One of the biggest discussion points since the hiring of new head coach Lovie Smith was about the balance of power between the new head coach and the front office in Tampa Bay. Early reports indicated that Lovie Smith would have power over personnel decisions with the Buccaneers, and that a GM would not have the full compliment of GM responsibilities as a result.
According to Jay Glazer of Fox Sports, those reports were either untrue or blown out of proportion.
Btw, the Bucs job Licht has been tabbed for is a “real” GM job as he has control of the draft & other personnel decisions.
— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) January 21, 2014
And according to our friend Gil Arcia over at The Bay Cave, this really isn’t news at all.
What Jay Glazer just reported, about it being a ‘real’ GM job, is not news. Smith himself said he handles the final 53, draft/others is GM.
— Gil Arcia (@GilArciaTBC) January 21, 2014
So what power does Lovie Smith has that prompted these reports? It seems as though Smith’s one contractual job in the front office is to be involved in cutdown day, meaning he has final say on the 53-man roster. Rather than being involved in day-to-day operations in the front office, Smith will simply work with Licht to figure out whether to keep a promising young linebacker who plays special teams or a veteran wide receiver who would add depth on offense.
This is certainly a logical balance of power, although the Coach/GM relationship must be strong for continued success, regardless of roles or contractual clauses. If Licht and Smith work well together, and Licht knows how to get the right players in place for Smith to use properly, the actual role of each man matters very little.