Bucs defensive coordinator Mike Smith - Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR
Well, that didn’t go exactly as many thought it would.
Adam Schefter of ESPN reports that the Jaguars plan to give Jaguars interim coach Doug Marrone the title of head coach, making many Bucs fans breathe a sigh of relief.
Last week, former Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager, Mark Dominik, said the Jaguars were honing in on a defensive guy. Once that was announced, most thought the choice had to be obvious. When you combine Smith’s head coaching history – for a team that desperately needs someone in leadership who knows what they’re doing – with the fact that he elevated this Buccaneers defense to a whole new level in 2016, there simply weren’t any other candidates who could match what Smith was bringing to the table.
But, the Jaguars obviously had other plans.
The connection was an easy one to makes as now current Jaguars general manager Dave Caldwell worked as the director of college scouting and the director of player personnel in Atlanta while Mike Smith was the head coach. It was while Caldwell was there that the Falcons made it to the NFC Championship game, and it wasn’t until Caldwell left that Smith really had his falling off – Caldwell never seeing that or being around that himself could’ve held Smith candidacy’s here.
Instead, the Bucs hold on to Smith, for the time being, but they’re not out of the woods yet for keeping their defensive coordinator. Last week, Smith was the first candidate the San Diego Chargers interview for their head coaching vacancy.
The Chargers head coaching search appears to be much more extensive than Jacksonville’ however, as they also interviewed New England Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia and Chiefs special-teams coordinator Dave Toub over the weekend. ESPN has reported that San Diego also has requested to interview with Miami Dolphins defensive coordinator Vance Joseph and Detroit Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin.
It seems their focus is much more on the defensive side of the ball than the Jaguars was. But the silver lining for the Bucs fans is that the Chargers current roster is built for a 3-4 defense and Mike Smith expertise and preference lies in a 4-3.
For now, the Mike Smith saga continues.
Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: [email protected]
Trevor Sikkema has been a great add to the PR staff. Good stuff!
I still believe Smith needs another year here before he moves on. Don’t forget Smith was fired as HC with Atlanta and look how good they have done since then.
I really like the addition of Sikkema as well. Looking forward to reading more of his stuff this off season.
I think Mike Smith is a real good coach. So I am glad he’s still here.
Dodged the first “Hire Smitty” bullet. I’d really love for Smitty to come back next season. Like with any young team, continuance is so important from year to year. The players just started to gel and play up to the aggressive nature the defense calls for. Having the same DC would set us up to hit the ground running next season.
If Deshaun Watson is not the first pick of the Browns, they should just eliminate that franchise for incompetence.
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