The most exciting moment of Monday’s plodding Dolphins-Buccaneers matchup was almost scrapped in the huddle.
Left tackle Donald Penn scored the Bucs’ first touchdown of the night on a tackle-eligible trick pass — the second time in his career he’s scored on such a play. But immediately before the score, while running back Mike James was down on the field with an injury, Penn’s first touchdown — scored against the 49ers in 2010 — was shown on the Jumbotron at Raymond James Stadium as part of a video recognizing the lineman’s 100th consecutive start.
Tampa Bay head coach Greg Schiano said later that he and his staff debated whether to go through with the play call, fearful that the Dolphins defense might be prepared after seeing video of the exact same play seconds earlier.
“We’d already called the play when Mike goes down,’’ Schiano said Tuesday, according to The Tampa Tribune. “During that stoppage, I knew we were going to recognize Donald because his 100th [consecutive] start came on the road. I was great with that, but then [quarterbacks coach] John McNulty says, ‘They’re playing it on the board.’
“The conversation on the headset, you wouldn’t believe it. You can’t make this stuff up. But cooler minds prevailed. One of our coaches said we can’t let the Jumbotron make our decisions.”
Ultimately, Schiano stuck to his guns, and it worked out for the best. Penn scored on the play, the Bucs went on to pick up their first win of the season and the world got to witness the glory of a fat guy touchdown dunk.
Relive it in the GIF below, courtesy of Eye on Football.