© St. Petersburg Times, published February 10, 2002
Jimmy Johnson is your man! He's right here in our state, not Florida, but the state of confusion. In December, during a Monday Night Football halftime interview with Al Michaels, I saw the rosy-cheeked, red-nosed J.J. with a smile from ear to ear. He's having too much fun! You know what they say about too much of anything ... not good.
With the proximity of the Keys a stone's throw from the Glazer household, meetings between the two should be quick and fruitful. J.J.'s coaching credentials alone speak volumes of his coaching credibility and after spending years with an owner the likes of Jerry Jones, the Glazer family should be child's play for him.
-- Jim Vosswinkel, St. Petersburg
Obviously, there is no one available outside the organization who would be an upgrade from Tony Dungy. The Bucs' best bet would be to gamble that they can hire Jon Gruden next year. Meanwhile, they should name Monte Kiffin coach and make defensive line coach Rod Marinelli defensive coordinator. Next year go after Gruden, make Kiffin assistant head coach and keep Marinelli as is. This would prevent Marinelli from going to the Colts, and we would keep our draft picks by not dealing with Al Davis.
-- Phil Tuzzolino, St. Petersburg
It seems that the Glazers know sooooo much about pro football that Ed, Bryan and Joel should each take turns as coach, offensive coordinator and defensive coordinator. For the 16th game they could play rock-paper-scissors to decide who gets what spot. They probably should fire the rest of the staff except the towel and water boys ... no point in getting one's hands dirty.
-- Mike Kras, St. Petersburg
I think the Bucs should hire Norv Turner. He has head-coaching experience and a good reputation on the offensive side of the ball. He is the best candidate available and not Marvin Lewis. An alternative would be to upgrade Monte Kiffin for a year and wait on Jon Gruden to become available if he is still the No. 1 coach on the Glazers' list.
-- Bill Everman, Manchester, N.H.
The only choice left for the Glazers, if the Bucs are to have any team unity next year, is to promote Monte Kiffin as head coach. The players love him and will rally around him. Nobody else has a chance to make that happen. Tell Monte he has one year to show what he can do and give him a shot. Then either sign him to a long-term deal if he succeeds or go all out for Jon Gruden next year.
-- Michael S. Caruso, Dunedin
One obvious choice for the job would have to be Gary Kubiak, the offensive coordinator for the Broncos. In recent years, his name has been linked with several head-coaching positions in the professional and college ranks. So why haven't we heard his name?
-- John LaFree, Tampa
With good assistants, there is no reason Rich McKay could not take the helm as coach for 2002 until Jon Gruden is free to sign for 2003.
-- Larry Fuentes, Tampa
Since the Bucs are looking for an offensive-minded coach, why not look to former great quarterbacks. Terry Bradshaw, Jim Kelly, Dan Marino ... just to name a few.
-- Gary Miller, Winston-Salem, N.C.
Lovie Smith should be the coach. He will bring a Rams kind of offense to Tampa Bay.
-- Randy Dorr, Palm Harbor
My choice would be New Orleans offensive coordinator Mike McCarthy. He has nine years of NFL coaching experience and favors the West Coast offense like Jon Gruden. He has turned Ricky Williams into the Saints' first back-to-back 1,000-yard rusher. He has turned Joe Horn and Willie Jackson into big-play receivers. He has turned Aaron Brooks into one of the young stars at quarterback. He knows the New Orleans team first-hand and has spent the past two years planning for Atlanta and Carolina, all of whom will be in the NFC South with the Bucs in 2002. Unfortunately this makes too much sense for the Glazers to even consider it. Welcome back to the bad old days, Bucs fans.
-- Rusty Bacher, Holiday