Anxiety, angst, anger -- all words that could describe the mood around an 0-7 team.
But Bucs head coach Greg Schiano is attempting to relax the atmosphere, energizing a group of players with, at times, a funny face (seen at practice) and a positive perspective.
"I love what I do," Schiano said. "Twenty-six years, I get up every morning excited to do it. Some days aren't real fun to walk in the post-game press conference. It's nothing personal, but you just got your ears kicked in. I know you're going to ask the questions. I would ask the questions if I was a reporter. I'd have to ask the questions, that isn't always fun. It isn't fun for some of the stuff your family has to go through. But my job is the best."
So how does a hard-nosed coach who has been described as "autocratic" lighten the mood in a dire situation?
Dekoda Watson says it's not Schiano's performance, it's his effort.
"He tries," Watson laughed. "I think that's what probably makes it so funny. It's that he's trying to be funny."
"He's having fun being a head coach of an NFL team," said Gerald McCoy. "People dream to do that. He has an opportunity to do it. He's going to have fun with it as long as he has it."
Schiano's approach is to never let them see you sweat -- despite being an 18-point underdog to a team that hasn't lost at home in two seasons.
"We're going out to what I think is one of the greatest venues in sport," Schiano said. "I can't wait for them to raise that flag, and here we go. It's going to be nuts. They get the loud crowd and Mike (Glennon) is ready to handle it. You know, we've got that think cranking in my ears (speakers at practice). I still hear a humming from the noise that we had all practice."
"That's the nice thing we have as coaches and players, no matter what happened the week before. Get back in that building and by the time you get to Sunday there is not a doubt in your mind that you are going to win that game."
That kind of demeanor is why Schiano still has the attention of his team.
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