stretch.

  8. kh Says:

    F off Drew – I hate fans like you that are against Bucs player against other fans. If you’re a Bucs fan you should also be a Freeman fan until he wears another jersey. Please go back to being a “die-hard” Patriots fan, we don’t need fans like you. For the life of me I don’t understand how a die-hard fan could ever switch teams in the first place but I digress.

    You act as though everyone else has delusions that Freeman is the best QB in the league when no one does. I personally had high hopes for Freeman this year and I don’t think he’s really lived up to them but it’s not right to pin all the blame on him either. Josh could defintely do better to be more aware in the pocket but it would also help if our offensive line could hold their blocks long enough to allow plays to develop (like what happens when we play defense.) If Josh had as much time as Foles did late in the game he would do the same. A lot (not all but) of his inaccurate throws are a result of pressure (1) or (2) not being on the same page as his WR’s (that’s inexcusable at this point but again not all on Josh.)

    Josh has shown in glimpses that he has IT, he’s got enough 4th quarter comebacks to show that already. As a Bucs fan I will support Josh until his career as a Buc is over.

    Now onto this topic, I agree completely with Joe – I was fuming yesterday after we ran on 3rd and 8, you have to play to win the game then and there in my opinion, putting faith in our god awful defense was foolhardy at best.

  9. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Great post kh!

  10. kh Says:

    It’s easy to monday morning QB but on 3rd and 8 in that scenario I would have liked to have seen a bubble screen to Vincent Jackson. Should be high percentage play and I think VJ could make one guy miss and get 8 yards easy. If some DB jumps it then just throw it away. I know you hate to stop the clock but that would be worth the risk.

    I don’t understand why we don’t run more bubble screens for VJ in those types of down and distance, the Giants do it with some frequency with Hakeem Nicks and Cruz. As we’ve seen this year most DBs have a pretty hard time tackling VJ in space like that. Tackling him from behind is another story though 🙁

  11. canadianbuc Says:

    If a coach has more confidence in his defense more then is qb there has to be a problem (especially with our defense). We all no that Josh has had a couple of rough games maybe putting the ball and the game in his hands on that 3rd down would really show what he’s made of and heck raise his confidence if we got the 1st. It could of turned our season around with his confidence up, a call like that definitely lowered his confidence and I think Schiano needed to show some guts, I really hope this is not the style were going to play for the rest of Schianos tenure

  12. Hawaiian Buc Says:


    That’s not really V-Jax’s game.He’s a long strider, not a bubble screen type receiver. I think a bootleg play with a run-pass option would be a better call, but I’m no coordinator. I do know that running it into an 8 man front is not a good call.

  13. canadianbuc Says:

    not going to lie I am still in shock from that loss. Man is it tough to no your seasons over with 3 games to go smh

  14. dcbucsfan Says:

    @ canadianbuc – look on the brightside. Last year our season was over in October! It’s getting better!

  15. SacBucs Says:

    We had a better 3rd down percentage with Preston Parker..That little dude was tough as nails. Anyway Rosco P Coltrain would be better for the bubble screens people.This whole year is on the coaching and the GM for keeping player who are not nfl caliber. We abuse Eli for 3 quarters then start playing prevent..The pass rush like to have killed Romo then the cowgirls start doing drag routes on that weak coverage… lost by 6! Locking RG3 down..That hit by Barron woooo(which he was flagged for) We was smashing the deadskins then with minutes left we go into that horrible prevent defense..Bye week Beat The Chiefs impressively! Then I mean they pull out that ugly 3 man rush uhhhh! Drew carve us up with that same drag route spit across the middle..Colston/Lance Moore all dam day long..Then the f-ing refs cheat us..

    All I Know is the Buccaneers! Im beginning wonder if players even want to play in Tampa. Are we the Raiders of the NFC? Is this where players say if I go to Tampa my career is over! Is that why most high price free agent are afraid to sign? Since Gruden there hasn’t been to many.

  16. Bucsfan4ever55 Says:

    Right KH, sorry to say Drew but your just not a smart guy. The IT factor is something like when your down with 10 seconds left in the 4th by 8 points and you PASS for a TD then you PASS for a two point conversion with 0:00 seconds left and you PASS for a game winning TD on the first drive of overtime. That is the IT factor, d*****s. and JOE, you say good quarterbacks never get shutout in a whole half. I thought Matt schaub was a playoff, pro bowl, pro bowl MVP, nfl leading passer(not this year) quarterback. He got shutout in the first half tonight. So eat your words. It’s a team game

  17. Eric Says:

    I dunno we got Jackson and nicks in FA.

