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Jay Gruden could move into a full-time job on Tampa Bay Buccaneers staff

TAMPA — With the offseason just days old, the Bucs already are facing some coaching staff turnover.

The contracts of assistant head coach Larry Coyer and tight ends coach Bob Casullo expire this month, and a familiar member of the coaching staff is a strong candidate to replace one of them.

Jay Gruden, brother of coach Jon, could be installed soon as Casullo's successor, joining the staff full time after working in a part-time capacity since 2002. Jay Gruden has worked in an "offensive assistant" role but this move would make him a full-fledged position coach with expanded duties.

Gruden, 41, has split duties between the Bucs and the Orlando Predators of the Arena Football League. With the AFL calling off the 2009 season, he is in the market for a full-time gig.

The move could be the most definitive sign yet that Jon Gruden is not in jeopardy of losing his job after the Bucs' December collapse. Coaches in limbo typically can't make staffing changes.

DOUG WILLIAMS' FUTURE: The contract of personnel executive Doug Williams expires soon, leaving the Super Bowl-winning quarterback and former Buccaneer's future in doubt.

With so much upheaval on coaching staffs and in front offices around the league, he could be presented with the opportunity to go elsewhere. But his relationship with Jon Gruden likely will give the Bucs incentive to re-sign him.

Williams is among those who advocated signing of Antonio Bryant, the team's leading receiver, last spring.

A HOT COMMODITY: The Bucs may be in danger of losing newly-appointed defensive coordinator Raheem Morris, who is "on the radar" in the Broncos' coaching search. Denver's Rocky Mountain News reported the Broncos' interest Wednesday in response to Mike Shanahan's firing on Tuesday. Later Wednesday, owner Pat Bowlen said he expected to make a coaching hire before moving to hire a general manager.

Stephen F. Holder can be reached at sholder@sptimes.com or (813) 226-3377.

Jay Gruden could move into a full-time job on Tampa Bay Buccaneers staff 12/31/08 [Last modified: Friday, January 2, 2009 7:06pm]
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