Raheem Morris blames Gerald McCoy’s injury on Gerald McCoy


On Sunday, Buccaneers defensive lineman Gerald McCoy was lost for the year with a torn biceps muscle.  On Monday, coach Raheem Morris rubbed McCoy’s face in the injured area by blaming the incident on tackling form.

It goes back to Pop Warner,” Morris told WDAE on Monday, via JoeBucsFan.com.  “All your Pop Warner coaches tell you, ‘Don’t arm tackle.’ And that’s exactly why.  You gotta put your chest on people.  You gotta have your eyes up.  Sky your eyes and do the right thing all the time, or it’s going to happen in football.  You’re going to get hurt.”

Regardless of whether Morris is right (and he probably is), publicly calling out a key player whose error has resulted in a significant injury may not be the best way to retain the affections of the locker room.

Even Pop Warner coaches know that.

45 responses to “Raheem Morris blames Gerald McCoy’s injury on Gerald McCoy

  1. It’s a little hyperbolic to label this as Raheem Morris calling a player out. He’s just explaining why injuries like this occur and how best to prevent them, if possible. A quality player is going to go all out on every play and arm tackle if that’s his last, best opportunity to bring somebody down.

    If the Bucs locker room falls apart on account of these quotes it wasn’t on solid footing to begin with.


  2. “Even Pop Warner coaches know that.”

    Oh snap!

    …wait… are the kids still saying “snap”?

  3. Let’s see if I understand correctly…Raheem continues to make excuses for that punk Talib, yet calls out McCoy for an injury. If Morris has concerns about McCoy’s technique, he should probably discuss that privately with his player. If I was McCoy, i’d be ten kinds of pissed off.

  4. So defensive players should only attempt to tackle if they can put their chest on someone? RB’s would love that. At least they dude was trying to make a tackle. He could have Haynesworth’ed it.

  5. Even Pop Warner coaches will tell you that roids will lead to increase in joint and tendon injuries (which is what a bicep tearing away from the bone is).

  6. for those saying that it’s the coaches job to teach tackling, remember that the players union pushed for limits on what you can do in practice. You almost never see players practice tackling anymore. No more two-a-days and “walk through only” practices means that fundamentals are no longer practiced and instead they only do installation of the offense and defense. That’s what they wanted…that’s what they got…

  7. If GMC hurt hadn’t hurt himself before and Rah called him out it would be cause for pause but this is year TWO of GMC hurting himself, ostensibly, in the same fashion.

    Rah is a players coach so I don’t think a little bit of tough love is going to hurt.

  8. I would hope that with all the time and hard work that its taken for McCoy to get to the NFL level, which is the pinnacle point of all football players, it wouldn’t take a head coach to teach him how to tackle people. Its like Braylon Edwards, he drops easy passes, is that a coaching problem? No, its a Braylon problem. Injuries happen, arm tackles happen. Its all just part of the game

  9. It’s becoming more and more clear that Raheem is not the man for the job here in Tampa. Week in and week out this team is outcoached by a mile and every postgame press conference it’s always the same crap. “We didn’t play hard enough…we didn’t have the want-to…we were out-physicaled”. Not once has he taken the blame or put the blame on the rest of his staff when they are clearly the problem. Every freakin Sunday Tampa is down two scores before you can blink. Freeman has regressed as Olson holds him back with his dink-and-dunk watered down Gruden playbook. Oh yeah, we also went away from our ONLY running back in the 3rd quarter of last game when he was averaging 5.5 yards per carry. The staff is totally clueless – Blount had 5 carries against Detroit. 5 FREAKING CARRIES in the first game of the season when he was 100%. Wouldn’t want to run the ball and control the clock, would we? They preach about ‘build through the draft’ but they are waaaayyyy to extreme with that plan (and don’t capitalize on their draft picks enough to make it work). This team has been left with a gross lack of talent at linebacker, cornerback, running back, and the right tackle spot. I know I’m sounding like a crazy angry ranting guy but this is what it feels like to be a Buccaneer fan now. I’ll admit I was fooled last year. I look like an idiot because I stuck up for the team after others said they were just capitalizing off an easy schedule. I have been completely humbled. Go to Buc fan sites, you’ll see this kind of anger all over the place. Raheem better stop making up stupid words and start coaching or else we’ll get someone in here that will and you will be fireminated (tried to put it in terms he could understand).

    P.S. Way to throw Gerald under the bus Rah. Step on him when he’s down. Sometimes, in the trenches, when you’re held, all you can get is an arm out and hope to make a play. You just lost your best defensive player and have to replace him with the oversized cardboard cut out that is Roy Miller. You’re done. Hopefully they’ll get a real coach and you won’t have to deal with this clown next year Gerald.

  10. Morris is coaching. This is a teaching moment. Assuming that he previously coached his players on not arm tackling, he is reinforcing the importantce of it. Sometimes millionaire athletes choose to ignore advice because they think they know better afterall they made it this far doing it their way, well when the consequences are pointed out and it is a real-life example not a hypothetical they might be more inclined to soak up what the coach is saying.

    As for losing the locker room, it is reported that Morris is one of the more highly respected coaches in his locker room. Based on how well the team overachieved when he took over, I think those reports are accurate and I think his players (including McCoy) will take this lesson as it was intended and that is to be better prepare them and to protect them!

  11. Gruden left a lot of bitter feelings in Tampa. Players said he talked out both sides of his mouth and they couldn’t trust him. These public comments from Morris seem harsh. But at least he isn’t playing the Gruden game of hyping McCoy as the greatest ever … while privately slamming him to other coaches. McCoy knows where he stands–and other Tampa players will remember to use proper tackling technique.

