10:55am: According to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (via Twitter), McDermott’s interview with the Buccaneers will take place on Saturday.
8:14am: Dirk Koetter may be the odds-on favorite to replace Lovie Smith as the head coach in Tampa Bay, but the Buccaneers intend to look beyond their own offensive coordinator as they consider their options. According to Peter Schrager of FOX Sports (Twitter link), the Bucs will interview Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott this weekend.
The Buccaneers will have to get their meeting with McDermott in by Sunday, since the Carolina assistant is eligible to interview during the team’s bye week, but not during the week leading up to its divisional playoff game. McDermott is expected to interview with the Browns as well, on Sunday, and has been cited as a potential candidate for the Giants’ and Eagles’ jobs too, though, it’s not clear if either NFC East team has set up a formal interview.
Speaking of the Eagles, McDermott’s time in Philadelphia – he spent more than a decade with the team from 1999 to 2010, in various roles – likely contributed to him landing on Tampa Bay’s radar. Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht also worked for the Eagles during McDermott’s stint there, with Licht holding multiple player personnel jobs in Philadelphia from 2006 to 2008.
Of course, McDermott’s work in Carolina over the last few years, and particularly this season, probably garnered the Bucs’ interest as well. Under his guidance, the Panthers gave up only 322.9 yards per game in 2015, good for sixth in the league. The front seven was particularly successful, surrendering just 88.4 rushing yards per contest to opposing teams.
Before the Bucs speak to McDermott, they’ll sit down today with Cardinals offensive coordinator Harold Goodwin to discuss their head coaching vacancy, according to Josina Anderson of ESPN.com (via Twitter).
Like McDermott, Goodwin is eligible to speak to teams this week since his club has a bye. And like McDermott, Goodwin has some history with Licht — the Tampa Bay GM spent the 2013 season as Arizona’s vice president of player personnel, during Goodwin’s first season as the club’s offensive coordinator.
Goodwin’s unit in Arizona was one of the NFL’s most potent offenses in 2015, leading the league in yards per game (408.3) and ranking second in points per contest (30.6). After ranking 23rd in offensive DVOA in 2014, the club finished fourth this season, per Football Outsiders.
Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.