After a few uneasy hours earlier on Wednesday afternoon, the Bucs finally got their man to lead a hopeful resurgence of the Tamp Bay defense.

The Bucs made the hire or former Jets coach Todd Bowles official on Wednesday evening.

The Chicago Bears made a late play to add Bowles as their defensive coordinator after losing Vic Fangio to the Broncos who hired him to become Denver’s head coach.


Bowles served under Arians as the Cardinals defensive coordinator in Arizona for two years (2013-14) before leaving to become the head coach of the New York Jets in 2015. Bowles was just fired by New York after going 25-35 in three seasons with the Jets.

From the Buccaneers Communications Department:

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced today that Todd Bowles has been named the team’s defensive coordinator.

Bowles joins the Buccaneers after spending the past four seasons as the head coach of the New York Jets (2015-18). Under Bowles, the Jets posted one of the best run defenses in the NFL, holding teams to just 4.00 yards per carry, the sixth-lowest figure in the NFL during that span, and allowing only 44 rushing touchdowns, tied for the eighth-least in that timeframe. Bowles’ Jets defense also allowed opposing offenses to convert only 36.0 percent of third downs, the fourth-lowest mark in the league. Opposing passers completed just 60.6 percent of their passes against the Jets under Bowles, the third-lowest mark in the NFL.

Four different defensive players earned Pro Bowl berths under Bowles in New York, with cornerback Darrelle Revis and defensive lineman Muhammad Wilkerson being selected in 2015, defensive lineman Leonard Williams being nominated in 2016 and safety Jamal Adams voted to the game in 2018. This past season also saw Jets return specialist Andre Roberts earn Pro Bowl distinction, along with being named first-team AP All-Pro as a kick returner.

Prior to serving as the head coach of the Jets, Bowles spent two seasons as the defensive coordinator of the Arizona Cardinals (2013-14), including winning Assistant Coach of the Year honors from the Pro Football Writers of America and the Associated Press in 2014. During Bowles’ time in Arizona, the Cardinals’ defense allowed the third-fewest rushing touchdowns (14), the fifth-fewest points per game (19.5) and the fifth-fewest rushing yards per game (96.6). Bowles’ defenses in Arizona also showed a knack for taking the ball away, recording the fifth-most interceptions in the NFL (38) and the most defensive touchdowns in the league, with nine.

While Bowles led the Cardinals’ defense, he saw cornerback Patrick Peterson earn first-team AP All-Pro honors in 2013 and earn Pro Bowl honors both years (2013-14). Defensive end John Abraham (2013), cornerback Antonio Cromartie (2014) and defensive end Calais Campbell (2014) each also earned Pro Bowl selections.

Bowles spent one year with the Philadelphia Eagles (2012), serving as the team’s secondary coach before being named interim defensive coordinator for the final 10 games of the season. Philadelphia finished ninth in passing yards allowed (216.9 per game) that season.

Before joining the Eagles, Bowles worked as the assistant head coach/secondary coach for the Miami Dolphins for four seasons (2008-11). In the 2011 season, he was named interim head coach for the final three games of the year, going 2-1. Under Bowles’ tutelage, Miami’s secondary held opposing quarterbacks to a 58.1 completion percentage over that span, the seventh-lowest mark in the NFL.

Prior to his time in Miami, Bowles worked as the defensive backs coach for the Dallas Cowboys (2005-07), coaching three different players to the Pro Bowl (safety Ken Hamlin, cornerback Terence Newman and safety Roy Williams).

His NFL coaching career began in 2000 as the defensive backs coach of the New York Jets, coaching a unit that allowed just 18.3 passing yards per game, the sixth-lowest in the NFL. Following his season in New York, Bowles spent four years with the Cleveland Browns, working as the team’s defensive nickel package coach (2001-03) and secondary coach (2004). In 2001, the team set a franchise record with 33 interceptions and in 2004, the Browns allowed the fifth-fewest passing yards in the NFL (181.3 per game).

Before coaching in the NFL, Bowles spent one season as the defensive coordinator at Morehouse College (1997) and two seasons as the defensive coordinator at Grambling State (1998-99).

Bowles played collegiately at Temple and, despite going undrafted in the 1986 NFL Draft, played eight years in the NFL, with the Washington Redskins (1986-90; 1992-93) and the San Francisco 49ers (1991). He was a starter on the 1987 Redskins team that won Super Bowl XXII. Following his retirement as a player, Bowles spent two seasons (1995-96) with the Green Bay Packers player personnel department.

