Tampa Bay Buccaneers Hire Mike Smith As Defensive Coordinator

Tampa Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter did not hesitate to hire a new defensive coordinator, as good friend Mike Smith is now back again to the NFL, according to NFL.

They say that business isn’t just about what you know. Who you know makes a big difference as well. Fortunately for Mike Smith, that theory worked out pretty well in his NFL career.

After spending a year on the sidelines after being canned as the Atlanta Falcons head coach, Mike Smith has decided that he will be the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive coordinator.

Dirk Koetter was hired by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers earlier this week, and he immediately set about putting together a coaching staff that can take the team to the NFL Playoffs soon.

Mike Smith and Dirk Koetter were on the same coaching staff when the two of them were both coordinators working under Jack Del Rio with the Jacksonville Jaguars back in 2007.

From 2012 until 2014, Dirk Koetter was employed under Mike Smith as the Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator. Koetter joined the Tampa Bay Buccaneers when Smith was fired.

Now, Dirk Koetter is properly returning the favor to a good friend and helping the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defense by bringing in one of the better defensive minds in the entire NFL.

Dirk Koetter
Dirk Koetter

The move is widely being praised because Dirk Koetter has never been a head coach in the NFL. Koetter was a college head coach at Boise State. Mike Smith brings years of experience.

One of the other possible reason why Dirk Koetter hired Mike Smith is because Tampa Bay Buccaneers management was not pleased with the staff that Lovie Smith had put together.

Lovie Smith and former Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier had their unit ranked 10th overall in the NFL, which will be a tough challenge for Mike Smith.

Though the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were able to prevent a lot of yards from opposing offenses, they were horrible at preventing other NFL teams from scoring points against their team.

Mike Smith immediately jumped on the opportunity to join the Tampa Bay Buccaneers because he was unable to secure a head coaching job from the New York Giants a few days ago.

The Detroit Lions and Tennessee Titans were the other two options that Mike Smith was looking into, but those two teams appear to be headed in a different direction than Smith.

Lovie Smith
Lovie Smith

Fortunately for Lavonte David and Kwon Alexander, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will not need to change their defensive front because Mike Smith uses a 4-3 scheme like Lovie Smith.

The big different for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defenders, though, will be the fact that the linebackers will be blitzing a whole lot more than they were with Leslie Frazier as the coach.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers defensive backs will also need to make some adjustments, as they will not be playing zone defense nearly as much. More man to man coverage is expected.

While he will be coaching the defensive side of the game, Mike Smith can also help Dirk Koetter with how to handle Jameis Winston. Smith worked with Matt Ryan as an NFL rookie.

The combination of Mike Smith and Dirk Koetter has potential, as the two were able to lead the lowly Jacksonville Jaguards to an 11-5 record and a wildcard spot in the NFL Playoffs.

Dirk Koetter and Mike Smith led the Atlanta Falcons to a narrow loss in the NFC Championship against the San Francisco 49ers, which would have taken them to the Super Bowl.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers can only hope for the same success with Dirk Koetter and Mike Smith now.

[Featured Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images]