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January 4, 2012 @ 4:19 pm
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What The Bucs Should Be Looking For In Their Next Head Coach

Written by Scott
Reynolds
Scott Reynolds

Scott
Reynolds

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Although the Buccaneers aren't disclosing what criteria the team is looking for in it's next head coach, PewterReport.com's Scott Reynolds lists some characteristics that Raheem Morris' replacement should have to lead the 2012 Tampa Bay team.

On Monday, January 2, Buccaneers co-chairman Joel Glazer took to the podium after firing head coach Raheem Morris, who went 17-31 in his three seasons as head coach in Tampa Bay from 2009-11, to explain the team’s decision to move in a different direction.

“We are going to keep an open mind. We are not going to pigeonholed in exactly what we are looking for here,” Glazer said when asked about what criteria ownership and general manager Mark Dominik were looking for in a new head coach. “We are going to interview a lot of different candidates and talk to a lot of different people. This is going to be an exhaustive search, but at the end of the day this is going to be the leader of our football team. The leader has to stand for something and every different person stands for different things and that’s when we have our final decision that will lead to what we were looking for.

“It is easy to say you want a leader with discipline and all these different things, but I am not going to characterize it one way or another. We want a person who we feel will represent this team well, represent the community well and get our players progressing like we would like to see them progress.”


While Glazer did not reveal what characteristics the team is looking for during the interview process, PewterReport.com will as the search for the ninth head coach in Tampa Bay history begins.

FIND SOMEONE WITH EXPERIENCE
After three years of on-the-job training with Morris, who was only 31 years old when he became the head coach, it’s time for the Buccaneers to find a coach with more experience. Although someone with head coaching experience would be preferred, there have been plenty of successful coordinators that have made the transition to becoming great head coaches.


Super Bowl winners Sean Payton and Mike McCarthy were once coordinators before becoming head coaches for the first time, and other Super Bowl winners like former Bucs head coaches Tony Dungy and Jon Gruden were former coordinators who won Super Bowls with their second teams as head coaches.

With Tampa Bay’s roster being the youngest in the NFL for the second straight year, the Bucs could use a head coach that has experience leading men through training camp, through the rigors of the regular season and even into the postseason. With the Bucs lacking quality veteran leadership at several key units, having a veteran that has been a head coach before or a long-time coordinator would be preferred over the next young, hot coordinator.

Candidates that the Buccaneers are reportedly interested in, such as Jeff Fisher, Mike Sherman, Jerry Gray and Mike Mularkey all fit this criteria, which is a good sign.

FIND A DISCIPLINARIAN
The worst kept secret at One Buccaneer Place was that the 35-year old Morris was more of a brother to his players than a head coach in the way he related to them. Morris was liked more than he was respected and even feared because of his friendly relationship with the players, especially the defensive backs like Ronde Barber, Tanard Jackson and Aqib Talib.

With the Buccaneers fielding such a young team, one that lacks discipline and seriousness, the next head coach should be one that is a disciplinarian, and demands professionalism from his players – regardless of their age. There is nothing more important to the 2012 Buccaneers than discipline, evidenced by the fact that Tampa Bay committed an egregious amount of penalties in 2011 – nearly an average of 10 per game.

Sherman and Fisher are proven disciplinarians that have a track record of suspending players when necessary and getting rid of players when warranted.

FIND SOMEONE TO CHALLENGE THE FRONT OFFICE
Egos clashed between Gruden and former general manager Rich McKay from2002-03 during the Buccaneers’ Super Bowl run and the aftermath, but there is no arguing the fact that the two signed the greatest collection of offensive talent that was necessary to provide the necessary balance to beat Philadelphia and win Super Bowl XXXVII. Players like wide receivers Keenan McCardell and Joe Jurevicius, tight ends Ken Dilger and Rickey Dudley, offensive linemen Roman Oben and Kerry Jenkins and running back Michael Pittman were all instrumental in Tampa Bay becoming world champions.

