On Friday, former Bucs head coach Jon Gruden took Dale Mabry south all the way to the water inside the premises of MacDill Air Force Base.

Gruden and his Monday Night Football crew took about 20 or so men of the military from all different branches, broke them up into positions, taught them some plays and ran a little practice session on a field that was on the base.

Gruden looked like he was back in his element out on the grass on Friday. He was running the players through all sorts of drills. He’s called random plays and made some of the quarterbacks yell them back to him. Also, as shown above, he even got the itch to play defender in some of his drills – above he plays the role of Ronde Barber.

He couldn’t let them have all the fun.

As the day went on Gruden even lightened up a bit. He let some of the quarterbacks let it loose on deep passes and even got into some of his complex plays. In the clip above, he showed the guys how to run his famous Spider 2 Y Banana.

He made sure they ran it until it was a completed pass. He couldn’t let his favorite play go out incomplete.

The on-field portion of the day went on for about two hours. After that Gruden took the time to meet with any and all people who were in attendance, both media and just fans. He made himself available for photos, conversations; whatever it was, he was all smiles.

Gruden held a light media session after the practice where one of the questions he was asked was about this year’s Buccaneers team. If you click on the video above, you can hear his full answer, but the main theme of it was that in the game of football, it’s often one or two plays that separate a win and a loss.

The Bucs have just been on that unlucky – or unexecuted – side.

One of the last questions for Gruden was about the upcoming Ring of Honor Ceremony for him at Raymond James Stadium next Monday night as the Buccaneers take on the Atlanta Falcons. On that night, Gruden will have his name go up on the side of the Bucs stadium for the rest of the franchise’s history as their first, and currently only, coach to lead them to a Super Bowl.

Gruden said it will be an emotional night for him. He talked about how he was raised in the Buccaneers franchise, as his dad worked for the team back in the 80’s. He said he’s excited to see the guys again (his Super Bowl staff and players). But, he also couldn’t help but utter a phrase that may carry a lot of weight.

“I miss it.”

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About the Author: Trevor Sikkema

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]
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surferdudes
4 years ago

Jon Gruden,” I miss it”. Well we’ve missed the playoffs since you left. No coach since he’s left has had the “juice” he brought to this town. Fans talk about his down years, but are willing to over look the down years the Saints, and Panthers had under their coaches. Jameis had one turnover Sunday, fans want to run the 23 yr old out of town. Ryan had three picks, Brees threw the came clinching pick in the endzone last night. I wonder if their fans are clamoring for their teams to trade, or draft a new Q.B. this morning?… Read more »

MIArmysoldier
MIArmysoldier
4 years ago

I would love to see gruden back on the side line he brings leadership, ferocity, and prowess that the bucs have lacked since he left really…but i have to say the after watching the pats over the past several years- and as put in the other article on pewter report- i would kinda be intrested to see what mcdaniels could do with winston. I think itd be an intresting pairing…along with that the pass catchers we know should be back next year barring incident or trade- that could be the dynamic change we need…but has he learned from his privious… Read more »

Ja'crispy
Ja'crispy
4 years ago

totally agree surf! I think if you add Gruden, a couple players in free agency ,and have a good draft we are going to be a playoff team next year.

macabee
macabee
4 years ago

I don’t have a dog in this fight so it’s mox nix for me. What I mean is that if Gruden returns, I’ll be good with that or if he doesn’t I won’t feel as though we missed on a chance to return to glory. I have no firm or even suggestive info from anybody that would be involved in making the decision to bring Gruden back as HC of the Bucs – either Gruden or the Glazers. Gruden’s appearances or even public statements are only suggestive, but not definitive. Like the pig and chicken in a ham and egg… Read more »

Mike.Seven
Mike.Seven
4 years ago

Read a rumour on Bronco site, Gruden has interest in going to a team along with Eli Manning to warm city, not Giants. Not sure Bucs pull the trigger on that much money. Gruden wants 25 million for 4 years. All rumour.

Buc 1976
Buc 1976
4 years ago

Jon G did not win the Superbowl with Dungy Offensive.
Jon also had M Kiffin as Defensive Coordinator.
If anyone thinks Dungy would have won a Superbowl here IMO could not happen. Dungy went to Indy and built a good defensive. He had Payton M. and a good offensive coordinator.

surferdudes
4 years ago

Watched the McDill tape on the Trib. Scott was that you alone in front of the ESPN bus talking to Gruden? I know you had to ask off the record of course if the Glazers have put some feelers out to him. Come on Scott, you can tell us, we won’t tell anybody,LoL.

Naplesfan
Naplesfan
4 years ago

Once a coach, always a coach. It gets on one’s blood. Whether the Glazers want to bring back Jon Gruden, nobody but them knows. Whether they want to fire the current coaching staff, or the GM, again, only the Glazers know. Whether there are other coaches who could come in and make us winners, like Belichick’s assistants, I think the answer is probably yes. Whether Gruden would do better than any other, who knows. But one thing is really, really obvious. If the Glazers fire Koetter and hire Jon Gruden as head coach, then it will not be just another… Read more »