Eric Page Explains Late-Game Screwup

November 13th, 2013

Eric Page is the NFL’s 10th-ranked punt returner, among those with 10 or more attempts.

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.

32 Responses to “Eric Page Explains Late-Game Screwup”

  1. BucsfaninChina Says:

    The reaction from Schiano was priceless. After pulling Page aside, looking him dead in the eye, and giving his best dad impression you could see him say, “Now why would you do something like that?” Page looked like hr was gonna poop his pants

  2. BFFL Says:

    Page hit the guy before the ball went out of bounds and before the whistle blew. I agree with Page. He was just trying to do the right thing.

  3. Splengo Says:

    Page had a shot and he had to take it. Sometimes it’s like that – his chance to give one instead of take one. He had a 52yd return so he’s forgiven! Kids got a little sandlot left in him! That’s all!

  4. Westsidebucsfan Says:

    I would rather have a player who is trying to make a play and gets called for a 15 yard penalty than a player who doesn’t try to make a play. I agree with you Joe, the kid has a ton of potential

  5. Bucfan#37 Says:

    In a game a few games ago Page on a return darted up the left side for a good many yards. I thought then this guy is a good return man. I’m also excited about his potential.

  6. JK Says:

    Plus he talks to Joe.

  7. Jonny 2.3 Says:

    I like Page. He is a big upgrade over the garbage we’ve had ever since Spurlock left.

  8. MikeJ Says:

    Blocking during a play is illegal??

  9. SeanyMac in SC Says:

    I’m more disappointed in Goldson penalty. His penalty was sheer stupidity.

  10. stevek Says:

    Schiano is a great teacher, in exactly that moment Schiano kept his cool and turned Page’s gaffe into a learning experience.

    Hopefully we can see these guys “learning” how to win in a regular basis.

    Go Glennon, go! Win the hearts of the Freemanites!

  11. stevek Says:

    Goldson is still adjusting the new roles, right now he is stubbornly approaching the rule changes.

    He will get it figured out, he was an All-Pro just last year. I just hope he can find the sweet spot in his play, sooner rather than later.

  12. oldfart44 Says:

    What does that mean? The new Schiano order???

    Did somebody also just make the statement that he is a teacher? Teaches what? How to get more penalties than any other team in the NFL. What a loser Schiano is.

  13. stevek Says:


    Schaino has an eye for talent and structure. I hope Glennon plays his way into a job. We deserve a “Franchise QB”, finally.

    Why are so many Rutgers players in the league now?

    I hope Schiano lets his D-Lineman run wild and we start winning immediately.

  14. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    oldfart44, New Schiano Order is a take from New World Order, the wrestling team that had Hulk Hogan.

    And your read of Schiano is way off.

  15. Jbeachbuc Says:

    I also like his upside, but I’ve seen him fair catch some punts where he should have ran with them instead.. Drives me crazy.

  16. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I like Page and would like to see him as a slot reciever….He has some decent hands and quickness…..I agree that he has called for some fair catches too often….a bit conservative and that penalty was out of character for him.
    I think the ball was out of bounds when he made his hit and he should have known that…but his upside is great.

  17. WalkdaPlank Says:

    I just hope people don’t start going crazy over Schiano and the Bucs finally winning ONE game! What is it now, won 2 of the last 16, and only 1 this season? And the game was a very sloppy, ugly win against a mediocre, struggling Miami team that is the middle of a media circus (what other Florida team had one of those just a few weeks ago? Hmmm..). But I will give credit where credit is due. A win is a win, and Monday night I was the happiest I have been as a Bucs fan all season. Glennon was finally able to win a game, and the O-Line still had a little gas left in the 4th to put it away.

    But sorry Gregory, you were much, much too late with a dose of the “W’s”, the only cure that could’ve saved your job possibly back in October. Winning can get some folks to look past all the “Bad, & the Ugly” and focus on mostly the “Good”. If only you would’ve done it from the start, you wouldn’t have fans hashtagging for your head, you wouldn’t have a billboard on the side of the road in Tampa reading “FIRE SCHIANO”, and you have the media all up in your face about being on the “hot seat” after only less than two years in the NFL.

