Posted by ESPN.com’s Pat Yasinskas
Tampa Bay coach Raheem Morris has been taking some heat for his team’s 0-2 start. Heck, he was taking heat during the offseason and people were questioning if he knew what he was doing.
Morris deserves some time to let his approach take hold and there was a positive sign in Monday’s press conference. Morris is a motivator and a pretty straight-forward guy and that showed through when he criticized third-year defensive end Gaines Adams.
“He hasn’t [put forth the production], and I think Gaines knows that,” Morris said. “Gaines is one of those guys that knows that he is judged on whether he touches the quarterback or not. Right now he is not getting production as far as not just touching the quarterback, the tackles, the sacks. He’s not getting any of that. He is not playing up to par right now. He’s holding himself accountable. We have to hold him accountable, and it is tough right now. He is not getting it done. There are no excuses. There are no explanations. Gaines is not getting it done right now.”
Good for Morris for being honest and not giving the answer so many coaches do that “sacks don’t mean everything.’’ For a defensive end, sacks pretty much do mean everything. And good for Morris for trying to light yet another fire under Adams by mentioning that Stylez G. White and Tim Crowder could be candidates to take the spot in the starting lineup if something doesn’t change soon.
“Last year to start off the season his whole thing was to play hard -- to play harder than the people he was playing against,” said Morris. “Right now I just don’t see that. I don’t see that same fire. I don’t see him playing the same speed as how hard he played last year. We got to get that back. We got to get that back from him. If we don’t get that back it is going to be a long season for Gaines, and us.”