In an article that appears on Yahoo Sports.com, the staff of Profootball Weekly criticize the Glazer’s, Raheem Morris and the entire franchise, for among other things the spending habits over the last four or five years, there decision to fire Jon Gruden, the decision to hire green behind the ears Raheem Morris and just the general dis-function that is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Of course, siting un-named league sources, to do most of the airing of the teams dirty laundry.
The way we hear it, though, mixed signals at the QB position have been the order of the day internally for the Bucs for a while now.
Word is new Bucs offensive coordinator Greg Olson — who replaced Jeff Jagodzinski shortly before the start of the season after Jagodzinski quickly proved to be an admittedly terrible hire who was in way over his head — had long believed that Leftwich was incapable of efficiently running the Bucs’ offense and felt the team needed to go in another direction.
Our sources tell us the quarterback Olson actually preferred to run the offense was Luke McCown(notes), who was traded because Buccaneers GM Mark Dominik said he could not afford to give backup reps to McCown and needed to get Freeman groomed. We hear Olsen absolutely loved McCown but was overruled by the three people who have the most authority in personnel moves at present — Dominik, Morris and coordinator of pro scouting and former Bucs QB Doug Williams, who jointly decided that Leftwich’s leadership was the key point in his favor.
“They had a statue back there and they knew it,” one league insider told PFW. “If you took every quarterback in the league, Josh Johnson might be in the bottom 10, and he was one of the starting 32 this week. They screwed it up. They just gave McCown $2.5 million to start, and now he is somewhere else.
“It’s a mess.”
Same goes for a once-proud defense that played well in Washington Sunday but entered Week Four ranked 31st against the run after having allowed the Giants to rush for 226 yards and control the ball for nearly 44 minutes in Week Three.
“Tampa took a defense that was working (when it was run by former defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin) and they changed it up,” said one source on the scene. “That’s what I don’t understand — Morris was the DB coach there, and the secondary is the problem. Tampa is usually in the top 10 in takeaways. They were (tied for) fifth in the league with 30 last year. Now they are one of the worst teams in the league.”
Morris is being questioned in league circles for many other reasons.
“Morris is not well-thought-of as a schemer, X’s and O’s coach,” said one insider who hinted that the Bucs’ beleaguered head coach was nearly fired by Kansas State for that reason before returning to the Bucs. “Morris is all hype. They thought he was a players’ coach and the next (Steelers head coach) Mike Tomlin, but he’s not nearly as football-smart or savvy as Tomlin and has made one bad decision after another.”
Added a veteran personnel director: “Ownership (the Glazer family) should be realizing they misevaluated the previous coach, and that Jon Gruden can coach after all. The ownership is not committed to the Bucs, and the money shows it. (Dominik) is just a puppet.”
Speaking of money, the Bucs have been widely criticized for their frugal spending habits, ranking last in the league the last four seasons in committed cash. Widespread speculation that the Glazers are much more committed to keeping their Manchester United soccer team in the black won’t go away any time soon. Source Yahoo Sports.com
There is no denying the team has cash flow problems, but if I’m not mistaken wasn’t it Olson who lobbied against starting Luke McCown against the Falcons in favor of Brian Griese last season. Now were supposed have drivel forced down are throats, that he was all of a sudden lobbing for the same guy he lobbied against.
Wasn’t the Tampa-2 defense also ran over, through and around late last season and part of the reason for the switch in schemes this year?
Seems it’s one contradiction after another these days, from the so called experts. One of the reasons the team tried to hire a veteran laden staff was to insulate Morris and provide guidance and a sounding board for the first time head coach, at the time of the hiring’s the team was lauded for there efforts in providing such a veteran staff, now it’s being turned into a negative to suit agendas.