The NFL is a brutal, results-driven business. Just ask the last three coaches of the Buccaneers, who combined for a dismal 36-76 record over seven years. Only Raheem Morris, producing the lone winning season in 2010, survived for a third try.
Naturally, Dirk Koetter knows the clock has been ticking since Thursday but he isn’t concerned with it.
“The clocks ticking everywhere on every coach in this league,” Koetter said. “I’m not paying attention to that, and that won’t be decided by me.”
Instead, he’s paying attention to what he can decide and trusting his experience will lead him in the right direction. This might be his first head-coaching gig in the NFL, but he’s going on his 10th season in the league and has seen three regime changes. There are no guarantees; a head coach can only do so much. Koetter has learned to concentrate on what he can control and doing what is right at that time.
“Let me tell you something, I’ve been fired and I’ve been hired and I really believe that you have to look at the man in the mirror,” he said. “That man in the mirror knows if he did what he was supposed to do or not. I promise you that when I look in the mirror, I’m going to do everything I can to make that guy say, ‘I did everything I was supposed to do.’”
Koetter is confident he can live up to the challenge and is optimistic for a quick turnaround in Tampa Bay. The Buccaneers have a strong nucleus to build around and other similarly set up teams have shown the way.
General manager Jason Licht is on record for saying he – and fans – expect playoffs next season. While Koetter wasn’t as forthright and didn’t make any Rex Ryan-like promises during his first day on the job, the head coach assured that the talent is there for instant success.
“I don’t think there’s a man in that locker room that doesn’t think we have the talent to make the playoffs,” Koetter said. “That’s 32 team’s goal, 12 are going to make it. My theory on that is if you’re going to say something to the media put your name on it. Jason put his name on it and it’s out there. We have a talented roster; I’m saying that.”
Zach is entering his 3rd year covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a writer for PewterReport.com. Since 2014, he's handled a large part of the beat reporting responsibilities at PR, attending all media gatherings and publishing and promoting content daily. Zach is a native of Sarasota, FL, and a graduate of the University of Tampa. He has also covered high school football for the Tampa Tribune and the NFL for Pro Player Insiders.
Contact him at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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