Schiano: Handoff Snafu Wrong Call

December 15th, 2013
kickoff handoff

This photo appears to show Eric Page’s handoff to Russell Sheppard on a kick return was not squarely placed in Sheppard’s gut, which resulted in a scoop-and-score by the 49ers. Given the fact that both special teams coach Dave Wannstedt and Bucs commander Greg Schiano confronted Page on the sideline after the play, and that Page did not return to the field on the ensuing kickoff, it’s fair to reason Page was at fault somehow on the play.

Joe has already posted about the kickoff fumble between Eric Page and Russell Sheppard that provided the 49ers with a game-sealing scoop-and-score. The angle of a close-up replay Joe saw in the press box of the Stadium on Dale Mabry Highway showed Page did not put the ball in Sheppard’s gut, which is Football 101 for handoffs.

The replay Joe saw is not included in this replay from the game broadcast.

What is shown on the replay linked above is special teams coach Dave Wannstedt immediately talking to Page. Joe saw moments after that Schiano chewing out Page.

On the ensuing kickoff return, it was Skye Dawson, and not Page, who was back deep. Page was on the sidelines. Feel free to draw your own conclusions. Speaking with Joe after the game, Page made it perfectly clear he was not freelancing and that the play was called, presumably by someone on the Bucs’ bench.

Whoever called the play, was wrong, so Schiano said in his postgame presser.

“It was a called play,” Schiano said. “We were going to run a reverse if the opportunity presented itself the right way. It didn;t, yet we still ran it. But it’s okay. We made a mistake. Guys make mistakes sometimes.”

Schiano did not elaborate who called the play. Again, Page told Joe he did not freelance, meaning he just didn’t decide to run it when he took the field after the 49ers went up 23-14 with 4:27 left in the game.

17 Responses to “Schiano: Handoff Snafu Wrong Call”

  1. That Guy Says:

    “It’s fair to reason Schiano was at fault on that play.”

    Fixed it for you.

  2. Justin Says:

    Ummm greg it’s not okay.

  3. Splengo Says:

    Give the kid a break. He didn’t call the play and he didn’t put the team in the position where that act of desperation was needed!

  4. Kevin Says:

    “It’s not ok. We made a critical mistake. We make too many critical mistakes at critical moments.”

    Fixed it for you, Greg.

  5. Christopher Says:

    Enough of the “Football 101” stuff putting this on Page. That’s almost an impossible thing asking him to handoff, at that angle, going at that speed, when it’s something he’s probably never done before. Most of those trickeration return plays do a little flip toss in lieu of a handoff because of that. Schiano has shown an ability to be conservation when we need the opposite, & to pull off BS when we just need to play “Football 101”. And the fact that Wannstedt & Schiano hung Page out to dry on the sideline afterwards shows why one coach has failed 3 times as the head man, & one is about ready to fail again. As Schiano said, they almost invented new ways to lose—that’s coaching, bub.

  6. WalkdaPlank Says:

    Maybe Schiano will be interested in that Longhorns coaching job?

    In all seriousness though, IMO he needs 5 wins to stay, no less. They aren’t going to be easy since the only two games left are against St.Louis and New Orleans. However, the Saints might be resting their starters. I will just not be content with 4-12 as a fan. Rah got the boot for his 4-12 season after his previous 10-6 season. Schiano didn’t even have 10 wins last season. I will give Schiano credit that his players didn’t quit on him, but maybe that’s because he is like Drill Sgt. Lee Ermey when compared to the laid-back Rah, which is odd because while Schiano’s team hasn’t quit on him they still commit more penalties than most other teams in the NFL.

    If Schiano gets 5 wins, he gets a third season. I’m not sure how much excitement I’m going to have if he is our coach going into next year, because if the Bucs start losing in 2014 with Schiano still at the helm, it’s going to be 10 times worse than it was during the 0-8 streaks. Honestly, I just want what is best for my favorite NFL team, if Schiano is the man that can take the Bucs back to the promised land, so be it. But I’m sick and tired of the rebuilding seasons we have been going through for the past 5 years going on 6.

  7. That Guy Says:

    Pretty sure the Longhorns would have zero interest in Gregory. They’re trying to get back to winning.

  8. buc4lyfe Says:

    Perfect play call so the media can blame everyone and anyone else but the man in charge

  9. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Joe says
    “Page did not put the ball in Sheppard’s gut”

    I would like to see the same replay, because the one I saw showed Sheppard having the ball and losing his balance, he lowered the hand holding the ball to catch himself from falling, thereby releasing the ball.

    Page should not be blamed in any way or form in my book. Sheppard should be.

  10. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Lowered the arm I mean.

  11. Adam L. Says:

    If one play gets a coach fired, that’s it.

    I’ll put that next to Marty Morningwig “taking the wind.”

  12. Joe Says:

    That’s almost an impossible thing asking him to handoff, at that angle, going at that speed, when it’s something he’s probably never done before.

    All parties Joe spoke with said that play has worked running full-speed in practice.

  13. lurker Says:

    page placed the ball correctly. the oter guy fumbled it. now whether he should have handed it off or not might be on him depending on the play call. the call might be that he has an option to run it or hand it off depending on certain situations.

  14. Adam L. Says:

    That photo show the ball is gut high. We are disputing the photo?

  15. Analacubana Says:

    To blame Page is like blaming your son for YOUR car accident. Lmao. Typical lately, at 1 Buc. Everyone is responsible except our HC. Still laughing! But it worked in practice !!! Lmao!

  16. Hawaiian Buc Says:

    I don’t care how many times it worked in practice, that is a dangerous play (even though I’m totally ok with it). Nothing simulates the game. Just think about the timing and how difficult the execution of the play would be – you have a guy running full speed and trying to hand it off to a guy running at a 90 degree angle – also running at full speed – all the while there are 11 guys running at you full speed with the sole purpose of tearing your head off. As I’ve said, I’m fine with the call, but not surprised with the result. Singling out Eric Page is wrong in my opinion.

  17. Awaiting moderation Says:

    They need to @ least upgrade the Oc position and draft a De, OL , receiver, TE and then maybe a QB.