Surfacing as a candidate shortly after Byron Leftwich‘s firing, the prospect of Todd Monken coming back to Tampa is moving closer to a reality. The Buccaneers plan to interview Monken for their offensive coordinator job next week, Jenna Laine of ESPN.com tweets.
Monken, who worked as Tampa Bay’s offensive coordinator under Dirk Koetter in the late 2010s, is currently Georgia’s OC. He has been in that position for the past three years. This will be an interesting interview, considering the same GM — Jason Licht — is on staff after he moved on from Koetter and Monken four years ago.
Serving as the Bucs’ OC for much of Jameis Winston‘s tenure, Monken generated some momentum late in that run. Despite the Bucs moving on in 2019, Monken interviewed for five NFL jobs — including head coaching positions — that offseason. Ending up in Cleveland as Freddie Kitchens‘ OC, Monken went one-and-done after that disappointing Browns season but landed on his feet at Georgia. The Bulldogs have won back-to-back national championships, the second of which via a historic 65-7 rout of TCU.
The Bucs ranked in the top 10 in total offense in both 2017 and ’18, the latter year producing a third-place finish for the team’s offense. This still led Koetter and Monken out, but the latter was the primary play-caller when Ryan Fitzpatrick averaged 9.6 yards per attempt — a mark that still ranks in the top 10 for a season (an abbreviated one, as Fitz started seven games) in NFL history — for a squad that rostered an intriguing mix of wideouts and tight ends. While Koetter called plays for a point in 2018, Monken spent most of that season doing so. Kitchens was at the controls for the 2019 Browns.
Georgia has ranked as a top-10 offense nationally in each of the past two seasons, though the Bulldogs’ defense has generated more attention from NFL scouts. He enjoys a pretty nice gig for the SEC powerhouse, however, coaching sought-after recruits and, per the Tampa Bay Times’ Rick Stroud (on Twitter), earning the highest salary among college assistants ($2.01MM). Monken, 56, has spent most of his career in the college ranks. Though, he also coached the Jaguars’ wide receivers from 2007-10. Only the Bucs have reached out to Monken so far. Excepting Keenan McCardell, Tampa Bay has identified a host of young position coaches for its role. Here is where that search stands thus far:
- Jim Bob Cooter, passing-game coordinator (Jaguars): Interviewed 1/26
- Pep Hamilton, offensive coordinator (Texans): Declined interview request
- Klint Kubiak, quarterbacks coach (Broncos): Interviewed 1/26
- Keenan McCardell, wide receivers coach (Vikings): Interviewed 1/26
- Todd Monken, offensive coordinator (Georgia): To interview
- Dan Pitcher, quarterbacks coach (Bengals): Interviewed 1/27
- Shea Tierney, quarterbacks coach (Giants): To interview