Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter was visibly frustrated when the first question for him following the Bucs' final practice of the off-season was on some meaningless skirmish. It might have seemed meaningless to Koetter, but standing there in front of him, it seemed to have much more meaning in my eyes.
“Look, if you guys just watched a two-hour practice and that’s what you got out of it, then you’re in the wrong spot," Koetter said. "If that’s your lead story, you’re in the wrong spot. It’s hot as hell out here, these guys are working their tail off, emotions get heated and guess what? That’s football practice. Get over it.”
I can't seem to get over it. That shoving match symbolized an off-season that has brought energy and professionalism back to One Buc Place for the first time since Jon Gruden was the Bucs head coach.
I have been to One Buc Place as a member of the local media thousands of times over the past decade+. From Raheem Morris to Greg Schiano to Lovie Smith, there was always something about the organization that didn't feel like a professional NFL atmosphere. You could say amateurish at times, and completely lacking the subtle energy and drive that men with a purpose possess. That's not the vibe that I get from this current team.
Yes, it was a shoving match at the end of the last Bucs' practice of the off-season. It happens at every level of football all the time, yet this was much more. It was how all of the players rallied around it. It was the response from a head coach with meaning. No, it won't win the Bucs any games come September through December January February, but it was the exclamation point on an off-season that could propel the Bucs back to significant relevance.
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