The relationship between former general manager Bruce Allen and Gruden was probably a bit too cozy as Gruden, who is not the best evaluator of talent, often got exactly what he wanted. McKay proved to be a better balance to Gruden than Allen did in terms of personnel acquisitions.

Dominik and director of player personnel Dennis Hickey are mostly responsible for the Bucs’ current roster as Morris didn’t have enough clout to make roster demands. Sometimes Dominik becomes too attached to his projects, such as running back Kregg Lumpkin and safety Sean Jones, when a player like Lumpkin is not an NFL-caliber and a player like Jones is not a starting-caliber player.

The Bucs need a working relationship between Dominik and the next head coach. It shouldn’t be acrimonious, but it shouldn’t be cozy, either. Proven NFL head coaches like Fisher and Sherman would probably strike the best balance.

FIND A DEFENSIVE-MINDED HEAD COACH
While Martin Fennelly of the Tampa Tribune has been lobbying the Buccaneers to hire an offensive-minded head coach, Pewter Report suggests the exact opposite take place – even though the recently fired Morris was a defensive-minded coach. Here’s the problem with hiring an offensive-minded head coach that will want to call plays. If it doesn’t work for any reason – the play-calling is not imaginative or effective enough, the chemistry with quarterback Josh Freeman isn’t right, or Freeman doesn’t show enough progress – it’s much easier and less painful to switch coordinators than it is to fire another head coach.

Dungy couldn’t get his offensive coordinators right – he went through three of them with Mike Shula, Les Steckel and Clyde Christensen – but the Bucs were better off sticking with Dungy from 1996-2001 as Tampa Bay built a Super Bowl-caliber defense under his watch. The Bucs had to put up with some mediocre play-calling at times from Jon Gruden because he was the head coach and the play-caller, and thankfully the defense was still stout for most of the Gruden era to help keep opposing point totals low.

Fennelly makes the case that offense rules the day in the modern NFL, but remember the supposedly invincible New England Patriots were 18-0 heading into the Super Bowl in 2007 before the New York Giants sacked the heck out of Tom Brady and stifled one of the most prolific offenses when it mattered the most.

The Buccaneers don’t have the experience or the firepower on offense to win shootouts with dynamic, high-flying offenses like Atlanta, New Orleans or Carolina right now. The recipe to beat those teams is to play stellar defense as the Bucs did earlier this season in triumphs over the Falcons and Saints.

Freeman had some good games for Tampa Bay in 2011, such as his 27-of-37 (73 percent) outing for 281 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions, but the Bucs still came up short because of shoddy tackling, poor technique and inexperience on defense. Tampa Bay’s defense ranked 30th overall by giving up 394.4 yards per game and couldn’t stop the run, allowing 156.1 yards per game, which ranked dead last in the NFL. Tampa Bay was also last in points allowed, surrendering 30.9 points per game.

Until Freeman takes a big step and joins the ranks of Drew Brees, Matt Ryan and Aaron Rodgers, whose play at the quarterback position can make up for the lack of a superior defense, the Bucs defense needs to improve. Freeman needs to be fixed, but Tampa Bay's defense needs to be fixed more.

Finding a head coach that has some experience running a 4-3 defense would be preferred given all of the high draft picks and millions of dollars the Bucs have invested in the likes of defensive linemen like Gerald McCoy, Brian Price, Adrian Clayborn and Da’Quan Bowers. The defensive-minded Fisher seems to be the best choice out of the publicized candidates the Bucs are interviewing to meet this criteria.

FIND A GOOD, HONEST COMMUNICATOR
What made Dungy should an effective coach and allowed the Buccaneers to turn around their fortunes? He was honest with his players and treated them like men. Sam Wyche was inconsistent and wasn’t always a truth-teller. Just ask any player who played for both Wyche and Dungy.

Morris was a good communicator and was pretty forthright and honest about his players, even calling some of them out in team meetings to help create accountability. With this as the standard, the Bucs players wouldn't appreciate a double-talker, as Gruden was at times, or a coach who was inconsistent with his message, as Wyche often was.

Sherman and Fisher are believed to be good communicators with players on their past teams, and would seem to have this characteristic.

