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30 October 2017

Transcript: Tampa Bay Buccaneers Media Availability (10/30/17)

BUC BIT OF THE DAY: Buccaneers TE Cam Brate has recorded at least 60 receiving yards in each of the past five games, the longest such streak by a tight end in team history. During that streak, Brate has also caught at least four passes in each game, becoming one of only seven players in team history to do so (Mike Evans three times; Mark Carrier, Michael Clayton, Lawrence Dawsey, Joey Galloway and Keyshawn Johnson, once each).
Below is a transcript of Head Coach Dirk Koetter’s earlier media availability:
(On how much quarterback Jameis Winston may have been affected by not throwing every day in practice)
“There’s no way to measure that – how much he was affected. It was the exact same as the week before and I believe that Jameis played one of his better games against Buffalo, and it was exactly the same as that. How do you put a measurement on that? I don’t know the answer to that. As far as moving forward, nothing will be decided on that until Wednesday based on what the medical staff says and how Jameis feels.”
(On linebacker Kendell Beckwith leaving the game for a few plays)
“They took a look at that surgically repaired knee that he had. He had to go out for a few plays. He did come back in and play again in the game. He did get an MRI on that knee this morning and it looks like he is going to be okay.”
(On if Winston’s shoulder injury has any damage to his rotator cuff)
“No, not to my knowledge.”
(On if there is a common theme in the offensive line drawing penalties on first down)
“We had six penalties for the game and zero on defense, two on special teams and four on offense. Unfortunately, the timing of those offensive ones, the three major penalties we had on offense were all on first down. Actually, there were four: One on Peyton [Barber], two on Donovan [Smith] and one on J.R. [Sweezy]. The one on Peyton negated an explosive pass to Mike [Evans]. Unfortunate timing I would say would be the main thing. I don’t think there’s any common denominator. Donovan got beat one time, was trying to recover and got his hands in [Julius Peppers’] face and it was a good call. J.R. was trying to recover on one, but I don’t think there is any common denominator.”
(On if he feels good about the team’s discipline in terms of penalties)
“Yeah. I think we are sixth or seventh in the league. We were 18th last year [and] 32nd the year before so our goal was to get in the top five. All penalties that take you back that are major and hurt your drive are not good and unfortunately, it came up three times in the first half yesterday.”
(On Winston’s performance against Carolina)
“Yeah, it was not Jameis’ best game. He played much better the week before against Buffalo. Jameis missed some throws that he normally makes.”
(On if the lack of practice time could be a factor)
“Again, I can’t explain why he would play so well in Buffalo and then miss some throws. The one thing that was different is it was much windier yesterday. That was about as windy of a game as I’ve been in in a long time in the NFL. I’m not sure how much that affected him.”
(On how much of a factor Panthers linebacker Luke Kuechly was on the team’s third-down conversion rate)
“That wasn’t our issue. We missed a couple throws that we should have had. We were on the wrong side of the read one time. They got us on a couple pressures where Jameis was rushed. A combination of some things they did, not necessarily Kuechly’s awareness – although he does have that – and plays we didn’t make.”
(On what led to an improved defensive performance)
“Tackling in general was much better, especially open-field tackling. Our run fits were a lot more consistent and our corner play was much better.”
(On if cornerbacks Robert McClain and Brent Grimes have a chance to come back this week)
“The guys that are in concussion protocol – that’s protocol. We still have two players in concussion protocol – Bobby (McClain) and Josh Robinson. Brent is improving but I’m not sure if he will be able to go this week.”
(On what he attributes to the team not clicking in all three parts of the game)
“[There are] just too many breakdowns at inopportune times. One guy breakdown here, one guy breakdown here, penalty there, turnover there – everything starts with turnovers. You can’t turn the ball over three times. When you’re pressing sometimes – we had some issues with guys trying to do too much. We don’t always make plays that we can make [and] that I’ve seen us make many times on the throw-and-catch part. We’re just not playing complementary football enough. One side of the ball is playing good, the other side not good. Then it flip-flops the next week. Until we do that, until we do the things consistently that it takes to win, then we’re going to struggle to win.”
(On his message to the team)
“First off, everyone is disappointed. Everyone is frustrated. But the frustrations that we feel, I say it all the time, no one has higher expectations for us than we have for ourselves. That’s never going to change. If guys aren’t like that then they’re in the wrong place. Secondly, we know what it takes to win in the NFL but if you don’t consistently win the turnover battle, if you don’t create explosive plays and not give up explosive plays – in this game turnover and third downs were our biggest issues. But, the six or eight things we strive to do every week – we are just not doing enough of them on a consistent basis.”
(On if Winston’s mechanics looked different against Carolina)
(On if there is a theme on the team’s opening drives that results in them failing to reach the end zone)
“The common theme is just what you said, that sometimes we are just not making the plays that are there to be made. That happened in Buffalo last week. We ended up having to kick field goals on the first two drives. This last week we didn’t get in position to even kick a field goal. We made first downs on a couple of drives, but then we would either have a penalty or have some kind of a negative play that took us out.”
(On if there is any scenario in which Winston wouldn’t start, assuming he is medically cleared)
“There’s three factors in that. First and foremost is what the medical staff says – that’s for every player, but Jameis is at the front of the list. Second is the player. The player knows if he can go or not. Third, when we watch them practice, if it doesn’t look like they can go, or it looks like they can’t go at a success rate good enough for us to win we would always hold them out. But, we haven’t had any of those things.”
(On if Winston suffered any setbacks yesterday)
“He’s making progress. I watch the quarterbacks all the time and I was actually calling for Fitz (Ryan Fitzpatrick) to get ready. Jameis took a hit in the second half and just by the way he was carrying himself I didn’t know if it was his shoulder, if he got the wind knocked out of him [or] if it was something else. He looked like he was hurting. But on that play where he took that hit, we completed it and we were moving forward. I was ready to have Fitz go, I was calling for him, but Jameis played through it and was fine.”
(On if he checked to make sure Winston was okay afterward)
“If I think Jameis is hurting when he comes off, I always ask him if he’s okay. I’m looking at his face and I’m looking at his body language. He said he was okay.”
(On if he thinks that his team potentially bought into the hype at the beginning of the season)
“I can see how you would ask that, but I also don’t see how you can measure that. As you said, I feel like we did continually talk to our guys about that. I think we have strong leadership on our team. I think we have mature guys for the most part. Obviously, that’s a theory that could be true, but I just don’t know how you would prove it and I don’t know what the evidence is.”
(On his confidence in the team’s ability to bounce back)
“I have 100 percent confidence in that because I believe in their ability. I told the guys today, ‘When you’re winning, the confidence grows.’ There’s no better example right now than the team we play this week. New Orleans started off 1-2 and now they’ve won four in a row. You can see it on the tape. I’ve been looking at some tape this afternoon. They’ve always had confidence on offense, but you can see their confidence on defense. The same holds true the other way when you lose four in a row. It’s not so much your confidence because we’ve got confident players. These players have all done it before or they wouldn’t be in the NFL. It’s your belief. It’s your belief in the system, your belief in each other, your belief in the other side of the ball, your belief in your teammates – very rarely is it belief in self.”

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