With Richard Mann on his way out as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers receivers coach, who could the team being eying as a possible replacement? One name that could find it’s way to the top of the teams’ short list, of candidates’ to replace Mann, is Keenan McCardell. Who played for the Bucs for two seasons from 2002 – 2003 in which he helped guide the team, to its only Superbowl appearance and the subsequent hoisting of the Lombardi trophy.
McCardell who is participating in the 2010 East West Shrine Game as the receivers coach for the West team, under head coach Marty Schottenheimer, got his first foray into coaching last season with the New York Giants as he enrolled in the Bill Walsh Minority Coaching Fellowship, a NFL program that provides minority coaches with the opportunity to work at training camps. According to published reports, McCardell had expressed an interest in the coaching profession back when he was playing under current Giants head coach Tom Coughlin in Jacksonville.
McCardell, a consummate veteran played for five teams (Browns, Jaguars, Buccaneers, Chargers and Redskins) in a career that spanned 16-years. He was originally drafted by the Washington Redskins in the 12th round with the 326th pick in 1991 out of UNLV.
He started 168 games out of the 209 he played, ranks 13th all-time in career receptions with 883 and ranks 22nd in all time receiving yards’ with 11,373. He averaged 12.9 yards per reception and finished his career with 63 receiving touchdowns.
As a player McCardell wasn’t overtly gifted physically or blessed with an abundance of raw natural athletic ability or blazing speed like other more high profile receivers of his day. However, he became a solid route runner and student of the game by studying the nuances and the tiny intricacies of his position. His professional workmen like approach to the game, helped catapult his career in the NFL as a steady, reliable veteran receiver who became known as a gamer around the league.
Whether the team would approach McCardell about its vacancy is another question all together. Considering the way they parted ways in 2004 after a lengthy contract dispute ended when the team traded him to the Chargers for 3rd and 5th rounds picks.
But based solely on his playing accomplishments and the way the Giants young receivers preformed in 2009, it could ultimately speak volumes as to the kind of impact McCardell could make as a full time receivers coach in the NFL.