The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are looking for a rightful successor for Dirk Koetter, who was fired on December 30. Here are some more names the team should consider hiring.
Bruce Arians is open to the idea of hearing out the Glazers and general manager Jason Licht about the idea of becoming the Bucs new head coach. Licht has prior experience working in the Arizona Cardinals’ front office while Arians was the head coach.
Despite health concerns, Arians would be an attractive option given his past running offenses and helping to rear quarterback Peyton Manning in his early years. During Arians’ run as offensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns, the team achieved a rare winning season of 9-7, in his second year. In 2003 he left for the Pittsburgh Steelers, initially becoming their wide receivers coach before taking over play-calling duties as OC in 2007. He was instrumental in helping the team win two Super Bowls, XL and XLIII.
After a brief stint as interim head coach with the Indianapolis Colts, he found his way to becoming the Cardinals’ head coach until 2017, when he made two playoff appearances, losing to the Carolina Panthers on both occasions. He’s had experience coaching franchise quarterback Ben Roethlisberger for his two Super Bowls with Pittsburgh and veteran quarterback Carson Palmer at Arizona.
Arians has a career 49-30-1 (62 percent) record and 1-2 in the postseason. Aside from the lackluster last two seasons, Arians is very capable of turning a squad around without resorting to building from the ground up, which makes him ideal. His familiarity with the NFC is icing on the cake.
Jim Caldwell has history with the Bucs after being recruited by Tony Dungy in 2001 out of Wake Forest to coach quarterbacks. Though his stint was short following Dungy’s firing, he gained invaluable experience, following Dungy to the Indianapolis Colts as quarterbacks coach and assistant head coach.
As an assistant and offensive coordinator, Caldwell has two Super Bowls, first in 2006 for the Colts and second in 2012 as offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the Baltimore Ravens. He would be perfect to help rear quarterback Jameis Winston given his past experience with Peyton Manning, Joe Flacco and Matthew Stafford.
Caldwell made the Super Bowl with the Colts in his coaching debut, taking the reins from Dungy after he announced his retirement in 2009, but in a losing effort. He has a 62-50 (55 percent) regular season record and 2-4 postseason record.
The NFL door is certainly not shut to him considering his current position as an XFL consultant on football operations. He’s had interviews with the Green Bay Packers and New York Jets.
It’s hard to deny the rampant success Dan Campbell’s had with the New Orleans Saints. After helping to revamp the Saints’ offense, they finished 8th overall this season. Despite a greater emphasis on the run, the Saints finished 12th in passing yards and 6th in rushing. In 2017, the Saints finished as the second-best offense in the league, 5th in passing and 5th in rushing. While we can credit the 39-year old Drew Bress for making much of that happen, Campbell’s decision as a tight ends and assistant head coach to emphasize the run more made a profound impact, extending Brees’ career.
Finishing 2018 at 13-3 and homefield along with back-to-back division titles is certainly nothing to scoff at in the NFC South. If Campbell decides to stay, Pete Carmichael, Jr. could also be a possibility. He’s been an offensive coordinator under Sean Payton since 2009 and prior, Marty Schottenheimer with San Diego, now Los Angeles Chargers.