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The Bucs fired offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich as a part of an enormous home cleansing

The Bucs fired offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich as a part of an enormous home cleansing

The Bucs fired offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich as a part of an enormous home cleansing

TAMPA — When Byron Leftwich arrived for work Thursday, he discovered a painted commemorative NFL soccer in every coach’s locker congratulating the employees on profitable back-to-back division championships for the primary time in franchise historical past.

An hour later, the bookcase took on a brand new which means for the Bucs’ offensive coordinator: Thanks, you are fired!

After a shedding season and one playoff look regardless of having Tom Brady at quarterback, the Bucs made drastic adjustments to Todd Bowles’ teaching employees.

Leftwich and 5 assistant coaches have been fired and three others retired. Gone are receivers coach Kevin Garver, punters coach Chris Boniol, operating backs coach Todd McNair, assistant line of defense coach Lori Locust and offensive high quality management coach Jeff Fort.

Three different assistants have determined to retire, together with quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen, 66; senior offensive assistant Rick Christoffel, 70; and out of doors linebackers coach Bob Sanders, 69.

The selections have been made after assembly with members of the Glazer household, homeowners of the Bowls Books, and basic supervisor Jason Licht.

“We recognize the arduous work and contributions of all of those coaches to our success over the previous 4 seasons,” Bowles stated in a press release. “As a collective group, we didn’t meet the excessive requirements we set for this previous 12 months and my focus is now on doing what is important to make sure a profitable 2023 season. These have been very tough choices however it was one thing I wanted to maneuver ahead with our soccer group.”

Bowles gathered his complete teaching employees round 10 a.m. and commenced the assembly by saying the group was about $60 million over the 2023 wage cap, confirming they might have a troublesome time signing many free brokers. Tom Brady will price the Bucs $35.104 million in useless cap area. Then Bowles started calling his employees members into his workplace and telling them their fates.

Fired some employees members who weren’t thought-about important however fairly outside-the-box hires by former head coach Bruce Arians. Boniol, for instance, labored solely with place-kicker Ryan Succop and below particular groups coach Keith Armstrong. Locust was among the many first full-time feminine assistants employed by an NFL group however served as an assistant to line of defense coach and co-defensive coordinator Casey Rogers. Fort assisted Leftwich in varied duties.

Bowles was not promoted to go coach till March 30 and basically inherited the teaching employees from Leftwich and Arians, who retired to take jobs as senior advisors to Licht.

Regardless of the Bucs rating final within the NFL in speeding yards, common and energy, the Bucs have, for now, retained offensive line coach Joe Gilbert and operating recreation coordinator Harold Goodwin.

Coordinator Byron Leftwich has seen a steep decline in scoring this season. [ JEFFEREE WOO | Times ]
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Leftwich’s firing was not surprising after the Bucs suffered the steepest decline in offense in league historical past, going from 61 touchdowns in 2021 to only 31 in 2022.

Brady tried a career-high 66 passes in Monday night time’s 31-14 NFC wild-card recreation loss to the Dallas Cowboys, two shy of the league’s playoff file and essentially the most in his 383 profession video games, together with the playoffs.

Leftwich, 43, joined the Bucs as offensive coordinator in 2019 as a part of Arians’ authentic teaching employees. His dismissal comes after a season wherein the Bucs scored 198 fewer factors than in 2021.

The Bucs averaged greater than 30 factors per recreation below Leftwich within the 2020 season, after they gained Tremendous Bowl 55, and 2021, after they gained their first back-to-back NFC South titles.

Even with Jameis Winston at quarterback in 2019, the Bucs averaged 28.6 factors per recreation.

However this season, Tampa Bay struggled to common 18.2 factors throughout the common season. The group has scored 30 factors simply twice, together with a 41-31 loss to Kansas Metropolis on Oct. 2.

The Bucs will start an instantaneous seek for Leftwich’s alternative. Among the many candidates is Alabama offensive coordinator Invoice O’Brien. The previous Penn State and Houston Texans head coach was Brady’s quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator for 3 seasons in New England.

Tampa Bay negotiated with O’Brien a 12 months in the past, after they believed Leftwich could be employed as the top coach of the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Georgia offensive coordinator Todd Monken is a reputation to observe if he is keen to return to Tampa Bay on the identical place in 2018, calling performs for Dirk Koetter. Wanting on the present roster, the Bucs might contemplate Eagles quarterbacks coach Brian Johnson or former Gators head coach Dan Mullen, each of whom labored with Kyle Trask at Florida. Trask is the one Bucs quarterback below contract by way of 2023.

Leftwich performed quarterback with the Steelers when Arians was Pittsburgh’s offensive coordinator and a disciple of the “No Threat It, No Biscuits” offense that featured a wide-open, deep passing recreation.

In his first season with the Bucs, Brady handed for 4,633 yards with 40 touchdowns and 12 interceptions whereas main Tampa Bay to a Tremendous Bowl championship.

He adopted that up in 2021 by main the NFL with 5,316 passing yards, 43 touchdowns and 12 interceptions.

However below Leftwich, the Bucs by no means discovered any steadiness with the run recreation. Over the previous two common seasons, Brady led the league with 719 and 733 passing makes an attempt.

It is unclear what influence Thursday’s teaching adjustments can have on Brady’s determination to play in 2023. He turns 46 subsequent August and is an unrestricted free agent.

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