Originally written on The Bay Cave  |  Last updated 1/11/15

A couple weeks back, Buccaneers’ head coach Greg Schiano said he had left tricks in the bag against Carolina. In the loss to the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday, it seemed as if the Bucs would go the entire game without any trickery. That was until the fourth quarter came along. The botched reverse on the kickoff return between Eric Page and Russell Sheppard has made headlines and has been turned into jokes on social media. Being down 23-14 at the time, the Bucs should not have even considered going for something like that with over four minutes left in the game. End result was a fumble recovery and touchdown by San Francisco from inside the 10-yard line. So what exactly was discussed on the sideline before the return? According to Schiano after the game, the reverse was to be run only if it looked good to run it. “It was a called play,” Schiano said. “We were going to run a reverse if the opportunity presented itself the right way. It didn’t, yet we still ran it, but it’s okay. We made a mistake. Guys make mistakes sometimes.” Assuming that “guy” that made a mistake being Eric Page, he was asked about what happened on the reverse. He too says the play was called. “We have been working on that play for a few weeks,” Page said. “Yeah, it was called before we went out. It just wasn’t executed right. “I mean, I will have to take a good look at [the tape]. We executed it in practice. It just didn’t work the way we thought it would work. There was obviously a handoff issue. I think that was the biggest thing. I have to watch it [on tape] again, I think it was just a handoff issue.” So the play did legitimately come from the sidelines (or in other words, the coaches). Schiano said it was to be done if the opportunity to run it was there. That leaves the decision on the player. The question here should be why, with being down just nine points, even discuss a play that may not be successful? Schiano stated guys make mistakes sometimes and he is right. But coaches do as well. And in this case, it was a mistake on the coaches to even allow a high risk play to be called.

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