TAMPA — Darrelle Revis has a message for frustrated fans of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers: We’re close.
The Bucs hit the bye week at 0-4, but three of the losses came by a combined margin of six points as they prepare for Sunday’s home matchup against the Eagles.
“There’s a lot of football still to be played,’’ said Revis, an All-Pro cornerback who was acquired from the Jets in an April trade. “Yes, we’re disappointed for being 0-4 because we could be 3-1. We felt only New England (23-3) legitimately beat us.
“That’s what keeps guys positive and keeps them from falling into a trap. We’re not getting out-classed, we’re not getting out-coached. …We’re one or two plays away. As soon as we get our first win, I think that will clear a lot of the smoke and we’ll rack up some more.’’
Revis shadowed Arizona’s Larry Fitzgerald for much of the day in Week 4 as the Cardinals rallied for a 13-10 triumph. On Sunday, Revis faces the challenge of containing DeSean Jackson, averaging 18.8 yards on his 28 receptions.
On Tuesday, the fleet Jackson said “Revis can’t run with me.”
“I’m not fast,’’ Revis answered Wednesday with a laugh. “I’ve never been fast. He’s fast. Fast people are allowed to say those types of things. I’ve covered him before and it was a good battle. We’ll see what happens this time around. I’m not running for the Olympics — and he’s not, either. I’m here to compete and play.’’
A year removed from knee surgery, Revis is still not fully recovered.
“I feel like I’m not there yet,’’ he said. “It’s a long process with an ACL injury and the good thing about it is I’m improving every week.’’
The 2012 Bucs took off after an early bye week, reeling off five wins within a six-week stretch to improve to 6-4. Revis said the timing of this year’s bye week should play to Tampa Bay’s benefit.
“I think it was good for us to get away,’’ Revis said. “What a better time for us to have it, especially the way the season has been going. Guys got to get away and clear their minds from football a little bit.’’
Before the Glazer family, which owns the Bucs, hired Greg Schiano on Jan. 27, 2012, they offered their head coaching job to Chip Kelly, who turned them down to remain at Oregon.
A year later, Kelly replaced Andy Reid on the Philadelphia sideline.
“I looked at (the Tampa Bay job) very hard,’’ Kelly said Wednesday. “I met with Joel and Ed and Bryan (Glazer) and (GM) Mark Dominik and was really impressed with those guys. My decision, at that point of time, was about where I was. When push came to shove, I couldn’t leave them. My decision to not take that job was totally about the University of Oregon, not the Buccaneers.’’
As Kelly contemplated Tampa Bay’s offer, Schiano was dealing with mixed emotions as head coach at Rutgers.
“One of the things that actually led me to believe that this was the time (to leave Rutgers) was when I thought that Chip had accepted the (Tampa) job,’’ Schiano said. “I was angry. I was disappointed is a better word, probably, so that kind of told me that I did want it.’’
Second time around
Offensive coordinator Mike Sullivan has had an extra week to prepare rookie QB Mike Glennon for his second pro start. Glennon might lack NFL experience, but Sullivan said he has more than enough composure to get the job done.
“Since the day he got here, he’s had a great work ethic and a maturity about him,’’ Sullivan said of the third-round draft pick out of North Carolina State. “Talk about those rookies who are 22, going on 42. His teammates have been able to see a guy that it’s not too big for him, that he is willing to stay in there and put his face in the fan, so to speak.’’