Bucs Central

Coach Quotes Friday: Raheem Morris

Bucs head coach Raheem Morris addressed the media Friday afternoon. He spoke about the progress of Antonio BryantMaurice Stovall playing the X, Y and Zebra receiver positions…Tanard Jackson playing cornerback…on whether or not the young defensive lineman will play more and the secondary depth being stretched more with injuries mounting.

(On if he feels good about Bryant’s progress)

“It’s encouraging. There’s no guarantee. There’s no guarantee nothing’s going to happen overnight as far as the knee. We’ve just got to be hopeful and be wishful, but it was an encouraging week for Antonio compared to the last couple.”

(On if Bryant looked good in practice)
“He did. He looked decent. He looked as good as he’s looked all year, as far as coming out to practice. We’ve got to get him to the game and see what we can go with from there.”

(On if the young defensive linemen might play more)
“A lot of those guys got about 30 snaps or more last week. Kyle Moore actually got a couple more reps than he usually gets, and Dre Moore was the guy that got about 13 to 14 reps last week. You’d like to see those guys get more reps, in a certain way. We want to shorten the game a little bit, so you would be comfortable if those guys got less reps and the game was shortened. But if the game does go long, you’d like to see those guys get up in those 20 or so reps to try to get them some game-time activity, keep our guys fresh to get those guys going so they can have the production like they had in the Green Bay game.”

(On if the Saints use a lot of three-wide formations on offense)
“New Orleans, they’re a three-wide football team. They’ve got a lot of wideouts that they feel confident in, that they’re comfortable with. They like to get Marques Colston in the slot, Devery Henderson out there on the outside. They’ve been through a plethora of different guys. You’ve seen Lance Moore go out there and be productive, you’ve seen [Robert] Meachem this year come on strong. It’s a strength of their football team, their wide receivers and how they are, what type of players they are. There’s not really one guy to focus on. I guess Marques is the leader as far as yards, but Lance is not far behind. The explosive plays from Meachem, explosive plays from Devery, that’s always fun to have on your football team. And they play with a lot of experience. They’ve got a guy behind center that will get them the ball at any given time on any given down.”

(On the Bucs’ secondary depth being stretched)
“Somebody’s got to step up. Torrie’s got to go out there and play, and you need [Derrick] Roberson and some of those guys to step up for you that are going to get a bigger role on special teams and take some of the heat off of Torrie Cox so he can get out there and get you through it and get you through the whole game.”

(On if Bryant would slide right back into his starting role)
“We’ll put him at his X position if he’s ready to go. Depending on if he can go or not, we’ll put him in the X, and if he does go you still should expect to see some Maurice Stovall. He did too good of a job of going in there and spelling him for there not to be some type of rotation to get those guys going in there, for him and Michael Clayton. I talked to both of those guys and we talked about reducing the amount of reps on both of them. The last couple of weeks, they seemed to play a lot better, more energized, having 40 snaps per game rather than the normal 60. That might be something we use from here on out no matter what happens.”

(On if Stovall could fill in at both the X and Z positions)
“Maurice is smart enough to play X, Z, Zebra, he goes inside for us. He does a little bit of everything. He’s kind of the Everything Man, kind of a very valuable man on game day as you can see with his special teams productivity and also what he’s been able to do the last couple of weeks starting at the X position.”

(On if he’s more excited to see what Josh Freeman can do with Bryant back in the mix)
“I’m excited to see Freeman, period. Whenever I’m feeling bad about myself, if I go read your guys’ articles, I just go put all his completions together and look at them and just kind of get happy again. I’m excited about the young man but at the same time I’m patient because I can go make a reel of his mistakes as well and believe your guys’ articles.”

(On if Tanard Jackson might play some cornerback)
“I don’t think I would do that. When you’ve got a man playing at an A-like potential and ability, it gets a little scary to do that. Now, he does have some roles for us in the dime package where he goes down there and plays opposite Ronde [Barber]. But to put him down there at corner, I don’t know if I want to do that just because of what he’s done at that safety position, being an A-like player. That would not be the plan going in. He’s always an emergency corner because he always knows the stuff and has the ability to do it, as you’ve seen before in the Philly game. But right now the plan is to leave him back there where he’s been having A-like production.”

(On if Mack has been fighting through an ankle injury)
“He has fought through. He’s been put in a situation where he’s in a tough spot with his ankle so he’s trying to fight through and dig it out. He’s a tough young man. They all are, and that’s part of the reason they play this game.”

Courtesy of the Buccaneers Public Relations Department

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