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Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Sapp questions plan for Bucs’ defenders

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Published:   |   Updated: November 7, 2013 at 08:33 AM

TAMPA — The legion of critics that has consistently questioned Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano’s coaching methods includes a Hall of Fame defensive tackle who will soon be inducted into the Buccaneers’ Ring of Honor.

Now an analyst for the NFL Network, Warren Sapp is being paid to weigh in on such issues, and he isn’t letting up even as he prepares to be honored by the team on Monday night.

“Darrelle Revis is a lock down corner and (defensive tackle) Gerald McCoy needs to be swung from side to side so they can find a one on one for him the same way they did for me,’’ Sapp said during a stop at One Buc Place on Wednesday.

“These aren’t facts that are in dispute. That’s why I don’t think I’ll have a problem coming back here and seeing my guys and walking into this place. It’s not personal for me. This is a place I know and love. I want to see it excel.’’

If Schiano has a problem with Sapp’s critique, he isn’t letting on. He said Thursday that he had lunch with Sapp at One Buc Place on Wednesday and thoroughly enjoyed their conversation.

“It’s just like turning on the TV show,’’ Schiano said. “It’s funny, you laugh your you-know-whats off, and we covered a lot of things. Football not really that much. It was a lot more about other stuff.’’

Sapp stuck mostly to football in his critique, saying McCoy is excelling even though he doesn’t have the stats to show it. McCoy has just two sacks through eight games, but Sapp says those numbers are largely a result of the way McCoy is being used.

“He’s not getting the opportunities,’’ Sapp said. “That’s what it is. I mean, I don’t get it. Am I the only one who’s watching tape here? I’m trying to figure out the plan that you have here.

“I watched Gerald against the (guard) from Arizona and (in one series) he beat him with an outside move, then beat he beat him with an inside rush. Now it’s third down, the (running) back is offset and (McCoy is over on the (other) side (of the line).

“I was screaming at the television set – ‘Get back over there.’ You just beat this guy twice and almost had a sack both times, so now come back for the third down and get us off the field.’’

Schiano disputed Sapp’s claim that McCoy isn’t being matched up in a way that will allow him to make more plays.

“We match Gerald up all game long,’’ Schiano said. “All you have to do is turn the TV on. He lines up on the left, he lines up on the right, he lines up over center. We’re moving him all over to get the matchup, so I think (Sapp’s opinion and mine) are more the same than different.’’

rcummings@tampatrib.com

(813) 259-7979

Twitter: @RcummingsTBO

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