To say that things for the Buccaneers and new head coach Greg Schiano didn’t start well would be a euphemism. Ron Rivera could definitely relate to Schiano. After starting his first two seasons with the Panthers 2-8 and then starting this season 1-3, it seemed that Rivera was on his way out. However, since the 1-3 start this season, the Panthers have won 7 straight and Rivera is the hottest coach in the NFL.
Schiano is now on the tail end of a three-game win streak after starting 0-8. Before that rumors circulated about mishappenings within the Buccaneers locker room, and billboards were even placed throughout the Tampa area asking for Schiano to be fired. According to NBC Sports Rivera was asked how he viewed Schiano’s situation in Tampa.
“Just stay the course. Look, he’s been successful, he’s had success, he was successful in college, major college football, he’s had some success as a coach in the NFL, now it’s just a matter of time. Last year I was in the same situation and we got on a roll at the end of the year and now this year we’ve gotten on a roll again. It’s just so hard to win in this league and you’ve got to develop your team first. I think people have to be willing to take the lumps and accept it. There was a time back in the day when guys would be drafted in the first and second round and nobody expected him to play until three-four years down the line. Now you draft a guy and everybody says why isn’t he on the field, he’s a bust.
“Well everybody wants that instant gratification and I think it’s the same thing when you bring in a new head coach and everybody says ‘He should be great at what he’s doing, they should be winning right now.’ Well, evaluate, be realistic in your evaluations and I think you get a better sense of how long it’s going to take, if you’re realistic. If you’re not looking pie in the sky you sit there and go ‘Wow they need to do this, they need to do that, that guy needs to develop, that guy needs time, oh they’ve got to replace this guy, or this guy’s got to grow.’ I like who Tampa Bay is going to become and they’re on their way. Coach Schiano’s doing a great job. It’s just again be patient and just stick with it.”
Maybe Schiano has gotten things settled in his locker room, but that remains to be seen.