TAMPA — The Bucs introduced Bruce Arians as their new head coach on Thursday in a news conference at One Buc Place, where he covered a variety of topics, from the reason he emerged from retirement, how far the Bucs are from winning, his coaching staff and his relationship with quarterback Jameis Winston.
Here are five things we learned from Arians' introductory presser:
He believes the Bucs aren’t far from winning
He thinks turning around the Bucs will be an easier job than the one he had in Arizona, where he took a 5-11 team and made them 10-6 in his first year. He didn't inherit a quarterback like Winston, he said. "There is was a little further behind." One of Arians' best quotes of the day: "I think we have the core here to win quickly. I'm not about building. I'm about reloading."
It took a perfect storm for him to get back in coaching
Arians admitted he had an itch, but said it took a perfect storm to get him back into coaching. His connection to general manager Jason Licht was big, he connected with the Glazer family, believes he has a good high-upside quarterback with Jameis Winston and many members of his former staffs became available. "The excitement kept building … and then the staff I wanted was available."
He loves Jameis Winston
Arians said goes into the job knowing he has a bevy of offensive weapons, and knows he has some work to do on building a stouter defense, but he said winning comes down to the quarterback and he believes he has a good one in Winston. "I want him to relax and play the game. Talent is no issue. It's just becoming a little bit smarter. … He's going to be coached as well as he's ever been and more prepared than he's ever been mentally and fundamentally. … It's his team."
His staff is immensely important to him
Arians' coaching staff includes some who were with him when he was the head coach at Temple in the 1980s and also some up-and-coming coaches who he believes will quickly be head coaches. As a longtime assistant, he values his staff, and often promotes them for openings whether they are young or old.
He plans on running two practices
An idea he brought to Arizona, and when organized team activities begin, Arians said he will run two separate practices: One that will have the veterans preparing and another for young players so they will have a chance to work their way into playing time. Arians said the only way to see which players are improving is to give them reps and he plans to do that every week. "You can't find a diamond in the rough if he's on the sideline watching."
Contact Eduardo A. Encina at [email protected] Follow @EddieInTheYard.