During the media Q & A portion of Lovie Smith’s introductory press conference as the newest head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, I had an opportunity to ask him what it was about Tampa Bay that made him want to come back. Tampa is where his NFL career began, when Tony Dungy gave him an opportunity to coach the linebackers back in 2006.
“When you talk about coming home, that kind of says an awful lot. When you feel like you’ve been part of a foundation but you didn’t get a chance to go all the way up to the mountain top — I wasn’t there when you saw Bryan, Joel, Ed have an opportunity to hold up the Lombardi trophy and Mr. [Malcolm] Glazer — I wasn’t a part of that then, so Tampa, of course, has a special place in my heart. I’ve talked about keeping a house here. So all of those things came into play. I’m excited that Bryan reached out to me and that we got the ball rolling and I was able to become the head coach of the team.”