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Raheem Morris Sends DT Brian Price to Locker Room After Unsportmanlike Penalty

Sometimes a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty just won’t cut it.  As a coach, you have to make a tough decision every once in a while to bench a player who makes an undisciplined mistake during a game.  In fact, there are times when benching a player isn’t even enough.  When something like that happens, Tampa Bay head coach Raheem Morris isn’t afraid to kick his own players out of the game.  Morris showed us that on Sunday when he sent defensive tackle Brian Price to the locker room following Price’s unnecessary roughness penalty that cost the Bucs 15 yards against the Panthers.  Morris was not shying in addressing the issue following the game, either.

“Yes, I sent him to the locker room,” Morris explained according to the Tampa Bay Times. “I told him go home. F***. Yeah. Because it’s foolish, it’s selfish to your teammates, to everybody in your organization, to your fans. That’s terrible. That’s just selfish behavior to get a 15-yard penalty, in that situation, when that’s all we talk about, when that’s all we discuss. You just can’t do that to your team.

“When you give up a penalty, after a third-and-15, those are things that are not smart, not fair to anybody on the football team. Not fair to anybody that’s coaching that football team. Those things are unacceptable.”

Talk about embarrassing.  I’m sure Price felt humiliated when his coach literally sent him home, but there’s no excuse for dumb penalties like that from a professional athlete.  Morris wants his group of guys to embrace toughness and be as “Yungry” as they can be, but he obviously felt the need to make an example out of someone after 12 games of what has been a disappointing season.  I’d be willing to bet that’s the last unsportsmanlike conduct penalty you see from Price this year.

Raheem Morris Even has a ‘Yungry’ Hat

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ motto entering the season was “yungry.” The saying was created by the team because they fancied themselves a young and hungry bunch. Apparently they’ve subscribed to that motto so heavily that head coach Raheem Morris even had a hat customized to say “Yungry.”

Their intentions are good, but they’re a far cry from what they were last season. Quarterback Josh Freeman threw for 25 touchdowns and only six interceptions last season. This year, he already has two picks and only two TDs. Maybe playing as mistake-free as he did last season was impossible to duplicate.

They were able to pull the game out in Minnesota Sunday, but this team is lacking the surprise factor they had going for them last year. Their defense is average and their offense isn’t explosive enough to compete with the elite teams. How they handle the Falcons at home Sunday will say a lot about where they are as a team. I’m not expecting a win.

Pic via NFL.com, tip via LBS contributor Patrick Crawley

Raheem Morris Doubles as Rays Manager for a Day

After stumbling to a 3-13 season in his debut as an NFL head coach with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Raheem Morris went 10-6 in his second year. The sophomore campaign for the young head coach inflated his sense of self to the point where he thinks he can be an effective coach in two sports now. OK that was just a joke, but Morris is actually good friends with Rays manager Joe Maddon and he and his staff were invited to spend the day with the Rays on Tuesday.

“It was all about Raheem,” said Rays manager Joe Maddon, who invited the Buccaneers coach and his staff to spend a day in spring training with the AL East champions.

“I gave him the game ball,” Maddon said. “He did a great job with the pitching change. … There was nice conversation during the course of the game. It was a fun day.”

The pitching change to which Maddon referred was when he pulled James Shields in the 4th inning. Shields described what happened, saying “He walked to the mound, and he’s like, ‘So, what do we do now?’” Shields relayed. “I was like, ‘You’re supposed to get the ball from me.’ And he’s like, ‘Oh, okay, then hand me the ball.’ Then he’s like, ‘So, what are we doing after the game? Is this what we’re supposed to talk about out there?’ It was pretty funny.”

Here’s a video of both Morris and Maddon talking about the experience, including Maddon saying he wanted his players to gain some football toughness.

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Raheem Morris Says Coach to Quarterback Radio Went Out on Key Play in 4th Quarter

If you remember back during the Spygate allegations a few years ago, another claim that emerged was that the Patriots were sabotaging opponents’ headsets during key moments in games. Since the home team has control over stadium communications, such a move would not be a surprise. Guess what? It sounds like the Atlanta Falcons employed the same maneuver.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers lost to the Falcons 27-21 on Sunday coming back from down 27-14. Late in the 4th quarter the Bucs drove inside the 10 and had a 3rd and 3 at the four yard line. They handed to LeGarrette Blount who gained two yards, making it a 4th and 1 at the two. If you saw the action or the video replay, quarterback Josh Freeman didn’t receive the communication from the coaches and didn’t know what play to call for the critical moment. He wound up burning a timeout with a few seconds left on the playclock and the offense had to reset. They wound up handing off to Blount on 4th and 1 and got stopped, but what’s interesting is what Raheem Morris is saying a day later.

The Tampa Bay coach says there was some funny business going on at that time. Rick Stroud reported on twitter that “Bucs coach Raheem Morris says the coach to QB radio ‘mysteriously,’ went off in ATL after one play near the goal line, forcing a timeout.” I don’t doubt the truth of his allegation based on what we saw.

Is it a dirty practice? Yes. Do most teams do it? You bet. Does it make it right? No. But it sure as heck is part of the reason why homefield advantage is such a big deal in football. Oh yeah, it also must be pointed out that radio communications had nothing to do with the Bucs losing; they lined up against the Falcons and needed just one yard on a 4th and 1 and got stuffed. They didn’t deserve to win after that stop.