I certainly find myself getting in the money but not great a lot, and it's largely from tightening up too early, around the time where antes kick in and you find a lot of short stacks waiting for the moment to double up. They will do serious damage should you call their shoves and be wrong, and there's always the table big-stack just waiting to come over the top - the short stack doesn't care but it'll scare away middle stacks. So it's tempting but wrong to wait passively through a long run of average hands.
As for post-bubble, my last mtt seems typical: 4500-ish entries, 200 places paid. With about 250 survivors, most players apart from the leaders playing as passively as possible and some on my table deliberately using their entire time-bank each hand to slow things down in order to hold on. It took nearly an hour to go from 250 to 201 players. I was 197th with less than 1BB left when 201st was eliminated. The moment that happened it became a shovefest, and although I only won one hand after that point I finished 121st. That may be a reflection of the structure, relatively tiny increments in prizes right up to the final table, so clinging on from 200th ($6) to 180th ($6.50) isn't really worth it compared to taking a wild shot at glory.