“The Ultimate Ability”

May 23rd, 2013

Lost in the recent frenzy surrounding Greg Schiano talking about Mike Glennon winning the starting quarterback job was Schiano paying Freeman quite a compliment.

Schiano, via Yahoo! Sports, said Freeman’s ability to keep his eyes downfield is unmatched in Schiano’s decades of football study.

From the standpoint of dealing with pressure, Schiano thinks Glennon knows what he is, and he knows how to deal with what he is. “Some guys can feel the rush and keep their eyes downfield; other guys feel the rush and start looking at the rush,” Schiano said. “Once you start looking at the rush, you are done. You scramble, you get sacked. He has the ability, and Josh [Freeman] has the ultimate ability to keep the eyes downfield. I’ve never seen a guy who is as good at keeping his eyes down the field as Josh. Josh has more mobility.

“It’s toughness in some respects. You keep your eyes downfield, feel the rush closing in, you know you are going to get hit.”

Joe brings this up today because an NFL Films highlight reel posted on NFL.com gives a rare look at Freeman’s eyes in the pocket under a heavy rush against the Chargers last season. You can see it here starting at :33 of the video.

It’s impressive stuff, as Freeman is getting hit and a rush has caved in around him.

Now Joe knows a QB keeping his eyes down the field and hanging in the pocket doesn’t make him great, but they did help Freeman post stunning deep-passing numbers and landed Vincent Jackson in Hawaii.

31 Responses to ““The Ultimate Ability””

  1. Macabee Says:


    In the 3rd paragraph, did you mean that “Schiano thinks Glennon knows what he is” or did you mean Freeman? Because it changes the context of my comment!

  2. ShutTheBucUp Says:

    I really feel like Freeman is the QB of the future in Tampa. He’s had to grow up on the job and there have certainly been growing pains, but he looked like a completely different player last season (sans that ugly stretch). I have a gut feeling he’s ready to take the next step and do it consistently. I definitely didn’t have that feeling last year.

  3. Seth B Says:

    I think last year was Freeman’s 1st year in the offense. By next year, Freeman will consistently know who to go to. Mike Sullivan will groom him into a stud. Eli and Josh’s leadership style are somewhat similar and I think that Sullivan can work with him as a player. That’s really the relationship that matters, not Schiano’s.

  4. WestCoastBucsFan Says:


    I feel the same way but you get slammed around here for being optimistic.

    Really when you evaluate a QB you have to discard any positives from the season and only look at the negatives to see what kind of a quarterback he really is. You know, because elite quarterbacks don’t have bad points in their season. Only bad quarterbacks do. But these naysayers that don’t like to use any context when evaluating a GM actually REQUIRE it to evaluate Freeman. It’s kind of funny really. You have to look at “when” Freeman had his bad moments. (Which I don’t disagree with.) But when evaluating a GM we must discard context.

    I really just can’t wait for the season to get here. It’s only friggin’ MAY!

  5. Walter Says:

    Freeman is pretty good, sucks to see how much the fans don’t seem to like him anymore. Boy, it sure would suck to see him win a ring with another team, I’m sure if we let him go into free agency, a long line of teams will be blowing up his phone trying to win his services.

  6. Couch Fan Says:

    Freeman will never be in a better situation than he is right now. If he cant get it done here, he wont get it done anywhere. And the reason people dont seem to believe in him is because up until this point he hasent got it done regardless of how good you all seem to think he is and regardless of how bad the defense is. As I have been saying, winning cures all.

  7. st augustine Says:

    By no means was Freeman the main precursor as to why V Jax made it to the pro bowl. I probably would give Freeman 10% reason and Vincent Jackson the other 90%. Vincent’s ability to constantly out leap and gain separation are two reasons off the top my head. I remember Vincent Jackson getting pissed at Freeman for leading him in the middle getting his head knocked off ~ he just telegraphed that throw from the start…which he does on most of his throws. For some reason he does not do a good job at looking off the defenders. He had time! Even with our two main o linemen going down he still had time. Not to mention he rarely improvises anymore. Hopefully this year all that is corrected (especially under Sully again). I really want the man to succeed. Go Bucs

  8. Braheem Says:

    Freeman “Has gotten it done”. What he needed was others to pull their weight. The guy stood at 25 TDs 8Ints after wk 13! WHAT DO YOU CALL THAT!!!!!

