After over four decades at the club, Schaaf's 14-year reign as coach came to an end this week after he left by mutual consent, and his exit has created some unease in the Bremen ranks ahead of their final Bundesliga game of the season against Nuremberg.
"It was really a shock for everybody to begin with," said defender Sebastian Prodl.
"The whole situation is not something that can sink in in just an hour. All I can say is that I am grateful to have been able to work under him for five years.
"He has brought me on and therefore has the utmost of respect from me."
Clemens Fritz has experienced half of Schaaf's 14 years in charge and, like many of his team-mates, is sorry to see him leave.
"We were all able to learn a lot from him," he said on his club's website.
"We would all like to thank him for this once again.
"The whole of Bremen can be grateful for the excellent work he has given to Bremen over 14 years."
Wolfgang Rolff will try to fill that void in Nuremberg.
Michael Wiesinger will be sat in the home team's dugout, and that should not be for the last time.
Having taken Nuremberg through the 40-point barrier, and to safety, he is set to be given a new contract for next season.
"I think we've done a really good job," he said modestly.