On Wednesday we learned that WR Joey Galloway was not going to be playing this Sunday against the Chicago Bears. We also learned that WR Antonio Bryant would take Galloway’s slot and that WR Michael Clayton would get his first start of the season by lining up opposite of Bryant:
"It's a big opportunity,'' Clayton said. "It's one that I've been waiting for. I've been told I will be starting [Sunday], so we'll see what happens. There's a lot of opportunity for any wide receiver who will be out there.' - Bucs Beat
Head Coach Jon Gruden may have squashed all of those good opportunities for WR Michael Clayton with the following comments:
"I understand a couple of players have already spoken that [Galloway is] not going [to play], but I’ll make that decision,’’ Gruden said. "And I’ll decide who starts, too. As long as I have the title as head coach here I’ll do that. The decisions we’ve made here, whether it be at the quarterback position or at flanker is going to be based on performance and we’ll leave it at that.’’ - Tampa Tribune
Ouch! If you’re Michael Clayton you gotta feel pretty small right about now and pissed off for that matter. I can see why Gruden took exception to Clayton as Mike over stepped his boundaries by telling the world he will start Sunday. If at all possible you would like to have the Chicago Bears wait until the last possible minute to know who to prepare for, but what does this back in forth in the media accomplish? Number one it makes you look like an ass (Not that Gruden cares). Number two it’s pretty childish. Wouldn’t it have been more beneficial to just sit Clayton and start someone else in his place? Why publicly embarrass your player? It’s not going to make him play any harder for you, I can tell you that…
This entire week has just been odd from the rash of injuries, roster moves, and public spats. Sunday can't get here quick enough.