    The third and eight call sucked IMO, but we really got outplayed for most of the game, so it’s not as simple as a bad play call. Never should have come down to that.

  18. SacBucs Says:

    to many players interested in coming to play for the Bucs!

  19. SacBucs Says:

    Eric we got vjax and nicks this year..Since Keyshawn and our Championship team..who has wanted to play in Tampa? From 03 until now! I have seen teams go to the SB rebuild and get back to SB. We barely even sniff the playoffs from terrible coaching drafting and decision from the organization for a decade now..When will it stop?

  20. Andrew Says:

    I agree with kh. fuk off Drew your not really a bucs fan.

  21. J 2.0 Says:

    Ok, so I’m not the only one that just saw Steve Young say on live Sportscenter, “The Texans think they have the bigest d*** in the league, clearly not the case.” Right? Anyone else saw that go down?

  22. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    Free agents will sign where the money is. It even helps that Florida has no state income tax. We didn’t get many free agents because we weren’t paying the money to free agents. Hopefully that is a thing of the past.

    Although I completely agree we have drafted and selected poorly since the SB, we’ve done a lot better recently. We hit homeruns this year with Martin and David, and Barron will end up being a stud. McCoy has had a Pro Bowl worthy year. Mike Williams has been very very good. Clayborn is a stud. Jury is still out on Freeman, but he’s better than Griese, Simms, and Gradkowski combined (which doesn’t say much). The core is there, but there’s still a ways to go. This time next year we will know who we really will be. It would also be nice if our best players would stop going on IR.

  23. SacBucs Says:

    Buc fans I’m not the brightest apple in the bunch but I refuse to believe I’M STUPID!!

    Charles Woodson didn’t want to play buc ball…Albert Hansworth didn’t at first until he f-up. I feel like players make going to tampa a last resort..Aint that Florida sun beach and palm trees..

    Gruden tried to build a winner here with FA every year. First and Second team players.

    First Team List

    Jure (way to)vicous-Giants
    Spires-Detriot/ I could be wrong here..I go off my brain not google.
    Those key additions made us a SuperBowl contender. Although its sad we had let Dunn go. He deserved A ring!

    Second Team Players
    Rudd-Viking/browns i could be wrong.

    My point is Gru was trying to build us up. When Raheem got behind the wheel we stop making moves. We can’t win witg a bunch of kids!

  24. Capt. Jean Lafitte Says:

    Now that the Bucs really don’t have a legitimate shot at the playoffs, I personally, think they should should relax and start jockeying for a higher draft pick for next year. I wouldn’t have my guys all jacked-up to win at any cost for what are really meaningless games at this point. After losing 11 players to I.R already and hoping they can be back to training camp, I think I would be worried about losing anymore. Especially players like VJacksons, LDavid’s, DMartin’s, MWilliams’ etc… We need this team healthy next year.

  25. espo Says:

    Stats aside, Koenan is an excellent punter and I have no problem with anyone having faith in him pinning a team deep, even with a questionable coverage team. It shouldn’t have even gone there though. Schiano has a pair. I won’t dispute that. In the name of all that is football, use said pair and put that crappy team our of their misery.

  26. SacBucs Says:

    You better spam my comments Joe..Im the truth

  27. guns4roses Says:

    Koenen’s leg was worn out from the first half.

  28. Buc Fan #238 Says:

    I find it funny that people are angry at one call that forced the defense to do their job yet those same people made excuses for Raheem Morris when he got blown out.

    Tony Dungy would have done the same conservative thing with Josh Freemam playing like Shaun King.

  29. Raphael Says:

    Coach Shiano gave away that game with the stupid play call and purposely putting it on our vaunted secondary…. and Freeman always does well when it’s all on the line …..Drew your a moron..

  30. Raphael Says:

    Lmao at the s.king comparison….lol. What a joke

  31. CC Says:

    Just a few weeks ago everybody was saying Freemans a pro bowler and Schiano is coach of the year. This coaching staff has made chicken salad out of chicken s**t on the O line. The run D is #1 in the league.Last year worst d in history of Bucs. We get a couple of people who can cover and get our O line back and we will be fine.

  32. Meh Says:

    It was a terrible, gutless call. You can’t pin the loss on any one thing, but the poor calls at the end of the game definitely deserve some of the blame.