    Maybe if you do something the NFL has probably never seen before like finish on an 8 game win streak to go 8-8, or perhaps 7-9 again you can cool that seat off, but I’m not looking past your team being the most penalized team in the league. Not looking past the “leaky Josh Freeman” debacle that could’ve been avoided. Not looking past the 8 straight losses and 2-14 in your last 16. And certainly not looking past only being able to score 2 TD’s in the second half this entire season, and blowing big leads to second rate teams. So maybe you kept the fans calling for your immediate termination and the placing of an interim coach at bay for at least a week, but IMO your still gone after the season. But ya still got 7 games left! GO BUCS!!!!

  18. Kevin Says:

    Too many typo’s joe…I like page

  19. oldfart44 Says:

    BuccaneerBonzai, please enlighten me as to how I am wrong about Schiano. I readily admit that I have a big time hate for him. Thanks.

  20. Buc1987 Says:

    I’m still not overlooking the David’s hot on Geno in week 1 and Lindell’s missed FG in week 2. Those are not Schiano’s fault. The penalties and DUMB mistakes are on the player and NOT the coach. Especially VETERAN players. DUMB penalties have killed this team all season long. That and those lame ass stunts by the defense.

    All I’m saying is if FANS look at the bigger picture and WHY the Bucs lost each game and break it down what happened during those games, it might not all be Schiano’s fault.

    Fans like JOE continually talk about a Schiano “disciplined team” making so many penalties as inexcusably. As if the coach can control such BS that goes on in the game.

    When a VET makes a penalty, how much of it is on the coach and how much of it is on the player? How can Schiano prevent the penalty from happening?

    Can someone answer that question legitimately for me? So far the only one that has tried is Hawaiian Buc and he was not very good at it as he was just all gung ho on it’s all Schiano’s fault anyways, which still made no sense.

    I’m not throwing out the penalties as an excuse for Schiano to stay. I think a good coach finds a way to win despite the penalties. That’s where Schiano might be lacking, the in-game adjustment when BIG penalties happen at crucial times.

  21. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    I think many of the penalties are caused by players that have been either overmatched or are trying too hard.
    That is no excuse….I don’t blame Schiano for all of them…but the discipline is the overall responsibility of the coaches.
    Here is the problem for Schiano….when you have multiple breakdowns….multiple penalties, bad playcalling….dropped passes….confused routes….no QB pressure….there are so many individual players involved that you can’t blame one….but you can blame one coach….its just easier for fans to do that…he’s the leader…he gets the blame…bottom line.
    A couple of early wins and one here & there from then and he has no problem….but that’s not the way it happened.

  22. Buc1987 Says:

    What I’m trying to say is there are too many would’ve, could’ve, and should’ve’s in the last 9 weeks. Too many if’s. Too many if’s that I DON’T blame on Schiano. That’s includes Josh as well. What a nightmare that we fans have had to endure this season. A season of so many high expectations. So since WE fans don’t make the call about who is going to be the coach of our team next season. I’m still pulling for the current one to fix the mess that is. Be damned the draft pick. I don’t care anymore about the draft slot. I go to the DAMN games. Just win and win now. Make the playoffs? No way. Just win though. Just go on a run and prove yourselves to the fans. Prove to them that they were not wrong to have such high expectations. This season has me having to re-think everything when it comes to my team.

    I’m lost and confused when it comes to this team for the first time in many many years.

    Which for now and possibly through next season I have no answers anymore. I’m out there just flailing in the wind as a fan. All I want is wins and I don’t care when the start to happen. This season or next.

  23. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    @ 87….

    You’ll get another win Sunday….I predicted 2 in a row…

    Relax….I know you’re frustrated and that comes from not being in control…
    It’s like being in stop-and-roll traffic in Raleigh….its hot, your air isn’t working….you’ve got to piss….horns are honking behind you….you’re late for work…..that’s frustrating and you have no control…..but guess what?…you got through it. You will get through this too.
    You have both a financial and emotional investment that isn’t paying off……yet….but it will….trust me.

