During a recent interview with NFL AM on the NFL Network, Buccaneers All-Pro DT Gerald McCoy discussed Tampa Bay’s new defense under head coach Lovie Smith.
Apparently, it’s going to look very familiar.
“He’s bringing back the old, traditional Tampa 2, [from] when Tampa’s defense was at the top of the league. It’s always been successful when ran the right way and all the right pieces have been put in place. [Lovie Smith] was a part of when it was first brought to the NFL, so it’s really the old, traditional style. You know, it it’s played right and executed right, then there’s gonna be some huge battles with our defenses versus [the NFC South].”
In that same interview, McCoy discussed how excited the Bucs are to open the season against the NFC South champion Carolina Panthers, and if the team has what it takes to take the next step and become a winning football team again.
“Definitely, man. You’ve never seen a good team in history who were not a close-knit team…who people talked about and said ‘aww, they’re not that close, they just knew how to win together.’ This team, with the short three weeks we’ve been together, you can already see us growing together and us coming together as a team. And our leader, Lovie Smith, he’s definitely the ultimate professional. And what hasn’t he experienced? He’s won as a position coach. He’s won as a coordinator, and he’s won as a head coach. He knows exactly what it takes to get us where we want to be.”
Strong words from McCoy, who is the unquestioned leader of the Buccaneers locker room. It is definitely good to see the team coming together already, and it should pay dividends when training camp rolls around.
As far as the Tampa 2 comments, the Tampa Bay area should be very familiar with what the Bucs’ defense will look like this upcoming season. It seems as if Lovie Smith is implementing the same system that Tony Dungy and Monte Kiffin utilized to resurrect the Buccaneers in the mid-to-late 90’s, and the one that Kiffin used to win Super Bowl XXXVII in January of 2003.