After three seasons as the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Bruce Arians announced his retirement this summer. Much was made of his retirement because Tom Brady had just returned. And many assumed he would only return if Arians would be fired.
Let’s be clear, nearly everyone associated to this rumor has disputed it. Former Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians dismissed it as chatter. Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht when asked about it, “I make of it as chatter, just like you said.”
The Brady Rumor Factory
So at this point, you either believe Arians and Licht, or the Brady rumor factory. That same rumor factory that insisted Brady would come out of retirement to play with the San Francisco 49ers. But we get it, you’re thinking, “of course Arians and Licht would dismiss it, it’s just damage control.” That’s fair, so let’s check with an NFL Insider, one who is respected throughout the industry.
“I don’t think that’s true. I really don’t. And it’s one of those things, I get tweeted the night that BA (Bruce Arians) retired, you know, basically about how he got to do what he wished, which was hand his team over to his top lieutenant Todd Bowles, with a great chance to win the Super Bowl, right? It was everything [he] wanted. And I got accused of all sorts of things on social media, which tends to happen.”
Rapoport continued that Arians wanted to leave Todd Bowles in the best situation to succeed.
“And I’m like, okay, either, you know, and I’ve talked to, I would say, six or seven Bucs sources and people close to Brady, who all say that’s completely ridiculous.” Rapoport continued, “And all said it was ridiculous throughout. And so, could everyone be lying to me? Sure. It’s theoretically possible there could be some great vendetta to make sure that everyone tells the same lies to me at the same time. It’s possible. Or Bruce Arians just got his team set, got all the free agents, got Brady back, and handed Bowles the best team you can imagine.”