For some reason over the past week we’ve begun to hear some murmurs from fans that they aren’t exactly in love with Buccaneers head coach Greg Schiano. Also, Leo took the time to discuss how long Schiano has to turn the Bucs around. It got me to thinking, if Schiano is on the hot seat already, who else is feeling the heat themselves.
Mark Dominik – This will be Dominik’s fifth season in charge of Buccaneer personnel. In this time he’s led the Bucs to a measly 24-40 record, however he’s seemingly made the team better each and every offseason is recent history. Firing a GM is a move that often happens when you have no where else to look. In his time in charge, Dominik has gone through two head coaches, three offensive coordinators, and two defensive coordinators. At some point, Dominik has to get the finger pointed at him. I am one of the biggest Dominik supporters, and I’ll argue that all a GM can really do is get the best players available, which he has consistently done, and then it’s up to everyone else to make it work. But you can only use that argument so long. If the Bucs finish at the bottom of the South again, I’m afraid Dominik is in real trouble.
Greg Schiano – Leo’s post goes into much more detail, so I’ll keep it short. Schiano has only had one season, and the expectations have grown, but if Raheem got three seasons, Schiano has to get at least that many. The only way I can really see Schiano being in a really bad spot is if the Bucs win four or fewer games this season. The fact is, the seat of a head coach in the NFL is always scorching, but when Greg was hired, I don’t think anyone expected immediate success, therefore right now, he shouldn’t be looking for a new residence anytime soon.
Josh Freeman – The fifth year quarterback is coming into his first contract year as an NFL QB. He’s also trying to answer questions about inconsistency. So this is a huge year for the Bucs signal caller. Like head coaches, QB’s are always under fire, but in the case of #5, he’s under a blazing inferno this year. IF Josh doesn’t step up his game significantly this year, he’ll be playing, or watching, from someone else’s sideline. Freeman has made it clear that he knows the time is now if he wants to stay in Tampa. He can’t use the inexperience or lack of weapons cards anymore, it’s put up or shut up time.
Mike Sullivan – The Buccaneers offensive coordinator position has been a revolving door for a long time. With Bill Muir as the only guy to hold the job for more than three consecutive seasons in the past two decades, Sully’s seat is always going to resonate a little heat. But his showing last year and the fact that Freeman’s worth is such a question mark, Sullivan would have to really have a miserable year to not have the same position this time next year. He has the weapons, he has the offensive line, and he’s got a 6’6″ 240 pound shield at QB to deflect any criticism coming his way.
Bill Sheridan – Sheridan got a huge pass this offseason as he was spared despite being the head man of one of the worst pass defenses in the history of the league. He was able to lead his group to the #1 ranking in rush defense, but many believe that was because the Bucs were so miserable defending the pass. GM Mark Dominik did everything he could to rebuild the secondary and put Sheridan in a place to succeed. He’s now got the best CB in the league, multiple first round picks on the defensive line, and one of the richest safety in league history. The only thing going for Sheridan is that it’s almost impossible for the defense to be as bad as it was a year ago. His unit must improve, and in a big way.