Thursday, April 26, 2018
Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Tampa Bay Bucs turn to older, experienced coaching candidates

TAMPA — It became apparent Sunday that the Bucs plan to interview the hottest NFL head coaching candidates of the year.

That is, if the year were 2006.

Though vowing to keep an open mind, the Bucs seemed to be zeroing in on four of the league's veteran ex-head coaches, each age 55 or older.

Former Vikings head coach Brad Childress, 55, will interview with the Bucs today. The Glazer family, which owns the team, also plans to meet with former Cowboys head coach and current Texans defensive coordinator Wade Phillips, 64, in Houston on Friday.

According to multiple reports, 68-year-old Marty Schottenheimer, who last coached in the league in 2006, is also on the Bucs' radar, along with Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer, 55.

The Bucs interviewed former Packers and Texas A&M coach Mike Sherman in Texas on Wednesday.

In fact, the only known candidate the Bucs have already interviewed with no previous head coaching experience is Titans defensive coordinator Jerry Gray, 49, who would satisfy the Rooney Rule requirements that a minority be interviewed.

A week after firing 35-year-old Raheem Morris after three seasons, it's beginning to look like the Bucs are focusing on a gray-haired former NFL head coach.

The Texans have granted permission for the Bucs to interview Phillips, who just returned to the sideline after missing two weeks for kidney and gallbladder surgery. The Texans play at Baltimore in a division playoff game next Sunday. That's why Phillips' interview will take place Friday in Houston.

"I'm gratified somebody noticed," Phillips told the Houston Chronicle. "I don't want to leave Houston, but I'd like a chance to be a head coach again."

In his first season with the Texans, Phillips took them from 30th in the NFL in total defense to second (281 yards per game). The Texans have set a single-season record for sacks (41) and rank 10th in takeaways (26).

Phillips is 82-61 as head coach of the Broncos, Bills and Cowboys and interim coach of the Falcons and Saints. He believes that success should give him another shot as a head coach.

"If you look at my record and you look at all the people they're talking about now, and my record is better than most everyone they're talking about, as a head coach,'' he said.

A Phillips hire could mean changes on defensive personnel. He runs a 3-4 defensive alignment while the Bucs have players for a Tampa 2, 4-2 scheme.

Childress, 55, coached the Vikings from 2006-10, winning two NFC North titles. His overall record was 39-35 before he was fired after a 3-7 start in 2010.

An offensive play-caller, Childress had trouble developing quarterback Tarvaris Jackson and was responsible for luring quarterback Brett Favre out of retirement twice.

In 2009, the Vikings went 12-4 and reached the NFC title game, losing to the eventual Super Bowl champion Saints. NFL.com reported that Childress may be interviewing for offensive coordinator and speculated that Sherman will be hired by the Bucs.

Zimmer was ranked as the No. 2 defensive coordinator in the league by Pro Football Weekly. Since coming to the Bengals four years ago, the defense has ranked 12th (2008), fourth (2009), 15th (2010), and seventh (2011).

Schottenheimer led the Virginia Destroyers of the United Football League to a 3-1 record in a shortened season as head coach and general manager. He last coached in the NFL in 2006, getting fired by the Chargers after a 14-2 regular season and second-round playoff loss. Schottenheimer's career record is 200-126-1.

 
Comments
Bucs fill a need at running back on the first day of the draft…but it’s Charles Sims, who agrees to a 1-year deal

Bucs fill a need at running back on the first day of the draft…but it’s Charles Sims, who agrees to a 1-year deal

The Bucs landed a running back on the first day of the NFL draft.It wasn't Saquon Barkley or Sony Michel or Derrius Guice. Not just yet, anyway.Tampa Bay reached an agreement on a one-year contract with Charles Sims.The 27-year-old Sims was a third-r...
Updated: 8 hours ago
After Twitter backlash, Jeff Garcia won’t announce any Bucs draft picks

After Twitter backlash, Jeff Garcia won’t announce any Bucs draft picks

The Bucs still don't have a third-round draft pick this weekend, but if they do trade for one, former Tampa Bay Bucs quarterback Jeff Garcia won't be the one to announce it.It's been a rough few days for Garcia, who played for the Bucs in 2007-08, ma...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: John Clayton breaks down the NFL draft

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: John Clayton breaks down the NFL draft

It's NFL draft day. John Clayton joins Rick Stroud to talk about how many quarterbacks will go early and who the Bucs will take with the seventh overall pick, considering their obvious needs on defense.Plus, the Lightning will face the Boston Br...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Bucs draft scenarios: Would this guy be their lucky pick at No. 7?

Bucs draft scenarios: Would this guy be their lucky pick at No. 7?

TAMPA – This is the Rubiks Cube of NFL drafts. It can be twisted and turned it in any direction. Not many know how everything will line up.For the Bucs, the puzzle is simple.  Since they have the No. 7 overall pick, they need four quarterb...
Published: 04/25/18
Updated: 04/26/18
Mock draft consensus: Who the experts have Bucs taking at No. 7

Mock draft consensus: Who the experts have Bucs taking at No. 7

We've linked to a lot of mock drafts over the last four months.We went back and assembled mocks from 40 different NFL writers we've linked to — this isn't the most recent for some of these who are in Mock 9.0 mode, but it's meant as an unscient...
Published: 04/25/18
Updated: 04/26/18
NFL draft: How the Bucs can grab hold of the NFC South

NFL draft: How the Bucs can grab hold of the NFC South

TAMPA — From the department of the weird, also known as Bucs marketing genius — also known as if it bombs, we can blame Ed Glazer — the Bucs will use a … parrot to announce their fourth-round pick in the NFL Draft, which kicks...
Published: 04/25/18
Q&A with Bucs tackle Donovan Smith: On bowling, charity work, team expectations

Q&A with Bucs tackle Donovan Smith: On bowling, charity work, team expectations

Bucs tackle Donovan Smith has a big season ahead, going into a contract year as part of a reshuffled offensive line. Still only 24, he has started all 48 games in his three NFL seasons, and has made it a priority in the offseason to be more active in...
Published: 04/25/18
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Who will the Bucs take with the No. 7 pick?

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Who will the Bucs take with the No. 7 pick?

Rick Stroud answers your NFL draft questions in this mailbag segment, including who the Bucs might take with the seventh overall pick, which running backs they might be looking at, whether Taven Bryan could slip to them in the second r...
Published: 04/25/18
NFL Draft: Date, time, TV schedule and draft order for the April 26-28 draft

NFL Draft: Date, time, TV schedule and draft order for the April 26-28 draft

The NFL Draft starts Thursday from Arlington, Texas, with coverage of the first round beginning at 8 p.m. ET. Here's a look at the broadcast schedule for all three days and the draft order for every round: Schedule (all times Eastern) Thursday, Ap...
Updated: 6 hours ago
Five options if the Bucs want to trade down from No. 7

Five options if the Bucs want to trade down from No. 7

For months, NFL fans have wondered what the Bucs might do with the No. 7 pick in Thursday's draft, producing a wide range of answers, each with passionate support from some of their fans.But as draft nears, and as the interest level in a talented gro...
Published: 04/24/18