Want to really get to know new Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians? Aside from reading all about him on PewterReport.com, there is no better way than to watch NFL Films’ documentary, Bruce Arians: A Football Life, which can be seen below in this article.
Bruce Arians: A Football Life chronicles his rise as a high school quarterback that got kicked out of his high school yet found his way to Virginia Tech, which helped launch Arians’ coaching career. Among his many coaching stops, Arians spent two years learning from Alabama legend Paul “Bear” Bryant, who became one of his mentors.
“He was the master of personnel,” Arians said of Bryant. “Coach didn’t coach X’s and O’s – he coached people. … His last words to me were, ‘Coach ‘em hard and hug ‘em later.’ To this day, that’s who I’ve tried to be.”
Arians is known for his “no risk-it, no biscuit” motto, which took hold in Arizona where he led the Cardinals to three straight winning seasons and two playoff appearances.
“You play for him and you see that he just has guts,” said former Cardinals quarterback Carson Palmer. “He’ll let it rip, he’ll let it fly – no matter what.”
After waiting decades to finally get a head coach opportunity in the NFL, Arians was hired by the Cardinals to be the team’s head coach at age 60 after he spent one year in Indianapolis as the interim head coach where he went 9-3 and was named the NFL Coach of the Year while filling in for Chuck Pagano, who was diagnosed with leukemia during the season in 2012.
“I don’t have to please anybody,” Arians said upon taking the Cardinals job. “I’m going to do whatever the hell I want from here on out.”
Arians, who also won NFL Coach of the Year honors with the Cardinals during the 2015 season after leading Arizona to the playoffs with a 13-3 record, is as passionate about family as he is about football and mandates that his assistants find the right life-work balance.
“When I hear about guys sleeping in their office and doing those things I wonder what the hell they’re doing there because the game ain’t that hard,” Arians said. “The work will always be there, but the kids won’t. I tell my coaches if you miss a recital – piano, dance whatever – a football game, a basketball game I’ll fire you.”
Bruce Arians: A Football Life details how important Arians’ wife Christine and their kids Jake and Kristi Anne are to him.
Arians has coached several great NFL quarterbacks, including Peyton Manning and Andrew Luck during their rookie seasons in the league, as well as Pittsburgh’s Ben Roethlisberger and Arizona’s Carson Palmer. Arians, who won two Super Bowls in Pittsburgh (XL, XLIII) under Bill Cowher and Mike Tomlin, is tasked with the duty of elevating Jameis Winston’s career in Tampa Bay as Winston enters his fifth-year option season with the Bucs.
“Bruce has a knack with all players but he has a special knack with quarterbacks,” said former Virginia Tech head coach Jimmy Sharpe, who coached Arians in college and is one of his mentors. “It’s like he’s the – what do you call it? – quarterback whisperer or something or other.”
“The building of relationships and getting to know guys, especially quarterbacks – that bond has to be so much stronger and deeper than any other bond,” Arians said.
The Bucs just made a fascinating hire with a proven winner in Arians, who took the year off from coaching in 2018 after retiring from Arizona following the 2017 season. For more on Tampa Bay’s new head coach, watch Bruce Arians: A Football Life by clicking the video below.