If the Buccaneers can meet this list of criteria with the likes of Sherman, Fisher or someone else, then Tampa Bay should be able to find a more successful replacement for Morris.








Last modified on Wednesday, 04 January 2012 21:46
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COMMENTS

  • avatar

    The man you seek is Marty Schottenheimer. He fits all the criteria, and is very good with young quarterbacks, as Kosar, Brees and Rivers can attest to.
  • avatar

    I have been a buc fan since the Beginning.I seen the winless season, the quick rise to the lows of the 80's and early 90's, to our hay days of the mid to late 90's our Sb win and back to our current situation. What i see is a total mess and the ones who should take ALL the blame is the owners.I see the situation is worse than it was 3 years ago and they are gonna be hard pressed to get a quality Coach to Come to Tb. I dont believe Fisher will come here he is linked to ST louis Gm which i believe he will go there. Sherman im not a big fan of due to when brett started fading in green bay so did Shermans Job as HC. Do we have and upside here oh yes we do we have the talent on both sides of the ball.The Bucs need a HC to challenge the Gm and have total control of the Team.They need to hire a Dc like Monte That had Control over the defense My choice for HC would be Brian Billick An Offensive Minded Coach with the Discipline to Boot I like Bill Cowher But i dont see any way we can get him out of Cbs he looks too comfortable and he likes it as far as Herm Edwards all i remember of him is running around the field at pregame Hugging his Players (ala Raheem )being buddy buddy.All i know is the Glazers need to focus on the Bucs or sell the team to someone who cares about the bucs and only the bucs not some Soccer team in England
  • avatar

    Buc fan since inception! Personally, I don't see, nor would I think the players see, Sherman as a winner. I'm thinking he is much like Shanahan; very fotrunate to have a great QB!! Therefore, I can't possibly see him as a good choice. TB has ALWAYS had offense problems, typically based on playing average NFL QBs. Let's get either an offensive minded Head Coach or a very good OC. Defensively, we have spent MANY drafts on defensive players, so either the DC is not good or we aren't matching players with the schema. I have a thought, but I don't know as much as many of you, how about bringing Derrick Brooks in for DC or at least a defensive coaching position? My choice for head coach go get Cowher! Entice him to come take a challenge.
  • avatar


    Show me a coach that wants this job and I'll show you a desperate masochist.
  • avatar


    Hey why don't you interview Joe Pa and Bobby Bowden? Or maybe Hulk Hogan? What a mess, there aren't many good choices and the good choices won't want to come here, unless they have a teenage daughter that wants a suntan.
  • avatar


    Hey I'm Joel G"Loser" and my criteria for a head coach is that he comes on the cheap, his staff comes on the cheap and that he is ok that we won't spend crap on free agents. Sell the team, you miserly bozo's!
  • avatar

    The Glazers need to go to San Diego and bring back Rich Bisaccia, but not as the special teams coach as the HEAD COACH. And if people think a special team coach can't be a head coach look at the Baltimore Ravens head coach. And his first step as head coach is throw some money at Steve Spagnuolo as the Defensive Coordinator. The Giants are still reaping the benefits to what he put in place a couple years ago. Bisaccia is a no nonsense coach and if he was still here this year I bet there would not have been a 10 game losing streak. I would love to see this team move in this direction. Bisaccia deserves a spot and he has ties to this organization and understands what it takes to be a winner. GO BUCS
  • avatar


    no no and no you have a chance to hire a real head coach, a real gm and to sign some players ......nothing else is acceptable period!! If not sell the team!!! do you think they have a dom and rah running the soccer team ? NO !! WAKE UP PEOPLE!!! no no and no nor would they hire anyone close in comparable stature WAKE UP!
  • avatar

    The first thing the Glazers need to do is, sell the team to Mark Cuban (lol, seriously) or to someone that will spend money. Thereafter everything will work its self out.
  • avatar


    Sherman and Gray were reported on local news to have been interviewed today.
  • avatar

