In addition to numerous coaches and front office members at the Senior Bowl last week, there were a select few retired players in attendance. One in particular was David Garrard. And with his unique perspective on a certain Buccaneers coach, it was informative to hear what the former Jaguars quarterback had to say.
The recently retired (2013) Garrard played under the Bucs’ newly hired offensive coordinator, Dirk Koetter, from 2007-2010 in Jacksonville. He spoke with enthusiasm regarding his former coach, claiming first off, that Koetter was a great listener and always took input from his quarterback.
“It was great (playing for Koetter),” Garrard said. “The one thing that I always told everybody about Dirk was, first of all, he listened to you. He welcomed any information that you had during the week for the game plan. That makes a quarterback feel pretty good. If I have something that I think can work, to be able to put it out there, practice it and, if he likes it, we’ll keep it in.”
Along with his detailed preparation throughout the weak, Garrard also praised Koetter’s in-game coaching, especially when it came to play-calling and finding a good offensive rhythm.
“But then the number one thing was, in the game, he just had the knack to call the right play at the right time,” Garrard said. “It just seemed like over and over and over, just when I’m thinking, ‘Man, we should get to this play,’ he calls it. Even plays that I wasn’t thinking of, he’d be ready to call and they work. Just his ability to break the other team down and make the quarterback feel comfortable going out into the game, knowing that what we practiced and what we saw on film was going to work.”
It’s no surprise that Garrard has such high respect for his former coach. Before Koetter’s arrival in Jacksonville in 2007, Garrard’s highest passing total was 1,735 with a QB rating of 80 (2006). Then, in just Koetter’s first season at the helm of the offense, he threw for 2,509 yards with a rating of 102 and a trip to the playoffs.
While Garrard was never known for being an elite quarterback, he continued to improve during Koetter’s time in Jacksonville. He eclipsed the 3,500-yard mark twice (2008-09) and threw for more touchdowns than interceptions all four years.
“He’s so smart,” Garrard said. “He’s so smart that it’s almost scary. He knows football, he knows the offense and he knows how to get it across to the players in a way that makes them feel comfortable to go out and execute.”
While Bucs fans are wary of getting overly optimistic this early on about the new offensive coordinator – especially since there has yet to be a training camp session – hearing such praise from a former protégé should garner some hope towards the future. Hearing Garrard say that Koetter’s great at crafting a game plan around a quarterback’s specific skill-set is especially promising given that the Buccaneers, in all likelihood, will have a rookie under center in 2015.
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: [email protected]
Why not bucs fans GET QB GARRARD to be the new Veteran QB to help the new rookie qb. I say sign him-go bucs
Hmmmmmmmmmm. Now just who does Garrard resemble? Let the dots be connected.
Why would anyone deliberately spend the 1st overall pick on a guy that plays like Garrard? Perhaps you’re joking. I hate communicating via text or written messages. One day a war is going to start because a smiling emoticon wasn’t added at the end of a President’s sentence.
A big, fairly mobile QB with a strong arm as compared to a rather thin athletic QB for those trying to predict the Bucs choice.
“But then the number one thing was, in the game, he just had the knack to call the right play at the right time.” I’ve never anyone say that about a Bucs OC. God bless you Koetter! Also, it sounds to me that Garrard has aspirations to be a play caller himself one day. He’s always been a class act so if he decides to make that step I hope someone at some level gives him an opportunity.
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