Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 5 Players Who Will Be Impacted By Lovie Smith Hire
5 Players To Watch Following Lovie Smith Hire
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers confirmed their deal to hire Lovie Smith as their next head coach Thursday morning. The deal, which is still being finalized, would reportedly pay Smith nearly $5 million over the next four years, and it's a deal worth every single penny.
Everywhere Smith has gone, he has been a part of transforming that team's defense. His resume includes stints with the St.Louis Rams during their heyday, as well as time in Tampa from 1996-2000 as a linebacker coach. He also took the Chicago Bears to the Super Bowl in 2006.
The hiring of Smith as coach brings pedigree and credibility to the Bucs, as they look to move past a dismal season full of headlines and player-coach turmoil. Though the team has not yet confirmed who the offensive and defensive coordinators will be, reports say the Bucs and Smith will go with former University Of Caliifornia coach Jeff Tedford for offensive coordinator, while Rod Marinelli and Leslie Frazier are the leading candidates for defensive coordinator.
With the new regime almost set, there may be some changes. Some players may not fit the mold and therefore may not be with the team as the coaches make their decisions. With that said, Smith won't have to do much retooling. This team is loaded at some key positions and the team owns a top-10 draft pick in the 2014 NFL Draft, but that may all change once the new staff in in place. Here are five players that will likely be impacted by the new hire.
5. Mason Foster
Lovie Smith's work as a linebackers coach will definitely benefit Mason Foster. Foster is heading into his fourth year as a Buc, and is coming off a career year in which he had two interceptions and 92 tackles. Foster is just 24 and has stayed healthy every year for a Bucs defense that needs all the help it can get. He should improve upon his numbers under Lovie's guidance.
4. Gerald McCoy
Gerald McCoy is practically the only defensive pick that worked out for former general manager Mark Dominik. McCoy, who has had nagging injuries, had a stellar year in 2013. After playing just six games in 2011, McCoy played every game this season, recording nine sacks -- a career high -- and 50 tackles. McCoy will benefit from the Tampa 2 change that's sure to follow, a move that could send him back to the Pro Bowl.
3. Darrelle Revis
Darrelle Revis may be the franchise corner the previous regime was looking for, but it may not work for the incoming group. While Revis stayed healthy and proved that he put his knee trouble behind him, he also commands a lot of money. Revis is set to receive nearly 18 million next season, an astronomical figure for one cog in the defense. Whether the new group wants to spend all that money on one player is unclear, but it's very clear that Revis went on the offensive today with this tweet.
I'm excited about the future for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Heard some great things about Lovie Smith & can't wait to finally meet him.— Darrelle Revis (@Revis24) January 2, 2014
2. Mike Glennon
Mike Glennon stepped in admirably this season, helping Tampa get back on track, but will it be enough to impress the incoming coaches? It just might be. Glennon stands a towering 6-foot-6 and has a solid arm. In Glennon's 13 games as a starter, the rookie compiled 2,608 yards throwing 19 touchdowns and just nine interceptions.
This could go either way, but I don't see the Bucs taking a quarterback with their first-round pick or anything north of the third round, therefore, Glennon may actually hold onto his job heading into 2014.
1. Lavonte David
No other player will be impacted more than 23-year-old linebacker Lavonte David. As the crux of the Bucs linebacker core, David is already a force on defense. He was the anchor behind a Bucs defense that allowed just 73 rushing yards per game in November. Lavonte had career highs with five interceptions 144 tackles and eight sacks. David was a Pro Bowl snub this season but look for him to be a lock next year with Lovie Smith mentoring him.