A native of New Jersey, Bowles and his wife, Taneka, have three sons, Todd Jr., Troy and Tyson.

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Mark Cook currently is the director of editorial content and Bucs beat writer and has written for PewterReport.com since 2011. Cook has followed the Buccaneers since 1977 when he first began watching football with his Dad and is fond of the 1979 Bucs team that came within 10 points of going to a Super Bowl. His favorite Bucs game is still the 1979 divisional playoff win 24-17 over the Eagles. In his spare time Cook enjoys playing guitar, fishing, surfing and family time at the beach. In addition, Cook can be found in front of a television or in Doak Campbell any time the FSU Seminoles are playing. Cook is a native of Pinecrest in Eastern Hillsborough County and has written for numerous publications including the Tampa Tribune, In the Field and Ya'll Magazine. Cook can be reached at [email protected]

15 COMMENTS

  1. Our coaching staff is frigging stacked. I question the fandom of anyone who isnt excited

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  2. I am really starting to get excited. I just hope there are still a few seats left in the nosebleeds. I think we turn it around in 2019. Can’t wait for the Draft.

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  3. we had a previously fired head coach as our defensive coordinator last few years and….

    jk! fuck yeah I’m pumped!

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  4. Not only is this coaching staff stacked but they have experience across the board too.

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  5. Awesome! Cant have a great D till we have a Great DC. We got one now! Welcome Coach Bowles! Welcome to Sunny Florida and the Bucs! GO BUCS!!!

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  6. I hate to admit it, but I really don’t know much about this guy other than he was head coach of the Jets. Does anybody know what kind of system he runs?

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    • 4-3/3-4 Bowles will change it up depending on roster and down and distance. Very creative.

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  7. Another great pickup. I hope Duffner gets a shot at D coordinator somewhere. He clearly got better results than Smith with even worse roster due to injuries later in the year. Was hoping he could maybe stay on as LB coach but Bruce will have his guys of course.

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  8. Shuster Bowles has run both 3-4 and 4-3 but 3-4 more. He is aggressive and likes to bring pressure and make you guess where it’s coming from.

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  9. Well I hope P.R., or the media can ask some good questions today at the presser instead of how’s your health? What is Bowles going to run, are we moving to a 3-4? How does that jibe with the players we have? My opinion is V.Vea is a better fit at nose in a 3-4, then a three tech in a 4-3. Beau Allen can do the same, so that’s a start. Kwon coming off an ACL, and David, high priced, and getting old are question marks IMO moving forward. Beckwith can play in a 3-4, but how healthy is he, and can he stay that way. So where fans have thought L.B. has been a strength of ours, I see it as a weakness right now. The other L.B.’s on the roster are total garbage. I don’t see how we pay Kwon big money, with David’s salary who might not fit what we’re going to do. Look for big changes in the front seven if Bowles is moving us to a 3-4. He’d have a lot of money to make the change if David is traded, Kwon isn’t paid, McCoy, and JPP are traded, or released. JPP I could see sticking in any system although the Giants shipped him out when they moved to a 3-4. Ask these questions please, I see this as being where the most change in the roster could happen.

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    • None of those questions will be asked. The coaching staff will have to review tapes from last year, and see the players, before they can even discuss any of that. It will be the basic questions as of right now. After training camp you will probably hear those questions.

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    • I said last year LB had to be addressed in the draft. Kept banging for Roquan Smith if we stayed put. Also said come this time next year when Kwon is a FA, David hasn’t played like he once did and Beckwith battling injuries. New regime will wish they had Roquan Smith.Vea showed some promise at the end however this is a D linemen heavy draft.

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  10. My favorite quote from Bill Bellichek…”good players cant overcome bad coaching. Its impossible.” so true. So excited that we got a legit coaching staff.

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  11. Licht I have to say you did about as good as you could have done. Now time to address the roster, free agency and the draft. Cant make any more mistakes. You’ve made many. If you hit a home run in the offseason, this team could make the playoffs next year.

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  12. The @packers & @buccaneers
    rank 1-2 over past two seasons in games where both DEF & ST efficiencies were below average. 17 games for Bucs, 15 for Pack. GB 1st and TB 3rd in games where OFF efficiency was above avg but DEF & ST were below. Naturally, the focus is on fixing QBs! Just a little fun fact for those that think the quarterback is our main issue. Numbers don’t lie! Fix the horrid defense and offensive line. This team isn’t that far off. I may be drinking the cool aid but this seems like such a positive hire on multiple fronts.

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