Bruce Arians and general manager Jason Licht are putting the finishing touches on Tampa Bay’s new coaching staff, and have signed Todd McNair to coach the Bucs’ running backs as PewterReport.com alluded to earlier in the week.


McNair played running back for Arians at Temple and was a sixth-round pick by Kansas City in 1989, the year that Arians became the running backs coach for the Chiefs. McNair was a third-down back in K.C. and played with Christian Okoye, who was the league’s leading rusher in 1989, and Barry Word. After five years with the Chiefs, McNair spent two years with Houston before one more season in Kansas City in 1996 before retiring.

McNair coached at Camden High School in New Jersey after his playing days were over, and then coached running backs for the Cleveland Browns from 2001-03 alongside Arians, who was the Browns offensive coordinator. McNair joined Pete Carroll’s USC Trojans staff from 2004-09 where he coached Heisman Trophy-winning running back Reggie Bush, LenDale White and Joe McKnight.

McNair’s contract was not renewed after six years at USC when he was alleged to have some wrongdoing in the recruiting violations that led to USC vacating wins, a national championship and Bush’s Heisman Trophy. McNair came close to joining Arians’ coaching staff in Arizona in 2013, but backed out.

The Bucs are also close to adding another assistant in defensive backs coach Kevin Ross, who played cornerback for the Chiefs with McNair and Arians for part of his Kansas City career (1984-93, 1997). Ross also played for Arians at Temple, and coached cornerbacks with him in Arizona from 2013-17 and then stayed on with the Cardinals last year in the same capacity under head coach Steve Wilks.

It is believed that Ross, whose nickname in Kansas City was “The Rock,” will coach cornerbacks and that Nick Rapone, who coached safeties under Arians in Arizona from 2013-17, will coach the Bucs safeties. Rapone spent the 2018 season coaching at Delaware and was set to take an assistant’s position under Steve Spurrier with the Orlando Apollos, a new franchise in the American Alliance of Football, which starts this spring, before Arians called him to join him in Tampa Bay.

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Scott Reynolds is in his 23rd year of covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as the vice president, publisher and senior Bucs beat writer for PewterReport.com. Author of the popular SR's Fab 5 column on Fridays, Reynolds oversees web development and forges marketing partnerships for PewterReport.com in addition to his editorial duties. A graduate of Kansas State University in 1995, Reynolds enjoys giving back to the community as the defensive line coach for his sons' Pop Warner team, the South Pasco Predators. Reynolds can be reached at: [email protected]

7 COMMENTS

  1. Interested if we’ll see any honest criticism regarding the assistant coaches hired. I understand a coach wanting to surround himself with guys he’s familiar with but it doesn’t seem like there was any consideration given to keep some of the accomplished coaches from Dirk’s staff. Other than the Bowles and Goodwin hires I’m not really impressed with the assistants that were brought in…not sure how you could let a bright young coach like Fulton walk out to door after the job he did.

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    • You should not be surprised. IN most Pro and and even college sports, new HC’s bring in their own people.
      They even do it in Cooperations across the USA. Get over it. Koetter, Lovie, Schiano, Gruden all..did the same.

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    • Fulton’s coaching philosophy probably doesn’t align with Arians’. He’ll find a spot on somebody’s staff. Of that I have no doubt

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  2. New staff’s get turned over all the time when new HC’s are brought in from outside the organization. Like Fulton too, but it’s not like he’s the only quality WR coach out there. Read some great articles re: Todd McNair recently and how the USC saga and subsequent court battle with the NCAA basically destroyed his life. Really glad to see him get an opportunity on this staff.

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  3. @Scott, with a glaring weakness in the secondary and so many former Cardinals coaches and LSU Tigers in town, do you see any reason why the bucs wouldn’t make a big push for the Honeybadger to come to Tampa?

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    • I was wondering the same thing. Also curious toward acquiring Collins and/or Ramsey

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  4. Honeybadger = $$$$$$$$$$$$

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