Tuesday, August 14, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Jon Gruden humbled to enter Bucs' Ring of Honor with late owner Malcolm Glazer

Bucs owner Malcolm Glazer had the vision to trade for the young head coach with the visor and they made history in their first season by winning Super Bowl XXXVII.

Gruden still remembers the hot line to Raiders owner Al Davis ringing at his home in the middle of the night. The Bucs sent two first round picks, two second round picks and $8-million to Oakland in exchange for Gruden.

"It didn't put any pressure on me now,'' Gruden said. "Warren Sapp told me if you don't deliver a Super Bowl, we will kill you.

"You don't realize the compensation until the draft comes around. You miss the first and second round draft choices. And you really wish in hindsight we didn't have to give up anything. But it really made me work hard. It really gave me incentive to do the very best that I could for Mr. Glazer and the family that made that trade. And it was a lot to live up to. Maybe I never did but I'm not dead yet.''

Glazer and Gruden will be inducted into the team's Ring of Honor this season, 15 years after their greatest triumph in the Super Bowl against those same Raiders.

Glazer, who had been in declining health for a number of years after suffering two strokes, died in 2014 at age 85. He will be honored posthumously during a nationally televised Thursday night game Oct. 5 against the Patriots.

Gruden, 53, who served as the team's head coach from 2002-08 (going 57-55), will be inducted during halftime of the Bucs' Monday Night Football game that he will broadcast for ESPN on Dec. 18 against the Falcons.

"Jon Gruden is the reason I'm wearing this ring,'' said Bucs co-chairman Brian Glazer Wednesday. "He's also the reason my father was standing beside him holding the Lombardi Trophy and delivered on his promise to make the Buccaneers winners on and off the field.''

Wearing a red Bucs polo shirt and pulling the patented visor over his blonde hair, Gruden became emotional talking about his six seasons with the Bucs, reaching the playoffs in 2002, '05 and '07.

"I'm overwhelmed. I've very appreciative and humbled by this honor,'' Gruden said. "(Malcolm Glazer) had a vision, he had the guts, he had the courage to make this purchase and change the destiny of this franchise.

"When he called me in the middle of the night and made me a part of the organization, it was like a storybook opportunity for me to go home. … I'm a little choked up as you can see.''

Comments
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Tony Dungy to enter Bucs’ Ring of Honor

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Tony Dungy to enter Bucs’ Ring of Honor

With Tony Dungy at One Buc Place today for a news conference in advance of his induction into the Bucs' Ring of Honor, Rick Stroud recalls Dungy's tenure as the team's head coach.Dungy established a winning culture in Tampa Bay and led the ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Brent Grimes happy to be back, healthy at Bucs practice

Brent Grimes happy to be back, healthy at Bucs practice

Veteran cornerback Brent Grimes had returned to practice in a limited capacity Saturday, but Monday saw him back in 11-on-11 full-squad work for the first time in nearly two weeks."We want Brent Grimes out there. He's our best cover guy, so it's grea...
Published: 08/13/18

Madden 19 predictions: The Bucs are bad, the Browns are good and the world might be ending

You thought the Buccaneers’ playoff drought was going to end last season. Instead, they lost six of their first eight games and limped to a 5-11 finish.If only someone or something had warned you.Actually, something did.A video game.While every...
Published: 08/13/18
Even bigger: Bucs TE Antony Auclair up to 270 for 2nd NFL season

Even bigger: Bucs TE Antony Auclair up to 270 for 2nd NFL season

A year ago, when Antony Auclair made the Bucs' roster as an undrafted rookie, the Canadian import was already the largest tight end at 6-foot-6 and 256 pounds.That's even more the case now as he heads into his second season with the confidence that c...
Published: 08/13/18
Peyton Barber has edge on starting RB job over Ronald Jones

Peyton Barber has edge on starting RB job over Ronald Jones

It's still too early in the preseason to declare a starter at some positions, but Bucs coach Dirk Koetter took a step in that that direction Monday at running back.After an underwhelming performance by rookie Ronald Jones in the preseason opener at M...
Published: 08/13/18
Koetter on Bucs’ practice fight: ‘Big deal. I mean, it’s football’

Koetter on Bucs’ practice fight: ‘Big deal. I mean, it’s football’

One day after a video showed an extended fight at Jaguars practice, and two days before the Bucs start joint practices with the Titans, Bucs coach Dirk Koetter said he wasn't worried about a minor late-practice skirmish between players."We had a figh...
Published: 08/13/18
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Is Bucs’ QB depth the best in franchise history?

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Is Bucs’ QB depth the best in franchise history?

Do the Bucs have the best trio of quarterbacks they have ever had? What does Vernon Hargreaves' injury mean for the secondary? How did Tampa Bay's running backs fare in the preseason opener? Rick Stroud answers these questions and more on today'...
Published: 08/13/18
Alan Cross may not look like a typical NFL tight end, but there’s nothing he can’t do on the football field

Alan Cross may not look like a typical NFL tight end, but there’s nothing he can’t do on the football field

TAMPA — Alan Cross always has been the boy on the bubble. A linebacker in high school, he walked on to his college team, Memphis, as a long snapper. He had no scholarship offers. Hugh Freeze, then head coach at Arkansas State, told Cr...
Published: 08/12/18
Bucs claim cornerback De’Vante Harris from Saints

Bucs claim cornerback De’Vante Harris from Saints

The Bucs got help for their injury-depleted secondary on Sunday, claiming third-year cornerback De'Vante Harris off waivers from the Saints.Tampa Bay has veteran Brent Grimes just returning from injury and Vernon Hargreaves and Javien Elliott dealing...
Published: 08/12/18
Unheralded receivers stepped up for Bucs on game-winning drive

Unheralded receivers stepped up for Bucs on game-winning drive

TAMPA — The Bucs' come-from-behind finish Thursday night, going 67 yards with no time outs in the final two minutes to set up a game-winning field goal, would be impressive under most any circumstances.Add in the chaos of the end of a preseason...
Published: 08/12/18