When Bruce Arians took to the stage today to do his introductory press conference, it felt like the Tampa Bay Buccaneers started the 2019 season with a win.
There was a certain confidence and swagger that Bruce Arians brought to the mic that has been lacking inside the walls of One Buc place lately. He started the presser by thanking the Glazer family as well as general manager Jason licht. As many know, Licht’s relationship was one of the main reasons as to why Arians came to Tampa Bay and thank god the two knew each other from their days in Arizona.
There were many memorable quotes from Bruce Arians today, but my favorite quote of the day came on the second question asked. Arians was asked about the similarities between the 2013 Cardinals and the 2019 Buccaneers and he had the following to say.
“This one’s much easier I believe. When I walked into Arizona, we had no quarterbacks. We were fortunate enough to sign Drew Stanton then trade for Carson Palmer. People want to know what’s your system? Your system’s your players,” Arians said. This coaching staff will build a system to what our players do. When we meet as coaches, I ask them, ‘Please don’t tell me what our players can’t do. Tell me what they can do and then build around that.’ I think the core is here and obviously some of the rooms are outstanding. There, it was a little bit further behind.”
Wow, what a sigh of relief it is to hear that the coaching staff will adjust the system to the players and not force the players to adjust to the system. I mean, it sounds like an obvious task, do things that your players benefit from, but far too often over the last decade that hasn’t been the case. Finally, that looks to be on the verge of changing and the fan of me is on the edge of his seat waiting to see what is in store.
Not only do the Buccaneers have one of the best coaches in the NFL, but from top to bottom, it’s looking like they will have one of the best all around staffs as well. That’s another area that has been lacking with this team and with Arians bringing over many of the coaches who he has had success with certainly helps.
One of those coaches, is new defensive coordinator Todd Bowles. Bowles, worked with Arians in Arizona from 2014-2015 and was eventually hired by the New York Jets for their head coaching position. As a coordinator, Bowles is one of the most respected guys around the league and will play a huge part in turning this defense from one of the worst into a formidable unit. One thing that Bowles is known for is his aggression and Arians eluded to that on Thursday as well as what he learned about relying on your staff.
“That’s one of the things I learned in Indianapolis. Becoming the interim leader, I was never the head coach, we always had Chuck as the head coach. As the interim leader, there wasn’t any time. I learned how to delegate,” Arians said. “Do your job, do your job, I’ll do my job, I’ll decide if we go for it on fourth and it worked. Fortunately, I got Todd in Arizona. If I click over – and I usually don’t have to tell him to blitz anyway – but if I click over, bring them all. And he knows it.”
Again, something Buccaneer fans have been asking for, an aggressive style defense that isn’t afraid to bring the house when it’s necessary and mix things up. Arians also mentioned that the whole 4-3, 3-4 debate is sort of moot anyway. Nickel defense is played on 70% of snaps nowadays and four Defensive lineman fit in that package.
The final quote that really caught my attention was towards the end of the presser. Arians was asked how important it was that he and his staff are familiar with each other and what that means moving forward. Based on his answer, you can really tell how much respect he has from his peers and assistants.
“It’s extremely [important]. Trust, loyalty, respect is what we build everything on and it starts there. When this staff comes together, they either played for me, coached with me – four of those guys would have been captains for me at Temple University back in the ‘80s. Clyde Christensen was on my staff back then. We’ve got history – I think that’s very important because we’re all in it together. It only takes one guy to have a different agenda to split the whole thing up”, Arians said.
“We’re all in it together”. That’s right Buccaneer fans. Arians is going to bring a whole different demeanor to this team that hasn’t been seen since the super bowl days.
Fun times are ahead.