Jaguars mistake with Byron Leftwich makes Buccaneers future brighter

Byron Leftwich, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Byron Leftwich, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /
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The Buccaneers should get to keep Byron Leftwich after all.

Of all the potential departures from the Buccaneers this offseason, the loss of Byron Leftwich would be one of the most interesting.

Tom Brady is obviously the most important piece of the puzzle but let’s not pretend that he was the only reason why the offense found success in 2021. The offense was great before that point with a different offensive line and a different quarterback, so clearly there is a common factor here.

Leftwich may call a few too many runs on first down but he is still a great coach, and the Buccaneers are lucky that the Jaguars are incompetent.

The pairing between the Jags and their former first-round pick looked like a match made in Heaven. Leftwich is a young, offensive-oriented head coach that would have been a much better fit with Trevor Lawrence than Urban Meyer.

Jacksonville needed a slam dunk of a hire here to make the most of their generational talent at quarterback, and letting Leftwich leave Jacksonville without a job could hurt down the road.

Doug Pederson certainly isn’t a bad hire, though.

In any case, it looks more and more likely that the Bucs will keep Leftwich for at least one more cycle. Teams like the Saints and the Texans should at least make a run at Tampa’s OC, but should Byron even want to go there?

The best-case scenario for all parties is to wait one more season and let Leftwich take over after Bruce Arians. This will put the young head coach in a much better position than joining a team like the Jags, and the Bucs at least get to keep consistency in their offensive system for the next year.

The Jaguars messed up and kept Byron Leftwich from a job that he truly deserved, but it is nice that the Buccaneers have a chance to write this wrong sooner than later.

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