    I say Sherman should be our man.
  • avatar

    Good approach PR. One thing I would like to footnote to your article is a coach who can teach and reinforce fundamentals. We may have grown tired of Dungy saying it but it worked and we were consistent during his tenure because of it.
  • avatar


    skanji65, very good point.
  • avatar


    Great Article Lets not forget Dungys record with indy starting off , he was a game or three from getting fired before the colts management made him get all hands off the offense difference was they had a good coordinator who begun letting Manning get involved, this is when Manning started to play better and Dungy received accolades Thank Goodness someone took control of the offense or Peyton may not have had the career he did and Dungys record would not have been good when he was fired. His legacy would not be what it is! Thank Goodness For the good ole O.C. who made Peyton and Tony what they are today( football wise) or at least allowed them to reach their potential.Rich Mckay was great at signing and resigning talent especially early before contracts were up but he wasnt very good at managing Dungy or picking O.C's. Steckel was his loan attempt to guide Dungy but that was half hearted at best. How would Dungy and Peyton have faired with the three o.c.'s the bucs had under dungy. i will answer that, look at the first year and a half in indy. Pointe is a GM and Ownership Group has to have chemistry and football IQ along with the Coaches its aTeam top to bottom. Gruden made up for Mckays and Dungys shortfalls but soon Grudens shotfalls came to light and there was no body to even those out certainly nor Bruce Allen and Certainly not the Glazers. Dom is a weak link and must go this hole feasco was under his nose This is a joke Jeff Fisher isnt coming here with Dom nor is Cowher , maybe Kelly is your only shot but the Glazers clearly are not doing the best thing here and they know it.Unfortunately most fans don't!!
  • avatar


    Come on i want to hear something.Did we interview someone ?why or why not?When is the next interview and with who?Give me something here very interested in whats going on .Right now we should have 3 or 4 articles a day.I want the info .
  • avatar


    Bring in Rob Ryan to meet most criteria!
  • avatar

    Oh god please no...it's not like he looks a little like his brother, I hate Rex Ryan's face, I couldn't take it.
  • avatar


    not on the coaching subject, but i think the first pick has to be blackmon if he is still there. a deep threat wideout plays and acts more like calvin johnson than a diva, would open the field for all the less athletic offense of players that we have now and like someone mentioned the best defense is a good time consuming offense. i really beginning to think marty shot or billick for coach.sherman is worse than rah. even edwards would be better than sherman.edwards,marty, or billick hc, del rio dc,oc clements or philibin from gb spelling on some names maybe wrong, but that staff could do some dammage
  • avatar

    Sherman had Brett Farve....No Farve and Sherman wouldn't have lasted the 3 years that Morris did, not to mention the fact that he just showed that he can't even adequately coach a college team hence his firing from Texas A&M...Jeff Fisher has a 16 year record of 146-127 I believe and and hardly any play-off wins...I can't believe that Fisher and Sherman are Pewter Reports top 2 choices....very disappointing Mr. Scott Reynolds...You get paid to research and write and these 2 regurgitated coaches are the best you can come up with?? Offerings such as these will not convince me to re-new my subscription later this year Scott.
  • avatar

    Who would you put on your list? Just curious...not combative.
  • avatar

    Here's what I say... Whoever we hire as head coach needs to talk the Glazers into paying whatever money we need to to raid the Green Bay offensive coaches. I don't care if it's a QB coach or the Offensive Coordinator. They are doing something extremely right there and it needs to be brought (bought) to Tampa. With that said...I still think Fisher will be the best bet for us if we can get him. I forget where I read it (ESPN or PewterReport), but someone said it best that although Fisher has only one Super Bowl appearance and his playoff appearances aren't as "impressive" as some would like during his tenure, the guy has always fielded a team that has an identity. He's also fielded a team that played well on the road and even in losing efforts, his teams were a pain in the butt to play against. During Fisher's tenure, it was never easy to play the Titans. I also really like the Mike Sherman interview. But for the life of me I can't say why. Gut feeling? Or maybe I'm taking the bait the media is putting out there? Might be this guy could get us going as well. He was pretty impressive with Green Bay's squad.
  • avatar

