New Bucs head coach Lovie Smith's squad is coming together quickly as reports say Smith has hired Jeff Tedford to lead the Bucs offense, and then late Friday evening ESPN reported that former Vikings head coach Leslie Frazier will be the Bucs defensive coordinator.
Sometimes the consolation prize is pretty good.
It appeared earlier this week that Dallas assistant coach and former Bucs defensive line coach Rod Marinelli would join Lovie Smith’s staff as the Buccaneers defensive coordinator, but late Friday night ESPN’s Josina Anderson reported that Leslie Frazier had accepted the job to head up the Bucs defense.
Frazier was the head coach of the Minnesota Vikings the previous three and a half seasons and compiled a 20-33-1 record and a playoff appearance after leading the Vikings to a 10-6 record in 2012.
Frazier and Smith have never coached directly with each other but come from the same Tony Dungy coaching tree. Frazier was an assistant with the Colts for two seasons before being named defensive coordinator of the Vikings in 2007. Frazier continued in that capacity before taking over for a fired Brad Childress midway through the 2010 season. After leading the Vikings to a 3-3 record to close the season Frazier was promoted to head coach.
Frazier won two Super Bowls, one as a player and one as a coach. Frazier was part of the 1986 Chicago Bears team that went 15-1 in the regular season and beat the Patriots in Super Bowl XX. Frazier played defensive back and led the Bears that season with six interceptions. His playing career was cut short after suffering a knee injury while returning a punt.
Some have speculated that Fraizer could help lure some of the Vikings potential free agents to Tampa Bay, including defensive end Jared Allen, who would fill a huge need for the Buccaneers as an edge pass rusher.
While no one inside the organization has even confirmed that Marinelli
was a target, multiple reports said that the Cowboys did not give the
Buccaneers permission to interview Marinelli for the job. Marinelli is
under contract through 2014, but it has widely been speculated that the
Cowboys have an eye on Marinelli replacing Monte Kiffin at some point.
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