It's the end of an era: the Tampa Bay Buccaneers have just fired head coach Raheem Morris. Per Adam Schefter, the Bucs also relieved Morris' staff of his duties, which would presumably include OC Greg Olson and any assistant coaches.
The third-year coach ends his tenure with 17 wins and 31 losses. Having posted a 10-6 record in his second season as a head coach, a 10-game losing streak to end the 2011 season led to his firing. At the end of his tenure the Bucs had completely broken down: penalties, turnovers, an inability to tackle, blown coverages and a lack of effort were all problems during the final games of Morris reign as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' head coach.
When Raheem Morris was hired, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers wanted to rejuvenate the team and the fanbase. The Bucs had become an aged and largely talentless team, and Morris and GM Mark Dominik tried to overhaul the roster. This started with Morris himself, who was a defensive backs coach just one month before being elevated to the position of head coach.
Selecting quarterback Josh Freeman as the cornerstone of the franchise, the Bucs steered away from free agency and tried to build a team through the draft. Losing was the immediate result, and it was ultimately the end result of Morris' tenure. A 10-6 season in 2010 gave Bucs fans hope that the youthful plan was working, but a brutal 2011 season seems to have crushed any excitement among the fan base.
Despite a lack of talent being a clear culprit in the Bucs' losing skid, Mark Dominik was retained as the Buccaneers' general manager per Stephen Holder - although things could always change in the future. Dominik was given a four-year contract extension before the 2011 season.
The Bucs will start their head coaching search today. Jeff Fisher was recently linked to the Bucs as he was spotted at a team hotel, though he reportedly never met with the Buccaneers. Other names that will undoubtedly come up include Bill Cowher, Mike Sherman and Rob Chudzinski. We have written profiles on a few possible candidates, and will continue to look at different candidates over the next weeks.
With that, Raheem Morris' tenure comes to an end and a new era can begin for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.