  24. WalkdaPlank Says:

    I hear ya, penalties are committed by the players, not the coaches. However, do you see what we perceive as a “well-coached team” like, say the Seahawks or the Broncos or the 9ers commit penalty after penalty like the Bucs do? No! The Bucs are the MOST penalized team in the NFL. Some things, like the David penalty, and the Page penalty in this article, are out of the coaches hands. But, it’s the coaches job to discipline these guys in practice to not make such dumb, game-killing penalties in the first place.

    You can’t fix a QB who can’t throw (i.e Tebow), you can’t fix a wide receiver or cornerback who have stone hands. Those are things players should know how to do when they get to the Pros. However, you’re never too old to learn, and raise that football I.Q. Schiano gets paid to coach and teach these guys that if you grab a guy’s jersey and yank him, you’re gonna get called for holding. If you push or hit a guy who set a foot out of bounds, a yellow hankie is gonna get thrown for a late hit. If you push a guy 5 yards past the line of scrimmage, you’re gonna get called for pass interference, etc. It’s not 100% the coaches fault or 100% the players fault. Just like in school, it’s not entirely the teachers fault if one or two kids fail the class, but what if the majority of the class is failing? Is it all the students fault? Bottom line, Schiano has to teach and the players have to listen.

  25. WalkdaPlank Says:

    When it comes to the first two losses, Schiano did play a part with conservative play-calling. The David call and the Lindell kick were not committed by Schiano himself. But twice in a row, he didn’t trust Freeman to throw the ball and seal the win.

    Specifically, in the Saints loss on 3rd and 7 he decided to run Doug Martin. If the Bucs get a 1st down, its game over, Saints can’t stop the clock, Bucs win. He RUNS THE BALL, even though the Saints were expecting it. Of course, Doug doesn’t get the first and the Bucs are forced to kick a FG, which was missed and Drew Brees leads the Saints to an easy GW-Field Goal. Bucs lose. In the Jets game, he ran the ball with Martin rather than let Josh throw, except in that game Lindell actually made the FG with :34 left and David’s boneheaded play cost the Bucs the game. But he could’ve tried to close it out without letting them take the field. Go for 1st downs, go for TD’s, be AGGRESSIVE. Back then, it was just one loss, but clearly as the conservative playcalling continued in later games the “L’s” starting racking up. Coincidence? Maybe, but I don’t think so.

  26. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Also….its human nature….either its Golston, Page, Zuttah, Underwood, Meredith, LVDs, Jackson’s fault….or

    It’s Schiano’s fault….a fish stinks from the head….actually you could say its Dominick’s fault or even the Glazers…but they are out of sight and isolated….the cameras don’t show them on the sideline.
    The biggest problem for us is that the penalties are spread around so much……we used to be able to simply pin the blame on Trueblood….or before that Kenyatta Walker!!!

  27. Andrew 1 Says:

    Im just relieved that we wont be going 0-16. the way this season has been going it sure seemed like a real possibility. now that we have gotten that out of the way, Im alright with keeping Schiano until at least the end of the season. but after the season ends I would surprised if he wasn’t fired, even if he does win 5 games.

  28. Buc1987 Says:

    WalkdaPlank…well the 3rd and 7 run in the Saints game was the right call as far as I’m concerned. Kick the FG and if it’s made, Brees and the Saints have about 1 minute to score a TD instead of a FG for the win.

    I’ll still say that Schiano made the right call until the day I die in that game. Second guessing what Schiano should have done is too easy, considering that Lindell missed the kick. NO ONE knows what would have happened had he made that kick. Some can say Brees would have marched the Saints down field with no T.O.s and score the winning TD. Then some like me could say that there was no way in hell Brees had a chance at that point with no T.O.’s. That’s where I give this S.O.B. Schiano the benefit of the doubt is the 1st 2 games.

