Outing Frustrates Galloway
While his teammates drove down the field for a touchdown late in the fourth quarter, veteran receiver Joey Galloway watched from the sideline with a towel over his head. Soon after the Bucs pulled within 10 points with that score, with 3:25 remaining, Galloway walked off the sideline and into the locker room, but not before expressing his disappointment to Jon Gruden.
"He's mad because he ... you've got to ask Joey," Gruden said. "I love that guy; he knows that. He's hurt and he wants to play. He's frustrated. You go all this time to get into a game like that and not really be able to perform, a lot of frustration, a lot of emotion."
As he left the locker room after the game, Galloway was asked if he wanted to talk about why he walked off the field early. "Nope," Galloway responded.
Galloway was one of the many players Gruden rested last week because of injuries. The 13-year veteran suffered a shoulder injury in the Dec. 23 loss to San Francisco.
Galloway finished with one catch for 9 yards Sunday. He had seven other passes thrown his way that he failed to catch, including an underthrown pass from Jeff Garcia that resulted in an interception in Tampa Bay's end zone midway through the third quarter. There also was some apparent miscommunication between Galloway and Garcia late in the third when Galloway cut outside while running a corner route and the pass was thrown down the middle for a post route.
"Joey Galloway was ineffective; he tried," Gruden said.
His teammates defended Galloway's decision to leave the game early. Fellow wide receiver Michael Clayton said the team knew how banged up Galloway was entering Sunday's game and appreciated his effort.
"Joey Galloway is a standup guy and I would say everybody on this team loves him and respects him," Clayton said. "I knew he left early because he was injured. Another week of rest probably would have helped him, but it's hard to keep him off the field. The guy is one of the most explosive players I've ever seen in my life. To do it at the age he's doing it at is amazing. More so, he's a leader."
Katherine Smith, The Tampa Tribune 7 January 2008