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All Hail Alex Van Pelt

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Here's someone we don't talk about much, but deserves much of the credit for last year's success: Alex Van Pelt. The former backup quarterback was hired as the quarterbacks coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers last offseason, and Josh Freeman has taken some humongous steps forward under his guidance. Freeman had to put the work in, but Alex Van Pelt helped him correct his footwork, his fundamentals, his accuracy and his decision-making. As a former NFL quarterback he understands the position like a player, and knows what needs to happen for Josh Freeman to be successful.

A fact of life in the NFL is that offensive coordinators and quarterbacks coaches move on after a while. They want to try something different, or try their hand at head coaching. At some point Greg Olson will move on, possibly as early as next season, and it's quite possible that Alex Van Pelt will be the guy to step up at that point. While Greg Olson has run a good offense the past season, Alex Van Pelt is more likely to be a long-term fixture with the Buccaneers' coaching staff. I hope he stays a good, long while.