After appearing to be a lock for a head coaching job, Mike Smith signs an extension to remain defensive coordinator for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
After looking like Mike Smith was on to bigger but not necessarily better things, defensive coordinator Mike Smith will be back to lead the defense next season. Citing a source, Adam Schefter of ESPN used Twitter to break the news that the Buccaneers retained the services of their defensive coordinator in spite of being one of the main candidates for the head coaching vacancy for the now Los Angeles Chargers.
Buccaneers agreed to terms on extension with DC Mike Smith, per league source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 12, 2017
Apparently Chargers fans aren’t the only ones who found the new logo ugly.
Mike Smith is the former head coach of the Atlanta Falcons and appeared to be the front man for many of the coaching vacancies, interviewing with the Jacksonville Jaguars and the San Diego…ahem, Los Angeles Chargers before deciding that Tampa Bay was the place for him. After the Jaguars decided to retain interim head coach Doug Marrone, Smith found success as the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons, accumulating a record of 66-46.
Last year under Smith, the Bucs defense began a transformation to becoming the dominant force it once was. The defense was a major part of the five-game winning streak that had the Buccaneers finish above .500 for the first time since 2010 and in the middle of the playoff hunt in late December. Although the Bucs overall defensive rankings did leave a little to be desired, the Bucs improved from allowing 26.1 points per game in 2015 to 23.1 in 2016. The Buccaneers also ranked second in takeaways in the NFL with 29, behind only the Kansas City Chiefs.
Retaining Mike Smith to mold a young, improving defense may just be the first step to returning to postseason play for the first time in ten seasons.
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