Buccaneers quarterback Jameis Winston, and head coach Bruce Arians took the podium today to address the media for the first time in nearly two months. Many of the responses were to be expected – “Players are doing great… We’re all glad to be back… Can’t wait to be able to hit again.” Same speech, different year.
Bruce Arians Has Seen Everything
The investigator in me wants to read between the lines to pick up what might otherwise have gone unnoticed. Throughout the interview, the Buccaneers 2019 draft class was brought up. Interestingly enough, Arians went out of his way to specifically praise his rookies.
Bruce Arians says the Bucs have “the most mature” group of rookies he’s seen in his time in the NFL. Calls them “serious men.”
— Scott Smith (@ScottSBucs) July 25, 2019
At first glance, it just seems like your typical “blazé-blazé” response; something you would expect of a first-year head coach talking about his hand-picked rookies. Except for one very important point: No coach in Tampa Bay since the days of Jon Gruden and Tony Dungy has had the kind of credentials, experience and player testimonials that Arians brings.
Is this sort of clout justified? A look into Arians coaching past confirms it. Seeing that he has coached some phenomenal rookies throughout his career, it makes today’s claim that much bolder. When focusing primarily on his first head coaching gig with Indianapolis Colts, there’s a splash list of players left. Some rookies to note were Andrew Luck, Coby Fleener, T.Y Hilton, Tyrann Mathieu, David Johnson, and Robert Nkemdiche.
Then, of course, we have the Buccaneers first draft class with Arians at the helm. Devin White, Sean Murphy-Bunting, Jamel Dean, Mike Edwards, Anthony Nelson, Scotty Miller, and Terry Beckner were all selected by Arians staff. Considering the aforementioned names of players that were coached by Arians, could the 2019 Tampa Bay draft class be the one to remember?