July 29, 2008; Hempstead, NY, USA: New York Jets linebacker Vernon Gholston

Bryan Cox Will Bring the Right Attitude to Buccaneers Defense

Lost in some of the commotion of yesterday was the fact the Buccaneers also hired former linebacker Bryan Cox as a defensive assistant. Cox was a firebrand at linebacker over an 11-year NFL career. He was three times voted an All-Pro with the Miami Dolphins and spent last season as their pass-rushing coach.

The Dolphins had a very good defense last season. Despite their record they were a top 10 unit and their front seven was excellent. Cox was not let go because of performance issues, he was not retained because of a regime change. That works out brilliantly for the Buccaneers because now they get a dynamic young coach with a fiery streak.

Make no mistake about it though, Cox isn’t fiery in the Raheem Morris way. He doesn’t care if you like him, he cares that you do your job better. That’s exactly what the Buccaneers need.

There is talent on the Buccaneers defense, plenty of it. Now it just needs to mature and materialize. Players need to work on a better professional work ethic, better practice habits and just generally become more complete NFL players. That’s why the Bucs hired Greg Schiano, a task-master head coach who is very program-oriented.

Bryan Cox fits into that same mold.

A lot of people wanted to make a big deal out of Bill Sheridan coming aboard as D-Coordinator, that wasn’t a big deal. He’s going to have a role coaching this team but his title is deceptive in that he’s arguably the third in command of that Buccaneers defense.

Bryan Cox though is a fantastic hire, he’ll work one-on-one with linebackers and defensive ends, schooling them on technique (specifically with regard to pass-rushing). I can’t say enough good things about him, he’s going to make this defense a meaner, more disciplined unit.

That’s exactly what the Bucs need.

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