    Seattle? NOT A GAWD DAMN ONE OF YOU BUC FANS THOUGHT THEY HAD A CHANCE AT GOING INTO SEATTLE AND EVEN COMPETING WITH THEM. Well maybe MadMax in South Carolina thought so. He picked the Bucs in an upset on these threads and damn near was right.

    Look what I’m trying to say is this. Schiano is stuck with a backup ROOKIE QB, a 3rd string RB and Rainey. He has no Mike Williams…well he had no Williams ANYWAYS most of the season. Where did Mike Williams go to anyways? What? he signs the new contract and POOF he’s gone?

    If this coach wins despite his VERY depleted roster, with the constant fan and media hate, then I say he deserves another crack at this. THAT’S right I said it.

    The season is already awash. Give the the guy a fookin break and cheer for your team. Cheer for him, because he’s leading it. He calls the shots right now. The Glazers are NOT going to fire him until the end of 2013. That’s obvious.

    Sure… cheer for them to lose to get that higher pick whatever gets you by. I’m not doing it. I’ll cheer for Schiano, Mike Glennon, Brian Leonard, and Vincent (I might be quitting) Jackson. That goes for the rest of this damn team. Be a BUCS fan. Deal with all this crap and suck it up.The 2013 season is all we have for now. So cheer for the 2013 Bucs to win. No matter what the draft slot they get.

  29. Buc1987 Says:

    Be a DAMN fan. That’s right I’m not done ranting. What would make you more happier at this point? Your team winning 6 out of the next 7 games remaining, NOT making the playoffs and going 7-9 to close out the season, looking to good things in 2014 regardless of the draft slot? or Losing the remaining games just to get a higher pick?

    I’m NOT saying that either will happen. I’m saying if they end up going 7-9 will that make you feel better in YOUR mind coming out of this miserable 2013 campaign?

    Will it make you feel better as a fan or will having that number 2 or 3 pick make you feel better?

    That I will ask you JOE’s as fans. I know it’s late. 12:36 in the A.M. but I know one of you are up. So can I get an answer from one of you FANS?

    That goes for the REST of you JBF bloggers too…can you help me out?

    Answers please?

    I know it’s late. So I will re-post some of this tomorrow when the sun comes up asking the the same 2 questions above.

    What would make you feel better?

    If the answer is going 7-9 to close out the season, then I know how you feel and I’m on your page. Tell me so and why.

    If the answer is the season is over screw it anyways lose every game and get the higher pick. Tell me so and why.

    I want to read your comments.

    Think about it Joe’s. Good lord, do I need to help you out? Get your readers engaged with these types of questions. Inquiring fellow Buc fans want to know what other Buc fans are thinking at this point in time.
    Not all fans are on the same page ya know???


  30. Buc1987 Says:


  31. Patrick in VA Says:

    @1987 – I’ll be your huckleberry. The draft spot is a bonus. If we’re able to get a great player to add to the team next year I would be elated. The reason I got a sick feeling when we won on Monday night was that it was something that could be used to convince the owners to bring schiano and his cavalcade of loser coaches back next year. The pick is irrelevant. We need to lose just enough to get the coach out of here. If the Glazers would come out and say that we need to win X number of games for the coaches to be retained then I’ll pull for us to win X-1 and wherever that puts us on the draft board I’ll be fine with because it’s not about needing one more piece to make us great. We’ve got talent on the team. We need to get a coach that can use it.

  32. Reezy Says:

    @Buc1987, it is safe to say that going 7-9 from here out is not an improvement. Nobody wants to watch a team that is just midling. I don’t care how long someone is a fan it is just damn numbing to root for a team and feel like they will never make the damn playoffs. I really would rather we get a higher pick trade back for extra picks in the 2nd and 3rd so that we can build quality depth, something we don’t have. I mean really do I think that at some point we are going to start making the playoffs with this current coaching staff. No I do not! Do I want to see the Bucs win, YES! But I would much rather see a consistent winner, which is possible, than a team who can’t figure it out until half way through the season!