The wildest month in recent NFL history was in for another surprise Wednesday night when Tampa Bay Buccaneers Bruce Arians retired as head coach. Arians is transitioning into a new role with the franchise as his new title is senior football consultant.
Congratulations to the former Virginia Tech quarterback. Arians, who played at Virginia Tech from 1972-74, played in 33 games for the Hokies. College football teams didn’t pass much in that era, as Arians finished his college career with 1,270 yards passing, six touchdowns and eight interceptions. Arians rushed for 319 yards and 14 touchdowns with the Hokies.
Arians, who was considered one of the top assistant coaches in the NFL for years, finally received his chance as a head coach with the Arizona Cardinals in 2013. He spent five seasons with the Cardinals, going 49-30-1 before he retired as the franchise’s winningest coach.
After taking a year off, Arians returned as the head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He went 7-9 in his first season back on the sidelines. However, things would change dramatically for Arians as the legendary Tom Brady signed with the Bucs in March 2020. Brady and Arians would lead the Buccaneers to a Super Bowl championship.
Arians would coach one more season for the Bucs, going 13-4 before falling to the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC divisional round.
Arians released a statement through the team:
I have spent most of the last 50 years of my life on the sidelines as a football coach in one form or another. Today, I have made the decision to move from the sidelines into another role with the Buccaneers front office, assisting Jason Licht and his staff. I love football. I love the relationships, the strategy, the competition—everything. It has been one hell of a ride, but I know this is the right time for me to make this transition.
He finished his NFL coaching career with a record of 80-48-1. He had a 6-3 record in the playoffs.
Congratulations to Coach Arians, perhaps now he will have more time to return to Blacksburg. Arians did attend a game last season for the first time in years.
Brady released a statement on Arians’ retirement:
Arians’ defensive coordinator and longtime protege, Todd Bowles, will take over as head coach. Bowles played Arians at Temple and the two have always remained close. Bowles is certainly deserving of a second shot as head coach after his first stint with the New York Jets ended after only four seasons.