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Bucs Coaching Search - Seeing the Licht

Bucs GM has more power than any GM since Rich McKay.

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

One of the major things that has emerged from the Bucs again setting the reset button is the transfer of control and power to Tampa Bay General Manager Jason Licht.

Licht grew up in winning franchises in New England, Philadelphia and Arizona. He was in control of the Bucs' drafts, which in the last two years have produced top starters and contributors in Jameis Winston, Mike Evans, Donovan Smith, Ali Marpet, Charles Sims and Kwon Alexander.

When the Glazers threw up their hands and decided that they no longer have faith in Lovie, they also made another critical decision. They admitted the way they have been making these decisions wasn't working.

So they gave Jason Licht power that they haven't ceded since Malcolm Glazer turned the team over to his boys. He has power over the 53 man roster and he will choose the next head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Of course, the Glazer boys will have to approve his decision, but they are turning it over to their football guy.

While it remains to be seen if Licht is up for the challenge, I think its a very good decision by the Glazers. Malcolm wasn't some football savant. He turned over the franchise to his General Manager Rich McKay and it brought the team's first sustained winning period in franchise history under coach Tony Dungy - who is once again a finalist for the Hall of Fame.

Of course, when Malcolm stepped back and the boys took control, they decided Dungy was wasting this team's opportunity for the Super Bowl. After trying to lure Bill Parcells and failing, they again, they turned it over to McKay, who brought them Marvin Lewis. The same Marvin Lewis who is one of the longest tenured coaches in the league and again has led the Bengals to the post season, somewhere Tampa Bay hasn't been in 8 years.

The boys rejected Lewis because he was too much like Dungy (defensive minded, conservative - so they thought), and then went on the magic carpet ride of insanity that ultimately resulted in Tampa Bay shredding their future for the right to secure Jon Gruden as their coach.

They fired Gruden after six years because he wouldn't draft a quarterback and because they feared Raheem Morris would leave the team and become the next Mike Tomlin.

They fired Raheem because he was too buddy buddy with his players and they didn't respect him, quitting on him down the stretch of the 2011 season.

They thought they had Chip Kelly, but he Parcells'd them. In a panic move, they hired Greg Schiano on the recommendation of Bill Belichick.

Schiano would last two years before the implosion of Josh Freeman, MRSA and the misuse of Darrelle Revis did him in.

The boys realized that they made a terrible mistake by forcing Dungy out and wanted a new Dungy - a connection to the glory days of the past. They tabbed Lovie Smith and to fend off competitors, gave him absolute power.

I mean, it couldn't possibly be any worse, right?

We all know how it turned out. So this time, I think the Glazer boys are waving the white flag, admitting their mistakes and turning it over to the guy they trust - Jason Licht - to find the right coach for this team.

Can Licht do it? He was assistant GM during Arizona's coaching search that resulted in the hiring of Bruce Arians. His remake of the amateur scouting department certainly has reaped rewards for the team.

Some attribute the free agency failures to him but if you look at the talent that was brought in - former Bears or Cowboys - guys that would "fit Lovie's system", you have to wonder if that was more of a Lovie call than Licht's.

I'm on record as saying if the Bucs do anything but promote Koetter this will be a terrible decision. However, the fact that the Glazers have decided its Jason Licht's decision gives me hope. It worked for the Old Man. Hopefully it will work for the boys.