ESPN: Buccaneers to hire Greg Schiano as head coach, finalizing contract

According to ESPN (and as earlier reported by 620 WDAE), the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are trying to hire Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano as their next head coach. The two sides are finalizing a contract, which means it's not done yet, but it's close. Which is exactly where the Bucs stood with Chip Kelly before he pulled out, so don't take this as meaning the deal is done.

If the two sides do come to an agreement and Schiano does not have a change of heart, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will have pulled off yet another surprise move. They have interviewed multiple former NFL head coaches and current NFL coordinators over the past weeks, but the only coaches they have actually tried to hire were from college: Chip Kelly and Greg Schiano.

Further reinforcing the fact that the Bucs and Schiano are close to a deal is another ESPN report that Mike Sherman is in Miami to become the Dolphins' offensive coordinator, which indicates that he does not believe he will get the head coaching job in Tampa Bay.

Greg Schiano is a defensive-minded coach who has managed to rebuild and resurrect a failing Rutgers program over the past decade. He has a few years of experience coaching in the NFL, and has been endorsed heavily by Peter King this offseason, who noted that Bill Belichick thinks the world of him. In fact, Peter King now reports that the Bucs aren't the first team to try to hire Schiano. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, the St. Louis Rams spoke to him as well.

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