  12. This should have been said in private and it will piss off the guys in the lockeroom. You’re in a brotherhood and should never air your dirty laundry to the media. Its called being mature as a coach.

  13. @kd727

    Relax buddy! I don’t know what game you’ve been watching but McCoy is not their best defensive player. Calling out the LB’s? Give me a break. It’s hard to tackle people when the garbage defensive line is sitting in their lap 5 yards down the field because they can’t get off a block. I like McCoy, but he has a long way to go. Coaching is far from the problem. Raheem can’t make plays for them, they need to do that themselves. Which isn’t happening. Like Talib and Black…… Go Bucs!

  14. Maybe Morris should do more coaching, and less talking. His team seems to have taken several steps back this season. It’s surprising such an awesome “players’ coach” would throw one of his players under the bus like this.

  15. Raheem morris is just telling the truth, i remember when McCoy didnt lift well in pre draft workouts did anyone not see this coming? If im morris im pissed im losing my top ten pick for the rest or the season so Raheem gonna zing him so he doesnt get to happy or content in his 5 bedroom house after surgery lets McCoy know be ready to Hit next year. I luv it..

  16. canetic says:
    …dude was trying to make a tackle. He could have Haynesworth’ed it.
    Does this rather interesting sobriquet refer to getting pancaked, or adamantly refusing to play in a team’s defensive scheme, or viciously stomping on the head of a player who’s already down, or avoiding a team physical and pre-season, or getting cut soon after collecting many millions of Snyder dollars, or just plain overeating?

  17. Morris is working with what the front office is giving him… we are always a pick or two too late to take the best players. We missed out on getting Calvin, and got Adams. I am actually glad we didn’t get Suh, he rubs alot of people the wrong way. McCoy is a class act, he made a bonehead play and got hurt. He will be back better than ever. Until then, I am for Haynesworth getting back to the 4-3 he used to dominate in.

  18. Just as the Bucs are a young team that will make mistakes along the way Rah is a young coach who will do the same. Rah was ready to be the defensive coordinator but due to our soccer loving owners he wound up jumping a level without the necessary time to learn. He brings a huge motor to the position but because of the Glazer’s we are going to have to allow him to grow with this young team.
    Nothing he said is a problem unless the players have a problem with it and they seem to be behind the guy. The problem I have is our defunct offense and regressing QB in addition to the fact that injuries will kill us. That is a reality of the NFL though when your owners won’t pay to have any decent young free agents not to mention the less than 1 million dollars that it would have cost to re-sign Caddy who was Freeman’s best friend in the backfield.

  19. I said it then, I’ll say it now. I would have given three first round picks for Suh! McCoy is going to be another in a long, long line of first-round D linemen that busts! The guy was outbenched at the combine by D-backs!!!!!

  20. Look people…enough of how bad Gruden was and how he did this and that. You idiot Buc fans still cried when he got you a Super Bowl with “Dungy’s Team” Get over it. Raheem is a rambling goof and isnt the answer at head coach. The Bucs suck again. This is the same team and ownership that cant sell out games and didnt even bother to properly honor the ONLY Hall of Fame player they ever had in his passing. Choke Tampa

  21. I don’t understand the big fuss about what Morris said. It is a good reminder of why players should practice proper form tackling until it is instinctual. Injuries occur when players make mistakes (they also happen for other reasons) and injuries can be reduced by players using proper technique. This is hardly breaking news.

  22. This may be news to the fans and media, but I’m guessing it’s a non-issue in the locker room. My guess is, anyone who watched the film immediately saw why it happened.

    A couple years ago, I was at a game in which former Titans DB Vincent Fuller broke his forearm.

    After the game, I happened to be passing by as Fuller met his family outside the stadium, and overheard him explaining to them, “I was trying to tackle a guy, but I used bad technique and hit him wrong, and it just broke.”

    In otherwords….I’m guessing McCoy probably knew from the moment that it happened that the injury was the result of poor techique. And Morris’ comments weren’t meant as criticism….he’s just stating a fact. “Hey…..stuff happens, y’know?”

    Coaches teach proper technique not just to make players better tacklers, but also to keep them healthy and their bodies intact. When a player uses improper technique, he not only increases the chances of blowing the play….he’s also putting himself at risk.

    And in this unfortunate instance, it cost McCoy the rest of his season.

  23. Raheem is a horrible coach and the only reason he has a job is he came at a bargain basement price. For all the young talent on this team, they cant beat teams with a winning record. 10 wins in 2010 was a fluke for playing a 3-13 schedule that anyone could have coached to 10 wins. They get out coached every week. Gruden, Shottenheimer, Rob Ryan

  24. I did not see very much tackleing at all last week. So maybe it is the coaching . Back to basics. Arm or chest ? Just get it done ! GO BUCS

  25. Really? The coaches at the NFL level have to teach guys to tackle properly???? Shouldn’t they have learned this by now?

    If you need to teach tackling, then there are much bigger issues for the players.

  26. McCoy has been a 12 million dollar a year bust; He don’t even know how to tackle properly. But at least the Bucs are consistant in their draft pics, consistantly crappy.

  27. Maybe Raheem is starting to come out of the seam because his team isn’t the dream he thought it was.

    Tampa was supposed to put it all together this year and has taken a giant step back. Like the Panthers, the team is ok or better on offense, its the defense that is still lacking.

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