    What QB could take a team anywhere with a #31 Ranked Defense?

    Yeah…Glennon huh, you guys think Right after Bucs break franchise records for offensive production they should turn the team over to a Rookie QB?

  9. Vic Says:

    @Macabee – That’s a quote from the Yahoo story

  10. WestCoastBucsFan Says:


    The words “third round” should be inserted just before “Rookie QB”.

    That’s right, people are actually calling for a third round rookie QB to come in and start over an established veteran in 2013. It really is hilarious.

  11. Vern4499 Says:

    St Augustine,

    So I guess you will give a % of the blame of some of the Ints to the receivers then right? If they dropped or tipped the ball or maybe cut the wrong way or just plain fell down? You want to blame Free for things but then only give him 10% credit for a very good wideout having a career year? Your post is laughable.

  12. Bobby Says:

    Freeman does keep his eyes down field but I wish he’d look at more than one receiver…..He does need to work on going through his progressions more quickly. I think practicing against this years secondary will make that step a must. He’s never nervous in the pocket. He at times was actually more calm than he should have been and he held the ball too long. He’s definitely not afraid to take a hit.

  13. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Tampa Says:

    He may “keep his eyes downfield”, but unfortunately many times, they are locked on one target who is covered.
    I hope as Josh gets more comfortable in this offense, he will be able to pick up his other reads faster and better.
    Seldom does he look off defenders, and all too often, he telegraphs throws.
    When he is good, he is great, but when he is bad, he really sucks.
    This will have to change, because Tampa has much to much invested in talent, to allow an inconsistent QB to hold us back.
    Glennon is here, for a reason.
    He is here to replace Josh Freeman, when and if he falters.
    All the lip talk about Schiano “Loving Josh Freeman” is just that, Lip Talk.
    If he loved him so much, Glennon would not be here.

    LOL, my ex wife told everyone she loved me too, right before she filed for Divorce.

  14. Buccsfan76 Says:

    Glad to see a bunch of positive Freeman posts. Tired of the blind haters.

  15. mcBuc Says:

    Please explain how you guys can tell who and where any qbs eyes are looking by tv or sitting in the stands. Fans keep saying it, i keep asking this question, but no one ever answers. Enlighten me great qb gurus.

  16. WestCoastBucsFan Says:

    Glennon is here, for a reason.

    So that if Freeman goes down in 2013, the season will not be a total loss as it would be with Orlovsky. Glennon is insurance. At the very best, he will compete in 2014.

    Even if Freeman totally tanks it this season, I think there is a decent chance we draft one early next year. (We should have a high enough pick to do so if Freeman fails.) That is how sure I am that Glennon is destined to be the back up.

    The Panthers selected the great Jimmy Clausen (I believe in the second round) and promptly drafted Cam the following year. I don’t think it is out of the question for the Bucs to do the same if they don’t get what they want out of Freeman. (Although, I think Freeman will exceed most expectations.)

  17. mcBuc Says:

    Chris. Greenbay drafter rogers but that did not mean they were firing favre. Sane thing with castle in new england. I can go in, but it will not matter. We needed a back up, so they drafted one. Freeman will be fine, and glennon will wait his turn, if it ever comes.

  18. WestCoastBucsFan Says:


    I have asked the same question. No idea how some people claim to know where Freeman is supposed to be looking and how fast he is going through progressions.

    I remember hearing some cut ups from the Niners season and hearing that the OC said before one particular play, “It is either Vernon Davis on this play or throw it away”. How does anyone know if Freeman is not being told the same things on certain plays. “On this third down, launch it to V-jax no matter what”. It is really hard for a “fan” to assess these things without knowing what type of play was called. (And we will NEVER know that.)

  19. stevek Says:

    West Coast,

    Quit stirring the pot, you are a nay sayer in your own feeble mind.

    Get over it, dude.

    We all want Josh Freeman to be a super bowl MVP/champion, but the guy has not established consistency.

    Some fans see the truth, an inconsistent, immensly talented QB.

  20. WestCoastBucsFan Says:

    “. . . your own feeble mind.”

    Coming from the guy that re-hashes everything he says and puts it in the comment section of every article. You say the same things OVER AND OVER again. (And I am not the only person to have called you on this.)

