Buccaneers Fire Lovie Smith

9:40pm: Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times (on Twitter) hears that offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter will be a candidate for the head coaching job.

Former Buccaneers GM Mark Dominik (on Twitter) expects the club to name Koetter as its new head coach within the week, though he anticipates that they will still interview a few other candidates. Koetter has been mentioned as a possible candidate for the Dolphins job.

9:24pm: The Buccaneers announced that they have fired coach Lovie Smith. The team issued a press release containing a short statement from Buccaneers Co-Chairman Joel Glazer:

After careful consideration, we informed Lovie that we have decided to make a change. I want to thank Lovie for his hard work and dedication to the Buccaneers during his time here. This decision was difficult on a variety of levels. I am disappointed that we were not more successful these past few seasons, but we are committed to doing what is necessary to give our fans the winning team they deserve. As we move forward, General Manager Jason Licht will oversee the process for finding our next head coach.” Lovie Smith (vertical)

[RELATED: PFR’s 2016 Head Coaching Tracker]

The news comes out of left field as there has been no chatter about Tampa Bay making a coaching change in recent weeks. Smith, 57, agreed to become the Bucs head coach two years ago after the team canned Greg Schiano. In fact, tomorrow marked the exact two year anniversary of Smith’s introductory press conference.

Things have not exactly gone as planned for Smith and the Bucs over the last two seasons. In 2014, Tampa Bay finished a dismal 2-14, putting them in the NFL’s cellar. In 2015, they used their No. 1 overall pick on FSU quarterback Jameis Winston. Winston showed flashes of promise in his rookie campaign but Tampa Bay didn’t become a contender overnight. After a 6-10 finish, Buccaneers ownership has decided to go in another direction at head coach.

Now, the Buccaneers join the Browns, Dolphins, Giants, Eagles, 49ers, and Titans as clubs who are looking for a new head coach in 2016. Prominent coaches looking for a promising landing spot could do a whole lot worse than the Bucs. Tampa Bay features last year’s No. 1 overall choice at quarterback, a talented young wide receiver in Mike Evans, and the No. 9 overall choice in the 2016 draft.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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21 comments on “Buccaneers Fire Lovie Smith

  1. Bazingaa

    Seriously? I don’t get it….

  2. Charles miller

    BS. That’s all I got to say

  3. Jorge

    Bucs front office is full of idiots. He has a solid baseline now and would bring more wins and playoff appearances in the future. He didn’t get the chance he deserves. This move was very premature.

  4. Gogerty

    Irish could use a new DC.

  5. Robert Grayson

    Clock management cost Tampa Bay as many as 3 losses this season. I guess I wasn’t the only one to notice.

  6. rycm131

    I’m tired of the racism in the NFL always be firing black coaches!

    • Nick Ottino

      im just going to assume this comment is a joke…

    • Toksoon

      8-24 enough said

  7. Smith may not be Hoodie, but he deserved more than this. He cleaned house in his first year and made big improvements in the 2nd year. What more do you want?

    There has to be more to this story. Anybody know? Did he lose the locker room?

  8. Under rated coach imo. Always has been. I don’t think anyone expected the Bucs to get more than 6 wins, especially with a rookie QB. Things were turning around in Tampa too. This is surprising.

  9. ZCosenza

    Doesn’t seem smart for them to have a 2nd year QB have to learn a whole other system

    • The Buc will have a PR disaster on their hands if they dont explain this better…..

      • Toksoon

        Sez who ? As a bucs fan I couldn’t wait for this.

    • Toksoon

      What new system? The oc will be the new hc so no offensive changes to the system

  10. cjh815

    How about lovie smith to Cowboys as ass def cord. Cowboys need new Qb Wr off line coachs and if they lose Henderson cb coach I love if they. Hire these as coachs
    Qb coach Brett Favre
    Wr Michael Irvin
    Off line coach Mathews
    Ass line coach munchak
    Lb Ray Lewis
    Cb Deion sanders
    S Charles Darren Woodson
    Olb Kevin green
    Pass rush – Charles Haley
    Love they add them to coaching staff

    • GeauxRangers

      This would be too good to be real life

  11. Toksoon

    Great move , the defense which was his specialty stunk – they got worse when he took over the play calling , this team was not prepared most games as evidence of leading the league in penalties . Not to mention all the retreads he brought in on defense, there was a reason Chicago let those players go .

  12. Strauss

    Remember Joe Walton!!!!!

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