    Sherman would be a great hire. He took an 8-8 Ray Rhodes team in GB and in six seasons won four division titles (when the NFC North was tough) and only had on bad season when injuries killed them. At A@M he built the team from nothing and now they are relevant. I don't know how they lost those leads but they we not against bad teams they were against top ten teams. I do understand anytime you lose to Texas you could get let go. He is a class act which is evident by how he left A&M. A good hire.
  • avatar

    Agree. I just get a good feeling about the guy. Still think Fisher would be a little better, but I wouldn't be upset with Sherman. He just seems like an all around solid coach. But I'll say again...we need to raid GB's offensive coaches. Figure out a way to get some of those guys over here to fix Freeman and this offense. We need to learn how to strike early and often...which is how GB and Aaron Rodgers do it when they just completely BURY teams. Even a slightly solid defense mixed with that type of offense could get us to the post season.
  • avatar


    Some peolple didn't like the way joel glazer was smiling when he was talking i think it was more of a nervous situation for him.I liked the press conferences as a fan they said what you would want to hear and thats more important.The Glazers are willing to spend and get someone who works well with everybody so they can fix this thing and thats what needs to happen.Jeff fisher coached along time for the same team thats unheard of now at days.That says something right there.If we can't get him then Brian Billick ,Bill Cowher,Herm Edwards . I do think Edwards would be a good choice he as coached here so he knows the system plus he has the right attitude for this young team.We need a veteran guy with this team but i do love that the Glazers are embarrassed about what happened this year and said they will do what it takes to get this corrected.That shows me they just don't want to make a dollar but want to win .The Glazers are rich enough. To me you don't buy a sports team just to make money you should care about it and want to win and with wins will come money.I wish i had the money to buy a team and if i did i would do just what the glazers are doing and saying they want a winner and so do we.GO BUCS!!!
  • avatar

    Eww, all I saw when I saw that dude smiling was his dumb *censored* dad holding the Lombardi Trophy up thinking about his next 100 million dollars that he was going to spend on ManU, good people in the Tampa Bay area, lots of support and very commendable, but terrible NFL owners.
  • avatar

    I would prefer an offensive guy only because then there will be no excuse if Freeman fails. You say that it will be easier to switch play calling duties or hire another offensive coordinator if we have a defensive minded coach. Sorry, but if Freeman doesn't get it done this time it's on him. Enough excuses. And if we are looking for an offensive guy we will only get one that believes in Freeman. Fisher has 2 reasons to not come here... one, the ownership, and 2 he would much rather have Bradford as his QB over Freeman. Everything else I agree with you on. We need someone to challenge the front office, demands respect, and is open and honest. No more coddling our 4th year franchise QB.
  • avatar

    I couldn't agree more with the comments made about Dominik and the need for a HC with the ability to challenge him. Dominik has yet to prove himself as a GM in my mind. He's made questionable decisions with player acqisitions/signings and he and Hickey's ability to evaluate talent is questionable as well. Hickey's eye for talent was in question before Dominik took over. I would add one more very important trait to the list. The ability to succesfuly evaluate talent. It's important to have your co-workers challenge you, it makes you perform your job better. I'm not saying the HC and GM have to disagree on everything, that would be unproductive. They just have to put their egos aside now and then. That's a tall order in the NFL.
  • avatar


    My first choice would be Rod Marinelli. While he must bear some responsibility for an 0-16 season in Detroit, It's the main reason I'd want him here now. He knows what happens when you lose and the pitfalls to avoid this time around. What happened to him is part and parcel of what happened to Morris here - a GM who didn't know what he was doing in Matt Millen. Dominik will be a better GM this time around too. Experience teaches, even bad experience teaches! Marinelli is regarded as one of the best defensive minds in the league and has proven it here in Tampa. Put him together with a Tom Clements (Green Bay) at OC and Karl Dunbar (Vikings, Top 10 D-line, 22 sack DE) we're starting on the road to recovery! When someone scores 42 points on you before the 2qtr you better be thinking defense! If we send Faine off to run his clothing business, move Zuttah and Larsen to C, pry enough money out of the Glazer's hands to get Carl Nicks in FA or Dominik draft big nasty Kelechi Osemele LG, 6-6, 347 in the 2nd round, the O-Line will look like new money! We can replace Penn and Trueblood in 2013. Oh, I forgot to mention, the money to hire Marinelli and the OC and DC will fit the Glazre's budget too. Fugitaboutit! Fisher and Cowher was never a real thought at One Buc!!
  • avatar


