The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are expected to relieve Byron Leftwich of his offensive coordinator duties, according to Scott Reynolds of Pewter Report.
Reynolds, who has broken numerous Bucs stories throughout the years, published the report as the clock hit zeroes on Tampa Bay’s lopsided 31-14 defeat to the Dallas Cowboys Monday night at Raymond James Stadium. If proven true, it would be a fitting end for Leftwich’s one and only season as the sole proprietor of the Bucs’ offense.
Even with Tom Brady and a well-stocked cupboard of weapons, Leftwich’s fourth year — and first without mentor Bruce Arians directly overseeing him — never got off the ground. Major offensive line changes and injuries did prove to be obstacles, but the 43-year-old failed to adjust his scheme or playcalling to better fit the roster.
His struggles with creativity, play sequencing, and general situational awareness led to precipitous drop-offs in overall points scored (from more than 30 points per game the previous two years to just 18 PPG this season), red zone efficiency, and rushing effectiveness. The latter point was particularly damning, as the Bucs averaged easily the lowest yards per carry in the league and recorded the fewest rushing touchdowns from running backs, and they generated an embarrassing lack of explosive plays (just three runs of 20 yards or more).
When seeing other NFC playoff teams like the New York Giants and Seattle Seahawks doing far more with less, it only serves to magnify Leftwich’s ineptitude. Reynolds detailed in his report that the team apparently formulated a plan to dismiss him mid-season, but they decided it against it.
Potential replacements for Leftwich, if the scoop proves true, may include former Bucs OC and current University of Georgia playcaller Todd Monken, as well as Alabama OC Bill O’Brien and former Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich.