Bucs Turn to Former Arizona Coach to Lead Team
The Tampa Bay Bucs have tabbed Bruce Arians as their new head coach, announcing Tuesday that they have signed the former Arizona Cardinals coach to a four-year contract with an option for a fifth year.
“Bruce Arians is one of the NFL’s most well-respected coaches over the past two decades and we are excited to have him leading our team. Throughout this process, we focused on finding the right coach with a proven ability to elevate our players and lead our team forward. Bruce has played a large role in the development and career success of some of our league’s best players and we look forward to seeing him continue that work here with our franchise,” said Buccaneers Owner/Co-Chairman Bryan Glazer in a statement on the team’s website.
Arians returns to the field after a one-year absence that saw him step away from the Cardinal’s head job because of health reasons. Arians underwent a physical in Tampa and his doctor was part of the interview process according to Glazer.
The 66-year-old Arians will replace Dirk Koetter, who was relieved of his job after leading the team to a 5-11 record in 2018.
Arians took over as the Cardinal’s head coach in 2013, leading the team to a 49-30-1 mark during his five seasons with the team. He has an overall coaching record of 58-33-1, also serving as interim coach of the Indianapolis Colts in 2012. Arians was named the NFL Coach of the Year for his efforts during that 2012 season and won the award again in 2014 with Arizona.
Expected to serve as Arian’s defensive coordinator is former New York Jets head coach Todd Bowles, while Byron Leftwich is expected to handle the play-calling duties as Arian’s offensive coordinator. Both Bowles and Leftwich held the same positions under Arians in Arizona.
The Buccaneers have not made the playoffs since the 2007 season, the second-longest drought in the NFL. Arians has two playoff appearances in his career, compiling a 1-2 record in postseason play.
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