    macabee, that's a pretty good team you are suggesting.
  • avatar


    Marinelli is my choice as well....I doubt it will happen though....
  • avatar


    Horse you can't hire a guy ( Edwards) then say it's only till we find someone better. There's a reason Edwards isn't coaching right now, he failed at his chance, and probably likes being a good talker on ESPN. Fisher is the only retread coach I'd hire.because I believe he could get the best assistant coaches to come here. Other wise I'd go best available O.C., Mularkey, or someone no ones mentioned, Marc Tresman.
  • avatar


    surferdudes... Kevin O'Donnell FOX 13 interviewed Coach Edwards in Orlando yesturday. You are correct. He has not been contacted. He will not stop at 1 Buc and said he is happy where he is now. Said his name always comes up with openings in the NFL and college, has been contacted by some but again stressed he is happy where he is. He also said the Bucs will find the right coach but must find one who will bring discipline.
  • avatar


    surferdudes, if you think that this team can be straightened out with just whoever they hire; I would like to see it happen though. If the Bucs called Edwards to come in for an interview you can bet he would. Okay lets say it won't be somebody like Edwards, no matter what it has to be someone with strong discipline skills because most of these players don't even know what hard work is if they were brought in as rookies or one year players.
  • avatar


    Good Article Scott. I believe you have presented a strong case as to the reasons why we should go with an experienced past Head Coach. If we can't get Sherman or Fisher, then I am for hiring Herm Edwards for three yeas with the understanding from him that he might only be the Head Coach until "our guy, whoever that will be becomes available", but will still be with the organization and take the old Doug Williams position. It's going to take a year just to shake out the ones that can't take some discipline and/or not good enough to play on this team. In this draft I would pick "best availalbe player" unless it is a QB or DE. I hope that Dominik is sending an email to all the players suggesting that they stay in Tampa Bay Area to train and rehab under the new coaching staff.
  • avatar


    Rod Marinelli. Everything talked about needing in this article he has. Detriot's success is based on players he coached and brought in. Young teams take a while to mature. PLUS....he can run the Tampa defense. Defense still is the great equalizer and wins championships more often. As for disipline.....nobody will be slacking off if he is running the show!!! Plenty of offensive coordinators out there and he can bring in a defensive coordinator. He would know that side of the ball and who to chose.
  • avatar


    A lot of posters are mentioning Mike Zimmer, check out inside the NFL this week on Showtime. You'll see Ray Rice run around, though, and over the Bengal's D. One T.D. run is the game winner, where he runs untouched to the end zone. Looked a lot like we've seen over the past 10 weeks from the Bucs D. The Bengals are better this year thanks to Jay Gruden getting the most out of a rookie Q.B.,and wide receiver. Again, the best defense, is a good offense.
  • avatar


    Scott you don't make sense. You mention Peyton,and McCarthy as O.C.'s who are now H.C.'s,call their own plays, and have won superbowls, but we should find a defensive coach? Like Edwards,Spagnola, Del Rio, Sprano, Mangenius,all defensive coordinators,all failed miserably. You can't hire away the best O.C.'s, that's why you have to hire them as head coaches. I think the better idea is hire a guy like Mularkey, who did a great job with Matt Ryan, knows the NFC south, and has a proven offensive track record, and pair him with Del Rio, or Spagnola. Scott Fennelly has you on this one. As far as our offense not being explosive, we can cure that by drafting Blackmon, Richardson, or free agentcy. Scott number 5 needs weapons, and an offensive minded coach, not a Herm Edwards.
  • avatar