    “Some fans see the truth . . . “

    Coming from the guy that still thinks Schiano ran the 2012 draft by himself after Schiano himself said he did no such thing. Calling him amazing and a liar in the same sentence.

    You certainly are entertaining stevek, I will give you that.

  21. Macabee Says:

    tThanks Vic,

    I re-read the entire piece. Couldn’t at first tell exactly who was being complimented!

  22. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I think Freeman is great, but has a few challenges to overcome. I have no doubt that as he matures he will overcome them.

  23. Braheem Says:

    Once Again!

    FREEMAN IS A BUCCANEER STRENGTH….not a weakness! If the Bucs hope to make “The Tournament” aka Playoffs, it is the Head Coach who needs to come through!

    Lets be real here! Coach up that Defense, make better down/distant play choices, Motivate your team using Positive reinforcememt, remember you are coaching Professionals in Tampa not collegiates at Rutgers!!!!

  24. stevek Says:

    West Coast,

    Schiano + Dominick drafted.

    You started the “re-hashing”, name calling, and porous opinion bolstering.

    24-40 at that, that dog doesn’t hunt.

  25. stevek Says:

    West Coast,

    Since we are bringing up prior discussions, were you one of the “ones” who pegged Tyler Eifert to the Bucs, and had him being drafted before Tavon Austin?

    I got called “Matt Millen” like, but Joe must know this is not “old man football” 😉

    Seriously, Left Coast, what gives? “Feeble comment”:

    WestCoastBucsFan Says:
    May 23rd, 2013 at 1:49 pm

    The words “third round” should be inserted just before “Rookie QB”.

    That’s right, people are actually calling for a third round rookie QB to come in and start over an established veteran in 2013. It really is hilarious.

    ^^^^ Hilarious is your unwillingness to accept that Mike Glennon could possibly be a good NFL QB. I understand your faith in Freeman, but how can you support Freeman with the optimism, and you cut Glennon out of the picture?

    Bias much? I bet you were probably one of the few 49er fans to complain, piss, and moan about Colin Kaepernick going in for Alex Smith this past year.

    I accept your opinions, respect your fanship, but I just don’t get how you can support a proven inconsistency, and doubt the 73rd pick of this draft? Russell Wilson and Nick Foles did pretty good for being 3rd rounders. Thomas 2.2 made a helluva post the other night about “draft position” and Tom Brady, and Belichick’s willingness to pull Bledsoe in favor of the “bean pole 6th rounder”… Sure, it is a rarity, but not out of the realm of possibility. Could you please not cast your doubt and insulting other fans for their open-mindedness to change rather than sit back and watch the same thing, expecting different results? <—- #Insanity

  26. WestCoastBucsFan Says:

    Hilarious is your unwillingness to accept that Mike Glennon could possibly be a good NFL QB.

    You missed a KEY point in my comment. I qualified it with “2013”. I NEVER said Glennon did not have the POTENTIAL to be a good NFL quarterback. Not once. I said only that he is not going to challenge THIS YEAR. I think Glennon could develop into a very talented starter, just not this year. Glennon has all the potential in the world but to expect him to come in as a rookie and beat out a talented veteran this year is foolish.

    Also, no, I don’t know anything about college ball and never claimed that Eifert would go before or after Austin. (Didn’t care, honestly). I never called you out for such things.

    Also, the problem with 2.2’s post is that neither Alex Smith or Bledsoe were “pulled”. They were both injured and promptly “wally pipped” by the back up. They had their jobs taken from them by the backups, not the coaches.

  27. mcBuc Says:

    Inwas just about to say the same thing. Thomas has revisionarg posts, don’t trust his menory. Bketso was injured.

  28. mcBuc Says:

    Oh, and brady was not drafted to replace bletso. Brady like sixth rounders are also rare.

  29. Jacko101 Says:

    Team Freeman, I believe we have the best team since the 2002 squad. As long as injuries don’t hamper us again we will be playoff bound.

  30. Bobby Says:

    You can tell Freeman is staring down a receiver when another receiver breaks free and he completely misses it because his eyes are still on his primary target. Look, when he’s good he’s very good but that is my knock on him. He just needs to scan the field quicker and be decisive.

  31. Gus Says:

    St Augustine,
    A career year! He had the best year he has ever had. That’s not by accident. Freeman gets at least 50 percent of that credit