TAMPA, FL - JANUARY 27: Coach Greg Schiano of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers speaks to the media at an introduction press conference at the team training facility January 27, 2012 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have now officially hired Eric Stokes as their director of college scouting, as was reported yesterday. That position was not filled last year after Dennis Hickey was promoted to director of player personnel. With his addition, the Buccaneers now have a whopping 19 people in their personnel department, scouting players and managing their roster. That's a decent uptick compared to last year, when they had 17 people in their personnel department.
A similar growth can be seen in their coaching staff. The Bucs had 20 coaches last season in various capacities last season, while they have 22 on the roster now. This will please many fans, as the coaching staff seemed overwhelmed last season. But more coaches (or personnel men) isn't necessarily better, as it can lead to an unclear hierarchy and a lack of accountability. Coaches and personnel evaluators can work at cross purposes, and the bigger a staff, the harder it is to keep them all working the same way and with the same goals in mind.
The Bucs' confused hierarchy doesn't help in this matter. Butch Davis exemplifies this problem: he's listed as a "special assistant to the head coach", but he is part of the personnel department. What's his function, who reports to him and who does he report to? Similarly, there's now a director of player personnel as well as a director of college scouting and a general manager and it's entirely unclear to people outside the building who does what.
Among the coaching staff, there is an offensive coordinator, but also a senior assistant with an unclear role. Obviously Greg Schiano is the boss, but how does the relationship between the coordinator and senior assistant work?
All of this is not a problem if the organization is well-run and everyone has a clearly defined role. But an overloaded staff can implode quickly if they're poorly managed.