As I stepped out onto the pool deck earlier today to enjoy a morning cup of joe, the beautiful morning sun began to rise in the east on a glorious Florida morning. I realized that the short list of coaches for head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers should not be a short list at all. That list should be as long as my arm. To hurry a hire at this point would seem a genuine injustice to all of the fans of the Buccaneers. This said, for all I know, the krewe at One Buc could already be ironing the tablecloths, setting up the microphones, and informing the media of an imminent press conference. But I hope not.
First off. The next head coach steps into calm waters. The bar has not exactly been set too high as of late. Fortunately, we have a team of higher character individuals and at least in the immediate future, we do not expect TMZ to break with some outrageous video showing one of our players doing something completely stupid. I do stress, don’t expect. There is a pretty solid core of talent on this team, and the next coach will surely have an eye toward how to build on the positive pieces already in place.
Secondly, seriously, have you stepped outside in the past 3-4 days? As the weather across the country will fluctuate over the next two(2) months between balmy, freezing and somewhere in between. We here in the Sunshine State are settling in for the average weather will have until summer, that being the occasional 3 day winter, followed by several days of walk on the beach weather. I understand that a head coach of an NFL franchise is not exactly planning sunset barbeques on the Gulf of Mexico when considering a job. But they ARE thinking about their families. Be it immediate, or a support network of extended family members that assist in the absences of the coach when they are working twelve(12) plus hour days, seven(7) days a week. One of my favorite stories is of seeing Uncle Monte, Monte Kiffin, fishing in the surf in Redington Shores after a long day of scheming defensive plays in his lab in Tampa. Paradise is not a priority for a coach, but it sure doesn’t hurt the Bucs in selling our franchise. Sell it!
Last but certainly not least. Our quest for a new captain of the ship should not be limited to just the currently available lot. I want due diligence given to all available candidates. Not on Black Monday, not after divisional playoff round, but after the Super Bowl. It may end up being a coach who isn’t even currently employed. College or Pro. But it seems with the draft four(4) months away, and player contracts falling under the auspice of the general manager. The coaching search does not need to operate at hyper speed. At the moment, we have a fifth year option on our quarterback, a left tackle that requires negotiations, and a speedy wide receiver we should be saying goodbye to. Let’s make sure we get the right coach and not just the best available. Here’s to a new, beautiful Florida sun rising over our Tampa Bay Buccaneers for many days to come.