Will Kiffin Stay In Tampa Bay?

January 14 - With the likelihood that Bill Parcells will take over as head coach of the Buccaneers increasing every day, Buccaneer Magazine has learned that Parcells may consider keeping current defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin. The Bucs' current defensive personnel is not ideally suited for the 3-4 defense which Parcells has favored over the years and the Tuna may consider keeping the defense intact.

With Tony Dungy's firing expected to come within the next day or two, two-time Super Bowl winner Bill Parcells is expected to be in place as Tampa Bay's head coach within a week. According to Buccaneer Magazine sources, Parcells is in the process of contacting coaches who would comprise his staff. He may not have to look too far.

With the Bucs' defensive personnel being far from a perfect fit for Parcells' favorite 3-4 defense, especially at linebacker and along the defensive line, the head coach known as "The Tuna" is believed to be considering retaining the services of Bucs' current defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin to maintain the continuity of Tampa Bay's 4-3 defense.

The current Bucs defensive personnel is undersized and built for speed. The 3-4 defense requires a stout nose tackle and two beefy defensive ends who can both rush the passer and play the run.

Anthony "Booger" McFarland, who weighs over 300 pounds, might be a good fit at nose tackle because he plays the run so well, and Marcus Jones is close to 275 pounds and could play end, but the rest of the Bucs defensive linemen might struggle if Parcells were to bring the 3-4 to Tampa Bay.

In the past, Parcells has preferred bigger linebackers and it was rare to find a linebacker who weighed under 240 pounds on his roster at New England and with the New York Jets. The heaviest Bucs linebacker is free agent-to-be Jamie Duncan, who weighs 242 pounds. Derrick Brooks and the rest of Tampa Bay's linebackers weigh 230 pounds or less. Bigger run-stuffing inside linebackers are one of the trademarks for the 3-4 defense, while the outside linebackers in the 3-4 are typically the 'tweener types coming out of college - undersized defensive ends who have pass rush ability.

As first reported by Buccaneer Magazine on Friday, Dan Henning, who was the quarterbacks coach (1997-1999) and offensive coordinator (2000) with the Jets under Parcells in New York, is considered the favorite to become the Bucs offensive coordinator. Henning was out of football last year.

Maurice Carthon, a former running back under Parcells with the Giants and a former running backs coach with the Jets, is currently with the Detroit Lions, but could hold a similar position under Parcells in Tampa Bay along with an assistant head coach title. Parcells has always thought highly of Carthon.

Along the offensive line, Parcells favorite Jumbo Elliott could be tabbed as the offensive line coach or at least find a job on Parcells' staff. Elliott, who played for Parcells for eight years with the Giants and five with the Jets, was hired by the Jets on November 27 to work with offensive line coach Bill Muir. Muir, who also coached with Parcells with the Jets, could be reunited with his former boss, too.

John Lott was the strength and conditioning coach with Parcells with the Jets and could make the trek down to Tampa, too.

In the front office, Mike Tannenbaum would likely be in charge of player contracts. He worked with Parcells with the Jets and is highly regarded as a capologist.

Mike Sweatman is the Chicago Bears special teams coach, but he has ties to Parcells' coaching days with the Patriots and with the Jets. If his contract comes up next year, the Tuna could make a run at him.


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