Commentary | Tampa Bay Buccaneers coach Greg Schiano's Buccaneer Men sinking fast

adell@bradenton.comSeptember 29, 2013 


Josh Freeman is all but gone.

It's time to focus on who is left.

Looking at the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, that's not easy.

We know those who remain under head coach Greg Schiano are Buccaneer Men.

What is a Buccaneer Man?

It was a phrase coined by Schiano when he took over the Bucs last season.

To find the answer, first you must define Schiano.

At the moment, he is Captain Queeg, and the ship that resides on the mezzanine floor behind the end zone at Raymond James Stadium is the Caine.

The mutiny?

That has been going on since August.

Freeman confirmed it this week when the quarterback did an exclusive interview with ESPN and admitted he was seeking a trade before the trade rumors surfaced, something he originally denied.

It makes you believe the rumors of discord between cornerback Darrelle Revis and Schiano was not the figment of someone's imagination.

Where there is smoke there is fire. Where there is Schiano, there is a forest burning.

We know more about who is not a Buccaneer Man.

We know Aqib Talib, Kellen Winslow Jr. and LeGarrette Blount are not Buccaneer Men.

We know if Schiano keeps getting rid of people not Buccaneer Men, he won't have enough players to field a team.

We know Schiano went above and beyond his duties to make Eric Wright a Buccaneer Man. Unfortunately, the cornerback continued to drive his car into other vehicles while under the influence of something and had his Bucs gear confiscated.

Schiano is not talking much about anything related to his problems.

Maybe his next press conference will be to find who stole the strawberries from the Buccaneers' pantry.

It would be better to dissect Freeman.

In the last four years, no quarterback in the NFL digressed faster than Freeman. In 2010, he was the darling of the league with 25 TD passes and only six interceptions, completing 61.4 percent of his passes to a cast of mediocre receivers.

Schiano is the person most responsible for Freeman not getting a contract extension. The coach has little patience for developing quarterbacks.

So Mike Glennon, Freeman's heir apparent, beware!

In his last three years at Rutgers, Schiano went through three different true freshman quarterbacks. During a seven-year stretch at Rutgers, he went through six quarterbacks.

Schiano did nothing to alter the offense to Freeman's strength. When he was putting up his 2010 numbers, a significant amount of Freeman's big plays came when he broke out of the pocket and threw on the run.

Schiano made him a pocket passer, and he suffered a drop in production after a fast start.

Scouting reports on Glennon paint him as somewhat of a Freeman clone with perhaps a stronger arm, but he's less mobile. He will be facing an Arizona defense today that is beset by injuries, which could help.

But unless there is a change in philosophy, he will be operating an offense that many in the NFL consider obsolete. It stresses too many isolation routes, putting Vincent Jackson and Mike Williams in position to go after 50-50 balls, and disdains the quick throws, screens and underneath routes. It's a reason the Bucs rank 30th in yards after catch.

So what is a Buccaneer Man?

Maybe Mike Glennon will show us. Or maybe he will show us who is not.

Alan Dell, Herald sports writer, can be reached at 941-745-7080, ext. 7056. Follow him on Twitter at @ADellSports.

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