Bucs' offseason overhaul includes team physicians
While much has been made of the Bucs' offseason overhaul, with new coach Lovie Smith and general manager Jason Licht already signing 23 new players and cutting key veterans from last year's team, the organization has been busy with changes behind the scenes as well.
Tampa Bay will have a new lineup of team physicians and surgeons for 2014, with John Zvijac, the team's head orthopedic surgeon for the previous 16 seasons, not returning. Zvijac has been replaced by Chuck Nofsinger, who has worked as a team physician at USF since 2006 and an assistant professor and director in the university's College of Medicine Orthopedic.
Also gone from last year's team, according to the Bucs' official site, are Kevin Elder, a team physician for the past four years, and Chet Janecki, who was a consultant on the Bucs' Super Bowl team in 2002. Joining the team as an orthopedic surgeon is David Leffers, a USF team physician since 1984, and Seth Gasser, who works at Florida Orthopaedic Institute and has worked as a team physician with the Lightning, Storm and Rowdies, as well as USF.
Leffers, who played guard at Vanderbilt and was drafted by the Raiders in 1973, is the department chair for USF's Health Physicians Group and has worked with most of the area's sports teams, including the Lightning, Storm, Mutiny, Rowdies and others.
A Bucs spokesman said Wednesday that the offseason changes have nothing to do with the team's problems last fall with a MRSA infection that sidelined kicker Lawrence Tynes and guard Carl Nicks and made national headlines.
These staff changes are in addition to the change made at head trainer, where Todd Toriscelli left after 17 years in February to become the Titans' director of sports medicine. The Bucs have since hired Bobby Slater, who has 15 years of NFL experience and worked with the Bears when Smith was the head coach there.