    We do need what you state, but replacing Morris should be easy.
  • avatar


    Hopefully who ever ends up coach will end this buddy system BS ~these young millionaires need to do their jobs and having a friend in charge isnt maximizing their efforts..If I performed as poorly as most of our team has,my *censored* would be unemployed~if we little folks are made to EARN our cash ~ so should a bunch of pro football players ~regardless of age or experience..If you cant step up on the field,lets ho[e you step off and get the hell off the roster...Wafflehouse can always use another cook..
  • avatar


    More and more i'm thinking that Mike Zimmer would be the best guy. Apparently his players loved him AND respected the heck out of him. He's done wonders in Cincinatti where that owner doesn't like to spend money either. Great fit if you ask me.
  • avatar


    GBP Philbin is interviewing fer HC jobs ~so far in KC~we should take a look at this guy..
  • avatar


    Scubog, Can't argue with a word you've said, except that you conditioned your recommendations on " in the long run". In today's NFL, there is no such thing. You have got to win now or you're out regardless of your virtues or wholesome approach to the game. If you can convince season ticket holders and a restless media that your approach is going to take time and they buy it, you might have a chance, otherwise you're unemployed!
  • avatar

    also too.......
  • avatar


    Scott, I liked the approach of this article to focus more on the desired qualities of our new head coach rather than name recognition or lack thereof. It's comical how some posters profess to know something about these candidates; but other than a few, probably couldn't pick them out of a two-person lineup. Due diligence is much more than our limited knowledge. To me, that's like forgoing the background check, references and impressions taken from a four-hour interview and making the choice on how they said hello or their choice of necktie. A candidate possessing the criteria you listed is what will prove successful in the long run. Funny how teams switch from one style to the other. If this were an aging veteran laden team it might need a certain type of HC who could try to squeeze a little more out of the roster like Gruden did. But our youthful, inexperienced, undisciplined, rudderless, impressionable, beat-down, hip-hop and I still think talented team, needs someone in whom the players believe without question and to instill confidence and ultimately resurrect the swagger of a once proud defense. Catchy phrases like "Smart, Fast, Hard and Consistent",and even my favorite, "Pound the Rock" soon fade because in the end, it's the teaching and coaching of details that matter.
  • avatar

    I winced when I read the part about Carolina having a high-flying offense. It's true--the Bucs' ship has sunken to the bottom.
  • avatar


    Great article thanks SR! I'm most concerned about Dominick running unchecked and you're right on point with his propensity to latch onto projects even when it's not working. Hopefully the glazers are aware of that flaw and will make sure there is a balance of power. Someone pointed out that Doug Williams was let go due to Dominick wanting total control over personell and if that mindset persists I don't see us turning the organization around in the near future. No one person is right all of the time. I can imagine a scenario where dom continues to call the shots for another year or two, things not working out, then scratching the whole plan and starting over again with a whole new gm/regime. Let's hope dom can avoid that by acknowledging his flaws and hiring a strong head coach and giving him half of the control, although by the way he hid from the media over the losing streak and left Raheem out to dry, I'm extremely concerned going forward.
  • avatar


    Dom will have nothing to do with hiring the head coach and depending on the coach that gets hired, his job could be in jeapordy as well.
  • avatar


