Kiffin Wanted Sapp Out On Third Downs

July 10th, 2013

Talk to Warren Sapp about Father Dungy and Sapp speaks with reverence. Ask Sapp about Chucky and he can’t stop laughing with all the stories. Bring up former Bucs defensive line coach Rod Marinelli and Sapp’s words boom with gusto and respect.

What about former Bucs defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin? Sapp, to his credit, will try to change the subject or flat out shake his head and won’t say anything. It’s clear Kiffin is not Sapp’s favorite subject.

Joe may have stumbled upon why Sapp didn’t place Kiffin on the same pedestal as the aforementioned coaches. It’s because, per Sapp, Kiffin wanted Sapp off the field on third downs, so Sapp told a gaggle of reporters, including Joe, earlier this year.

“Monte Kiffin was taking me out on third downs,” Sapp said of his first season with Kiffin. “I went to TV and said if I am getting double- and triple-teamed on first and second downs, I must be allowed to rush on third downs. [Tony Dungy] said, ‘You got it.’

“If we were going to be the team we need to be, I have to be in there on third downs. I will give you all I have on first and second down. Hold the double-team, spill it, whatever you want to do. I am with you. Third down has got to be mine! That’s how we went about it.”

And it worked!

Imagine how different Bucs history much less Sapp’s history with the Bucs would have been. Would the Bucs have ever won a Super Bowl with Sapp not rushing the quarterback? Would Sapp have been in the Bucs’ Ring of Honor (to come Nov. 11) much less inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame next month?

Sapp has a long memory. If he believes anyone slighted him, he won’t forget. If he feels someone helped him out, he won’t forget that, either.

Kiffin was a fantastic defensive coordinator. No one is perfect. In the case of Kiffin and Sapp, Kiffin really dropped the ball. Thankfully, Father Dungy intervened.

24 Responses to “Kiffin Wanted Sapp Out On Third Downs”

  1. Buc'n Junkie Says:

    I wonder what Kiffin’s thoughts were on that. Was it he thought Sapp wasn’t good enough, or was it just part of his defensive philosophy to use 3rd down specialist. That would be an interesting follow-up Joe, Get Kiffin’s explanation.

  2. Dan Says:

    Who cares about something that happened 10 plus years ago

  3. Buc'n Junkie Says:

    Uh everyone who breathes, lives and craps Buccaneer football. That means history and everything that goes with it. Just because you don’t care about our history doesn’t mean you’ve gotta come in here and piss in on our cornflakes.

  4. Jeff Says:

    Dan- We Bucs fans care about what happened 10 years ago. If you do not like it then GO AWAY! Its that simple!!.

    As a matter of fact, I think I will go watch my 2002 dvd of the Bucs champ season and have a beer.

  5. Yeah It's me! Says:

    Kiffin was awesome for the Bucs but I don’t believe they have the right talent in Dallas for him to please Jerry Jones for long.I give him 2-3 years and Kiffin will be out in Dallas.J Jones is always quick to change coach’s but Jones is Dallas’ biggest bump in the road.

  6. Yeah It's me! Says:

    One of my favorite things to watch before a Bucs game was when Chip Carter on Fox13 use to interview Kiffin before every Bucs game.That was fun to watch.

  7. Joe Says:

    Dan:

    Who cares about something that happened 10 plus years ago

    For one, Joe does.

  8. Pewter Bullion Says:

    Dan GO AWAY!

  9. Oil Derrick Brooks Says:

    Who’s TV? I think that’s “TD”

  10. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Dan Says:
    “Who cares about something that happened 10 plus years ago…”

    Wow. History is where the best lessons are learned, friend.

  11. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    Jeff Says:
    “As a matter of fact, I think I will go watch my 2002 dvd of the Bucs champ season and have a beer.”

    NFL Network had Americas Game on the 2002 Bucs bowl game the other day…got it DVRed. :)

  12. Dan Says:

    [And... that will get you run. Thanks for participating. -- Joe]

  13. Pewter_Power Says:

    Anybody who has ever read Sapp’s book knows he doesn’t like Kiffin. In his book he places he blames Kiffin for their loss in the 1999 NFC Championship game to the Rams.

  14. Dave Says:

    If I recall, Kiffin is was also the driving force behind thinking Booger could replace what he THOUGH was an aging Sapp, so they let Sapp go. I understand $$ had something to do with it as well, but Kiffin was the force in the coaches front who thought Booger could fill the shoes.

    I love Monte, but he is “slightly” overrated. Dungy was the driving force behind the defense and Kiffin went along for the ride then took it over and did good to his credit, but by that time, the players were in palce and knew what had to be done.

  15. stanglassman Says:

    Didn’t Dungy pick Sean Payton as D-coordinator first and he got the Saints head job so he went with Monte?

  16. Buc'n Junkie Says:

    ^^^^ The Tampa 2 was Kiffin’s brainchild. Just so happens that we had the perfect personnel in place to make it so prolific. So many teams now, have tried to emulate it since then, with some success, but most lacked the right chemistry of players to completely pull it off.

  17. Buc1987 Says:

    Be nice to Dan everyone…I’m umm always nice. Dan we still like you.

  18. Joe Says:

    Didn’t Dungy pick Sean Payton as D-coordinator first and he got the Saints head job so he went with Monte?

    Way off there. Payton has never, in college or NFL, been a defensive coach. Additionally, Payton was hired as the Saints coach long after Father Dungy was shoved out the door.

    Chucky was thinking of hiring Payton as offensive coordinator when he got the gig with the Saints.

    You may be thinking of Marvin Lewis, who Richie McKay wanted to hire to replace Father Dungy and the Glazers not only nixed that idea, but took over the coaching search responsibilities.

  19. Pewter_Power Says:

    Payton was always a defensive coach. Tony Dungy was hires by the Buccaneers in 1996 while Payton was the qb coach at the University of Illinois. Dungy hired Kiffin because they coached together with the Vikings and he knew they shared the same defensive philosophy

  20. Pewter_Power Says:

    Excuse me, I meant he was always an OFFENSIVE coach, my bad.

  21. Buc1987 Says:

    and….Kiffin is defensive God in my eyes.

  22. Espo Says:

    This is old news. Very odd. In hindsight it makes no sense but at the time all he tried to do was rotate his rookie. Good thing they figure out out.

    I don’t understand how people can say Sapp doesn’t like Kiffin. I read the book just like everyone else. He is definitely an outspoken critic but then again, when is he not?

  23. Buc1987 Says:

    @Espo…wrong Sapp was not a rookie under Dungy. Sam Wyche drafted Brooks and Sapp.

  24. Joe Says:

    Pewter:

    Payton was always a defensive coach. Tony Dungy was hires by the Buccaneers in 1996 while Payton was the qb coach at the University of Illinois.

    Pretty sure Sean Payton was the Illini quarterback coach when Simeon Rice was there.

 
 

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