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Bucs Hire Bruce Arians as Head Coach

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have hired 66-year-old two-time NFL Coach of the Year, Bruce Arians, as their head coach for the 2019 season. Tampa Bay, mired in an 11-year drought from the playoffs look, is now on their 5th coach since firing Jon Gruden in 2009. Per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, it is a 4 year deal with a 5th year option.

In Arians, the Bucs hope they’ve found a QB whisperer, as he’s brought the best out of Peyton Manning, Ben Roethlisberger, Andrew Luck and Carson Palmer. He has a relationship with both QB Jameis Winston and Bucs GM Jason Licht and his offensive style is not dissimilar to the offense of Dirk Koetter, as an off-shoot of the Air Coryell vertical attack. In addition, Arians’ philosophy of “no risk it, no biscuit” is something that’s worked for him in his previous head coaching stops in Arizona and Indianapolis.

Including Indianapolis, where he took over on an interim basis as his good friend Chuck Pagano battled Leukemia, Arians has a 58-33-1, .630 winning percentage and his teams made the playoffs in three of his six years. For some reason, though, the NFL record book holders decided to award Arians’ wins in Indianapolis to Chuck Pagano (even though Arians was the head coach), so officially, his record his 49-30-1 (.619) boasting 10 win seasons in 3 of 5 years for his time in Arizona.

Arians defenses have always been 3-4 defenses, and Todd Bowles (a coordinator with a 3-4 playbook) is expected to be defensive coordinator in Tampa Bay, so one would expect a dramatic change in philosophy and personnel with the Buccaneers on the defensive side of the football.

The biggest questions about Arians isn’t whether he’s a good coach, he absolutely is, it’s about whether at his age if the fire is still in the belly. Tampa Bay is hoping they get the fiery coach we all saw in Amazon’s All or Nothing: A Season With the Arizona Cardinals series. If they get that guy, Jameis Winston and the Buccaneers are in for some good things.

J.C. De La Torre

Want to give JC a piece of your mind? E-mail him at JC De La Torre is formerly a columnist/blogger for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers blog site where in 2016, he was nominated as best sportswriter in Tampa Bay by Creative Loafing. Previously, he served as a featured columnist for Bleacher Report on Tampa Bay sports, an editor and featured columnist for SB Nation Tampa Bay covering the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Gators, wrote for’s Blog Blitz and contributed to Pewter Report, one of the top magazines on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. JC is also a filmmaker, comic writer and rabid Whovian.

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