    I liked Raheem as a person, but when he could no longer inspire his team to give their best, he had to go. He is at fault partially for trying to be best buddies with his team, but I agree the major fault is the Glazers who were way too mizerly with their purse strings. If they keep their word about paying for Veteran players and a good coach, fine, but I will believe it when I see it. My preference would be for them to sell the team to a new owner with a deep pocket and good sense, and the ability to convince Dungy to come back and take the Bucs all the way to the Super Bowl. That is the ideal coach for the Bucs and since his home is in Tampa, he would have an incentive to take the Bucs from the bottom to the top, and you know he would not have any trouble now attracting top coordinators either. Look at how many of his former coordinators have gone on to be NFL coaches themselves. Dominick is incredible in finding good players in the draft and I am glad he is retained. One benefit of the bungles of the Bucs this year is they will get high draft opportunities, which should be a draw to prospective coaches. The Bucs can come back!
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    i like zimmerman (bengals DC) as a person and a coach, he should top our list once the bengals are eliminated. fisher is guaranteed to represent a franchise with class and dignity, but all the class and dignity in the world couldn't save Dungy's job when the team stalled. i'm not sure what to make of a coach that had as many or more pro bowl caliber players as the bucs during the late 90s and more than us since the mid-2000s, and yet only made the playoffs one third of the time. that sort of record won't bring fans back to the stadium for long, and it doesn't clear the bar that got the last few bucs coaches fired...by the end of fisher's tenure, a good season in tennessee (with the exception of that 14-2 monster year a few years back) seemed to be a lousy start with a flurry of wins to get to around .500
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    i can respect the lack of division titles on account of one Peyton Manning, but in his last 7 years coaching the titans, fisher was only better than .500 twice....in other words, since the bucs' superbowl win, he's been roughly as successful as the head coaches who have driven the bucs fan base to apathy. i vote a firm no to the overrated jeff fisher. how much can you improve after 15+ years as a coach?
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    SR - Very surprised at the anti-Gruden tone of this article; while I understand that several very vocal players soured on him by the end, they had their best seasons with him and have subsequently flamed out of the league dramatically. Have more turned on him leaguewide than you have let on? Previously you mentioned that he was Tampa's most active, vocal and successful recruiter in free agency. Is that now not the case? I was especially surprised by the charge that he got what he wanted from Allen. My understanding from the agents I know is that Gruden only fell in love with players on whom he had NFL film or film of them playing against NFL-caliber competition. He didn't want to waste his time on players who he couldn't see reacting to the speed or complications of the pro game. That led to some errors (notice how his tune has changed on Darren Sproles now that he's seen pro film) but it also allowed him to get more out of players like Jurevicius, Roman Oben, Galloway and John Gilmore than their previous coaches had. So my understanding was that he was far less engaged in the draft, only going to bat for players that he knew could perform at the level he wanted like Caddy, Calvin Johnson and Bryan Westbrook. The rest of the time, Allen either said no to his free agent demands or simply drafted players he thought would fit the system. I may be wrong, and I only know one or two top-level people in the league as opposed to the hundreds you do, but are you saying that he was as fervent about the likes of Lance Nimmo as he was the likes of Antonio Bryant? By the way, no to Fisher. Let St. Louis have him. No salary cap constraints and he managed as many division titles in sixteen years as Gruden did in three? Good luck, Rams. I like Mike Zimmer, but he won't put fans in the seats. That's why I think Sherman would be good, even though he's not necessarily the best coach available. And please no to Mike Mularkey. When has anyone ever looked at his offenses in Buffalo, Pittsburgh or Atlanta and said, "Damn, now THAT guy is getting the most out of his personnel!"
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    Stop blaming Raheem the blame starts from up top. The glazers dont pay any money although they say they are willing to spend. Why didnt John Lynch, Sapp, Warrick Dunn (to name a few), finish off their careers in TB? Dominick didnt bring in any new talent besides rookies to help us improve and its Raheems fault? this is a joke Tampa Bay needs to find a coach who wont let the Gayzers and Dominick run the show and use him as a puppet
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    Though I've been a Buc fan from the beginning, the Titans became a close second when they moved to Tennessee during my Nashville days. Jeff Fisher is a class act all the way. He's great with the intangibles, an absolute leader (how he handled the death of McNair helped heal the team and the community), and--now--rested and likely humbled. The Bucs and Tampa would be an ideal match for him. As for Mike Sherman, I'll leave that one to Warren Sapp.
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    I have to agree. I think another good candidate that's been mentioned is Zimmer from the Bengals. I think he's built a good defense with some young contributors, and they have some decent offenses in their devision. But I'd love to see us get Fisher and he could attract top tier coordinators too. Either way, it's gonna be interesting. GO BUCS!
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