Thursday, December 14, 2017
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Former Bucs assistant 'was shocked' at Lovie Smith's firing

Smith's exit shocks ex-Bucs assistant

TAMPA — Former Bucs assistant Larry Marmie said he thought the staff let coach Lovie Smith down, leading to his firing Wednesday.

"I was shocked," Marmie said of Smith's dismissal. "There's a lot of different ways to look at it, but I personally thought there had been significant improvement in some areas, looking at the way some of the young players on offense played. I know there were ups and downs on the defensive side. … I just thought that we'd probably be there another year, to see how much the improvement continued to happen."

Marmie, 73, spent the past two seasons coaching nickel defensive backs. He has known Smith, who hasn't commented publicly since his dismissal, since 1977 when he coached him at Tulsa, where Smith played linebacker.

"I can't speak for all the coaches, but I feel that we let Lovie down from a coaching standpoint," Marmie said. "I'm speaking for myself, but I feel like whatever my role was, I let him down. We go back a long way."

Greg Auman, Times staff writer

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