The Tampa Bay Buccaneers introduced offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter to the media today. The veteran talked about many different things, but one thing that stood out throughout the conference call was his emphasis on adjusting the offense to his players. This is not a rigid coach who will implement his system regardless of the team's personnel.
"We're gonna do our best to take advantage of the talent that we do have," Koetter said. "Every offense has strengths and weaknesses. You try to play to your strengths, and hide your weaknesses."
"The system that you have has to be flexible enough to take into account the various strengths and weaknesses of your players. I think it's foolish to take a system and ram it down a player's throats if it doesn't play to that player's strengths."
And that's exactly what you want out of an offensive coordinator: someone who can adjust to the talent available to him, who won't force the issue if the talent isn't there, and who will do what he can to hide weaknesses and emphasize strengths. It's something the Bucs couldn't do last year -- although that's hard with an offensive line like that, anyway.
Speaking of those strengths, Koetter was impressed with the Bucs' talent. "Tampa Bay, personnel-wise is in better shape than one on the outside might think," he said. When asked about specific players he was excited about, he mentioned Mike Evans and Vincent Jackson, "two or three" good running backs, a "young tight end" (presumably referring to Austin Seferian-Jenkins).
The players he didn't name? Josh McCown, Mike Glennon or any offensive lineman.
On balance and running the ball
"I believe in a balanced offense a lot. And the reason for that is, if you asked any defensive coach what's the hardest thing to defend, one of the first things he'll tell you is balance. Defenses are too good these days in the NFL. If they can get a tip and know they only need to stop one thing, they're pretty good about stopping that one thing."
"Balance is huge. You gotta remember time and score factors into how much you can be balanced. If you're behind in the second half, there's only so many possessions in an NFL game so sometimes time and score affect it. But I definitely believe in balance."
Koetter noted that he wouldn't be making the decisions on which quarterback (if any) the Buccaneers should draft, and that he hadn't yet looked at draft prospects. Coaches generally don't get involved in the draft process until the Senior Bowl. However, Koetter did talk about the attributes he looked for in a quarterback. First, the ability to process information and make great decisions. Then, toughness. And after that, arm strength, accuracy, intelligence and mobility.
Koetter also mentioned that Josh McCown had done some good things in his career, and that Mike Glennon shared some attributes with Matt Ryan. Glennon and Ryan do share some stylistic similarities, though Ryan is clearly the better player overall.