The news of Raheem Morris’ firing is still fresh, as of this writing the press conference hasn’t even occurred, but Bucs fans have already started to think about who the next head coach may be.
That’s natural, a coaching search is always an interesting time full of opinions and hope, and ultimately even a little bit of disappointment. Everyone has a favorite, and only one guy can get the job. But as the Buccaneers embark on their coaching search there are a few basic things that fans need to remember, namely that the Glazers aren’t likely to drop a lot of coin on whoever they hire. Chances are the Bucs will not be going after the top-tier names.
That’s not what Bucs fans want to hear but you also need to keep in mind that a lot of the big name guys aren’t going to want to come to Tampa. That’s not to say it isn’t an attractive job. Frankly all that talk about which jobs are most attractive is overblown anyways. There are only 32 such jobs in the entire world, very few coaches have the luxury of being choosy. But whoever the Bucs hire needs to be amenable to working with a GM. And he will probably need to come cheap.
Mark Dominik isn’t going anywhere, he’s a talented young GM who is already well into an organizational plan to get younger and build from the ground. Any head coach that the Bucs consider is going to have to buy into that. The next head coach in Tampa isn’t going to get to call his own shots, he doesn’t get to buy his own groceries, he needs to be willing to work in the system and under Mark Dominik or else he’s not going to be a good fit.
That eliminates a good portion of the field, most notably Bill Cowher, who would be far too expensive for the Glazers anyway.
No, the Bucs need a coach that will be both capable of working within the parameters that Mark Dominik has established in addition to being relatively cheap.
Trust me on this, the Glazers aren’t about to spend big money on a coach anytime soon. They got burned on Jon Gruden, their financial interests aren’t doing as well as they were in the past and getting an inexpensive coach ensures that he will be more likely to fall in step with Dominik and the front office.
Look for the Bucs to kick the tires on a few experienced coaches before ultimately deciding on a younger assistant coach with a lot of promise. Don’t be surprised if the new guy’s resume reads a lot like Raheem Morris’.
What I don’t see Tampa doing is giving a coach four or five million dollars per year. That’s what Jeff Fisher or Bill Cowher would cost, it’s what it would take to get a big name college coach, it’s just not likely to happen.
And that frugality could go either way, it could be beneficial as it will ensure you get a coach that is hungry and eager to prove himself. Or it may result in getting a less talented coach, one who will cause us to have this discussion once again in another three years.
Only time will tell, but in the meantime don’t expect the Bucs to be big spenders in their coaching search.