TAMPA — Lovie Smith wears a lot of headsets. Bucs head coach. Personnel chief with control over the 53-man roster. And now another one: defensive play-caller.Smith has decided to take over those duties from defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, a move he had been considering since going 2-14 in his first season in Tampa Bay last year. Smith declined to comment Thursday on how the Bucs plan to execute their defense, but his play-calling role was evident in Thursday's practice.He stood near midfield during the team's 11-on-11 period, giving the defensive play calls to linebackers coach Hardy Nickerson, who relayed them via a communicator to the field. Frazier, with practice script in hand, was not involved in the process.Frazier was criticized last season when the defense finished 25th overall in the 32-team league and allowed an average of 25.6 points per game, eighth most in the NFL. He will retain his title as defensive coordinator.Smith's move makes sense.As a defensive coordinator with the Rams and the architect of the Bears' Tampa 2 scheme for nine seasons, Smith always has been heavily involved with the defense. But last season, after offensive coordinator Jeff Tedford was put on an indefinite medical leave after a heart procedure, Smith was forced to devote more time to the offensive coaching staff.Just as former quarterbacks coach Marcus Arroyo was left to interpret Tedford's offense, Frazier had to implement a system that belonged to Smith. Sure, Frazier is familiar with the Tampa 2 scheme but not the sequence of play-calling and nuances that Smith has developed over the years.You could see this coming. Frazier was moved from the sideline to upstairs last season after the team's 56-14 loss at Atlanta during a nationally televised game in Week 3. (In January, the Bucs hired Falcons offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter for the same job in Tampa Bay.)Smith made no secret of his plan to be "more involved" with the defense in June, but at the time, he was not ready to commit to the role of play-caller."I'm just saying, when you come in initially, there's a lot of things as a head football coach you have to get into play," Smith said during the Bucs' offseason organized team activities. "We've gotten those things into play. My expertise, I'm a head coach because of what I've done on the defensive side. I've been very involved every year I've been a head coach."It's not the first time Smith has added defensive play-calling to his head coaching duties. After the Bears finished 28th (354.7 yards per game) in 2007 and 21st in 2008 (334.7 yards per game) under then-defensive coordinator Bob Babich, Smith started calling plays while Babich retained his title. Chicago improved slightly under Smith in 2009 to 17th in total defense and tied for 21st in points (23.4).The Bucs offense — with rookie quarterback Jameis Winston, rookie left tackle Donovan Smith and rookie guard Ali Marpet — should take time to develop. Until it does, the defense will have to do the heavy lifting. Right now, Smith believes he's the best person to lead it.That was the case when he took over the Bears defense many years ago. "For some reason, a lot of defensive coaches haven't done it," Smith said at the time. "But I think it's time to change some of that."After a 2-14 season, change might not be a bad thing.