Bill Sheridan had only one season as the New York Giants Defensive Coordinator before he was axed in early 2010. In that one season, Sheridan’s Giants defense allowed a record 40+ points in 5 of their last 11 games. The result was the Giants also losing 8 of those 11 games which prompted his firing. Sheridan joined the Miami Dolphins as a Line Backers coach in 2011, a position he held with the Giants from 2005-2008. The Dolphins linebackers did have a solid overall showing last season, but Sheridan’s murky track record does not instill confidence if you are a Bucs fan.
The good news is this really isn’t his defense. Coach Greg Schiano and Butch Davis will be the true defensive minds and Sheridan is likely to serve as a middle man with little direct impact. His reported contract which extends for only two seasons with the Buccaneers only validates he is on a very thin leash and will have to tow the line. He will push the paper work and run the meetings under a directive from the top and is here to lessen the managerial role coach Schiano will be pressed with. At worst, he doesn’t pan out as a glorified assistant with a coordinator title. At best, he uses the opportunity to correct past mistakes and build the trust of coach Schiano and Butch Davis. Think of this hire as a parolee who must prove to his parole officers he is ready to take full responsibility for himself. While he isn’t the best hire, there will be very little damage he can cause to an already struggling defense. We all know exactly will carry the burden of this team’s performance defensively and where the “Buc” stops.
Also of note is the team has hired pass rush specialist coach Bryan Cox as a defensive assistant to Bill Sheridan. Cox spent last season in Miami with Sheridan and spent most of his coaching career following Eric Mangini. Cox is a much more exciting prospect, having won Super Bowl XXXVI with the Patriots and was a three time Pro Bowl selection. He is young enough to relate to the Buccaneers young defensive linemen yet seasoned enough to command their respect. He understands the tricks of the trade and was very Warren Sapp like during his career.