Expect the Bucs to have a quick turnaround under Bruce Arians in his first season.
That’s the prediction of quarterback Carson Palmer, who saw it happen up close with the Cardinals.
Like the Bucs, Arizona was coming off a 5-11 record when Arians took over 2013. He proceeded to go 10-6, 11-5 (losing to Carolina in the NFC wildcard) and 13-3, winning the NFC West (before losing to the Panthers in the conference championship game).
“I think it’s a quick turnaround. I think it happens this year,’’ Palmer said on NFL Live at the Super Bowl in Atlanta. “I think they’re a winning team this year. I think they win at least nine games.’’
Palmer believes that Arians will have the biggest impact on quarterback Jameis Winston, who is in the fifth and final year of his rookie contract.
“I love him and Jameis Winston together,’’ Palmer said. “Bruce’s offense with Jameis’ arm and his capability of delivering the ball accurately 30 yards downfield, 40 yards downfield. You don’t throw slants in Bruce’s offense. You don’t have to be real accurate underneath. You have to be accurate throwing comebacks, digs over linebacker’s heads. The big post. The bang eight post. Jameis can do all that. In Bruce’s system, when you’ve got DeSean Jackson, when you’ve got Mike Evans, you got some players on defense, he’ll turn that thing around quick.’’
Palmer said the biggest thing he’s excited about is that Arians, who retired following the 2017 season, is healthy enough to return to coaching at age 67.
“But I know he’s excited and I think the thing that I was most excited about that he took the job was that he took the job, that he was healthy enough,’’ Palmer said. “He had some health issues at the end of his career with the Cardinals. Just knowing that he’s healthy enough to endure at his age what comes with being the head coach of an organization. That’s a lot of pressure, that’s a lot of heat. He’s healthy enough to do it, which is the best thing.’’