The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have fired their special teams coach Bob Ligashesky, according to the Tampa Bay Times. Ligashesky's special teams unit was rather dismal all-around. Football Outsiders ranked them 28th in the NFL overall, and docked them specifically for kick returns and punt coverage teams. The Bucs' average kickoff return came to just 20.3 yards, which was ranked 30th in the NFL.
The Bucs did manage a league-leading four blocked punts during the 2012 season. No other team managed to block more than two punts. Greg Schiano made the blocking of punts a priority in his first year as coach, but it seems that Ligashesky's units were too awful in other areas for that one positive point to matter. The dysfunction was pretty obvious: the Bucs didn't settle on a punt returner until midway through the season, when they brought in Roscoe Parrish to return punts, but not until after having tried numerous other players at the position with disastrous results. Similarly, the Bucs couldn't find any player worthy of a returning a kick.
The timing of this firing is a little odd: right after the Senior Bowl, and at a time when most NFL teams have already made their hires. The Bucs have had a month to contemplate any staff movements, and it took them that full month to decide to fire their special teams coach. They will find it fairly difficult to find a quality replacement at this point.
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