Bucs Central

Wednesday: Open Locker Room Player Quotes

Rookie QB Josh Freeman spoke at length to the media after practice Wednesday

Rookie QB Josh Freeman spoke at length to the media after practice Wednesday

Several teammates of Josh Freeman spoke about the rookie making his first NFL start. Josh Freeman told members of the media in attendance he is comfortable with his development at this stage…takes getting the teams first win as a big challenge…spoke about his mentality as a rookie and if he has set  a goal for the number of passes he wants to complete against the Packers on Sunday.

(On Josh Freeman being the starter)

“That’s the position were in. That’s a guy that from at the beginning and after being drafted they declared him to be the future. It’s just a matter of establishing and allowing him to get experience.”

(On having to start again with a new quarterback)
“It’s not bad being able to adjust. It’s just a matter of getting him out there and giving him the reps and the looks. One thing about quarterbacks in this league is that guys come in as rookies and you don’t appear open to them in the league. They are used to being in college and throwing to wide open receivers. The difference in here is being open is just the difference of a step or two. It’s about allowing him to have the confidence to throw the ball in anticipation to us receivers being open.”

(On his development)
“We’ll see. There is nothing like game speed. If there is anything that he can get better at its playing at that game tempo.”

(On Josh Freeman)

“I’m excited for him. He is a young guy, there is a lot of weight on his shoulders right now being a first round draft pick. He is going to try to come in, and not really try to turn the whole organization around, but going to start making his stamp on this league and the organization. I’m excited for him for that opportunity because not many people get it. As far as myself, I’m just going to go out there and do what I can do, control what I can control. Whether it be running the right routes and the right depths, winning, catching the ball, blocking, doing whatever I can to not only help myself, but the team and other guys out there with me.”

(On his emotions)

“I’m definitely excited. I’m excited for the opportunity, I’m excited to get out there and show what I can do.”

(On what he feels like he can do in this stage of his development)
“I feel really comfortable with the offense right now. I’ve been working really hard with Coach Olson and I feel comfortable with a lot of the guys I’m throwing it to. I just want to go out there and let it rip.”

(On what he has learned)
“I’ve learned a lot about preparation. That goes back to a lot of the stuff you do in college compared to the hours and the numerous things you need to compare to being an NFL starter. I’m fortunate to have Coach Olson to really allow me to establish an initial weekly routine to get ready and set to do this.”

(On the possibility of getting his team out of an 0-7 slump)
“I take it as a challenge. I can’t really control what the defense does but I can control what the offense does. I’m the quarterback. It gets to the matter of just getting something going. Ultimately as an offensive player you look at it as no matter what defense or special teams are doing, it’s our job to score one more point than the other team. That’s the mindset we are taking into it.”

(On if he is aware of what is on his shoulders and if it is overwhelming)
“Obviously that has been brought up to me, a lot of people have said things to me. That’s not heavy on my mind because I’m just looking at it from a personal standpoint of what I want to do and my career goals I set up even before the draft happened. My goal is to wherever I got drafted, I want to be there my whole career and win a lot of football games. I think the pressure I put on myself outweighs that in my mind. They both kind of run together.”

(On if he aims to complete a certain number of passes)
“It just comes down to keeping the chains moving. It’s situational football. There are a lot of different things that can happen in a game. It’s not really setting an exact number of completions. A lot of it is heavy on third down conversions. We are just going to try to convert them all.”

(On the mentality of a rookie)
“Obviously there is a little bit of an intimidation factor but this is something that kids have dreamed about their whole lives. As kids they want to play in the NFL and I’m finally getting that chance. Honestly once you get into the game week and you prepare, watch a lot of film, it becomes about playing football, not ‘Oh, I’m in the NFL.’”

(On his confidence)
“My confidence hasn’t wavered. I really don’t think what round a player is drafted in effects his chances of what he is going to be. You see a number of guys who haven’t been drafted in the first round having successful careers. I don’t think it’s necessarily what round you’re drafted in. I think it’s your makeup and how much work you put in.”

(On what he hopes to bring)
“There are a number of things. We just have a find a way to win. We have been in a lot of games. It’s just going to be a matter of finding a way to win. There isn’t one thing that you can pinpoint as to why we are losing or else we would put all of our time and energy into that and we would stop losing. It’s just going to be a matter of developing some sort of consistency to be able to sustain a high a level of play throughout four quarters.”

(On if guys still believe they can win)
“We always believe we can win or else there would be no point in suiting up. You go out there and every week everyone prepares really hard. We want to win. That’s why we play the game.”

(On what he learned in London)
“I learned that teams are probably going to bring a lot at me as far as blitzes. I’m prepared for that because that opens up a lot of stuff down the field and in the middle of the field. Also, it felt good to be back out there, just calling the plays in the huddle and getting my feet wet again. I’m excited to get a whole game in this Sunday.”

(On the play around the quarterback)

“Regardless of who is at that position, there has to be a sense of urgency to get better around as a team. The self-inflicted things are the stuff that we need to improve on with Josh Freeman in there or whoever is in there. Basically as a team we need to clean things up and move forward and just keep getting better.”

(On if that is something everyone simply knows or if it was discussed)
“It’s been discussed. It’s just things that we have to stop discussing and start putting it into action. That’s the only way we are going to get better.”

(On problems with the offensive line)
“Not necessarily missed assignments, it’s just the break downs here and there. It’s not one position, it’s not one guy, just one here one there. It’s really holding us back from us putting together a whole, complete work. It’s just something that we have to really visualize and really focus on the small little things that make up the whole scope of work.”

(On the Buccaneers now being a more of an offensive team)
“That’s something that is a welcome challenge and a welcome responsibility on this side of the ball. I think it’s important that we take that by the horns and really run with it. There is enough talent on this offense to carry this team and there is definitely talent on defense. I just think we could be playing better on offense. We need to step it up.”

(On the Green Bay offense)

“I’ve seen them on tape already. They are a smart team, they have a lot of experience. They have a lot of key players. Greg Jennings is one of the guys who is big on the team right now with receptions. Aaron Rodgers is a great quarterback. He learned from the best so you have to expect the best out of him.”

(On putting on the throwbacks jersey’s)
“Oh yea! I’m ready for that! Actually I haven’t been able to play in a throwback game so this is going to be fun for me. It will add a little swagger to it. I’ll see what I can do with it.”

(On the Packers game)

“Yeah, I watched it – Brett Favre, return to Lambeau. I got to sneak a peek at that on Sunday and I got to watch some of it today, too. Green Bay’s starting to do some great things right now. Aaron Rodgers looks like a young Brett Favre back in his day. They’ve got weapons – they’ve got [Donald] Driver, they’ve got [Greg] Jennings – they’ve got an offensive line that blocks well within the group, so they have a pretty good offense.”

(On Aaron Rodgers being mobile)
“He’s running to throw. A lot of times if he sees eight back in coverage then he’ll run it out of the pocket. But if he knows you’re going to have to the front four rushing him he really tries to rally to find a receiver open. He’s very crafty; that’s why I say he reminds me of a younger Brett Favre.”

(On the Throwback Game and honoring Lee Roy Selmon)
“I think it’s going to be great. We’re honoring the legendary Buc, the guy who started it off. Whatever uniform they put on us, we have to go out there and A) get the victory and B) represent the first day of honoring the Ring of Honor. There’s a lot to play for. The fans are going to be great out there. Old school, new school – it will be a great gathering of Buccaneer fans on Sunday.”

Courtesy of the Buccaneers Relations Department

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