Chucky Speaks

June 2nd, 2009

This afternoon former Bucs coach Chucky made an appearance on “The Blitz” with co-hosts Adam Schein and Rich Gannon on Sirius NFL Radio.

Of course, Gannon had his best years playing quarterback for Chucky with the Raiders. Chucky remembered Gannon calling a wrong play at the line of scrimmage. So Chucky began yelling for Gannon to change plays or call a timeout. In the middle of the audible, Gannon turned to Chucky and yelled, “Shut up!”

After the interview, Gannon said Chucky will be back on the field coaching after no longer than two years in the broadcast booth.

Chucky: I had to drive over hearing Gannon on the radio. I had to find out what is going on in the NFL.

Rich Gannon:I know you spent time at the University of Florida learning the spread-option offense. You have had a busy offseason.

Chucky: I really miss coaching. I have an office in downtown Tampa where eight or nine of us get together on Tuesday and Wednesday and study the 34-defense and the spread. But I have this opportunity with ESPN to work Monday Night Football. I am excited. 

RG: You told me you got away from coaching and that’s not true.

Chucky: I coach my son’s flag football team’s offense. We got off to a 0-2 and then the offense came around and the quarterback play improved and we won six in a row. You would have loved it. We had Sluggo seams and flanker drives, the same plays we ran in Oakland.

RG: You said you had the players over at your house for [film] cut ups. Is that legit?

Chucky: You know how sick I am. I bet I had 10-11 kids at a slumber party and we watched the cut-ups of the plays that we were running and you were the quarterback and I was criticizing you just like we were in Oakland.

Adam Schein:Did you have the Chucky face working on the sideline?

Chucky: Yeah, I got on the refs quite a bit. But I have mellowed in my old age. What I can say about youth football is that I encourage anyone who has the time and loves the game to help out in some way. Anyone who loves football and has the time to donate.

RG:You told me a couple of months ago you had no interest in TV. Now you’re working with Jaworski and Tirico.

Chucky: I was fortunate enough to work with the NFL Network at the combine and the draft. And out of nowhere this opportunity with ESPN occurred. I have known Jaworski since my days in Philadelphia and I love the atmosphere of Monday Night Football. I even have the music for Monday Night Football. It’s exciting.

RG: I know you. This will give you the chance again to get around teams and players. You’ll be going to practices. I can’t see you being away from the NFL as a head coach for long.

Chucky: This is like the halftime of my life. I never had a chance to enjoy the little things in life. I’m getting right with my family. I’m getting good as a flag football coach. I’m getting good at fishing. I am not suing this as a stepping stone. I am green and inexperienced at this.

AS: I said this to your agent: If you are committed, I think you can be one of the great broadcasters in history. You have that upside and potential. But if you are looking sideways at coaching, it’s human nature to hold back on criticism because you are eyeing a potential gig. How committed are you to telling the truth?

Chucky: I might try to hire you as my agent. I can only concentrate on the task at hand. I will be honest. There are 32 cameras for every Monday Night Football game. There are lots of things to take advantage of. I’m eager to improve along the way. I’m taking this totally serious.

RG: There were eight head coaching changes in the NFL. Which team has the best chance to win 10 or more games and why?

Chucky: I think the Broncos are in a division where they can be very, very good football team. They have questions at quarterback for the first time in 20 years. There is a dark cloud as for their quarterback. Tampa Bay is the only team [with coaching changes] with back-to-back winning seasons. They have a great offensive line and added some skill positions and they are in a division that they have proven they can compete. But I think the Jets. They have a lot of free agent money on that team. They have a young quarterback but they have a good core of running backs and decent receivers. I like the Jets. They have good personnel.

AS:I think it is a big deal when you look at Indy, Dungy is no longer there, Moore is no longer there, Mudd is no longer there.

Chucky:I don’t have any friends quite like Tom Moore. The NFL will miss him. Any time you break up the band and you take away the guy that wrote the songs there is a chance of major change. I know Manning is involved but when you lose Howard Mudd and Moore, two all-time great assistants in the NFL, it has to take a toll.

RG: Yeah, you have certain comfort level. When Jon left it was a major change in [being uncomfortable]. With Manning, Jon makes a great point. They had 10 years together. They were on the same page, spoke the same language.

AS: When you take a look at the Tampa situation, I am still floored at what transpired the last quarter of the season. Then there were changes with the coach, changes with the general manager. Were you surprised at what happened on the field and the changes?

Chucky: I was surprised at what happened on the field. We were 9-3. Monte [Kiffin] leaving is not why we faltered. We ran into some good teams. We did not play well defensively. We had some key injuries. We were tied or had the lead in the fourth quarter in three of those four games. We didn’t play well in the fourth quarter and when that happens they will come knocking on the door of the head coach. We gave up 800 yards rushing in the last four games. When you do that, you get behind in down and distance and with those quarterbacks, they will take advantage and make big plays. But my body of work is out there for all to evaluate. Tampa Bay felt I wasn’t good enough. I miss it. I have a lot of friends in that organization. I hope Raheem gets the job done.

RG: What type of impact will Garcia have in Oakland?

Chucky: He is a competitor. And you have to be to last this long in the league. He’s not the type of guy that is complacent as a backup. If you look at Jeff’s career, he protects the ball better than just about anyone that has played. This is what Jeff Garcia brings: a guy that will protect the football. It frustrates you at times but he will protect the football and that will help JaMarcus Russell who has a good supporting cast. They are good on defense.  This could be the year they turn it around.

AS: When you take a look at the opportunity at ESPN, there were reports that you were close to landing a gig with the NFL Network. What can you say about that?

Chucky: I had a unique opportunity to work with the NFL Network. Maybe there might have been an opportunity to work with the network but when I had a chance to work with ESPN and Monday Night Football, that was a big deal. When I was a kid I argued with my mom about staying up to watch the second half. This is a big deal to me, a big honor and a great challenge. I may have had other business opportunities but I had to take this. I am thrilled.

6 Responses to “Chucky Speaks”

  1. Jeff Says:

    Sorry Chucky, Kiffin’s departure ABSOLUTELY had an impact on the defensive unit. It might not be the sole reason, but it was a big one. It took the wind out of the sails.

  2. BigMacAttack Says:

    I just want to say thanks, Joe. You just don’t get the quality of Bucs’ coverage on TBO or TampaBay that you do on JBF.Com. Pewter is a great site, but Joe your hard work on this site really shows. I am always down for a good Chucky report, and great coach or not, he never has a bad word to say about anyone. MNF should be good this year.

  3. BucYouCharley Says:

    How do you know Chucky is lying?

    His lips are moving.

    I see him using the MNF gig like a vulture looking for dying coaches….

  4. Joe Says:


    Thanks so much for the compliments. Joe’s blushing.

    To be honest, Joe cannot bag on the crew. They do a fine job as is evidenced by the number of stories we link from them. If Joe thinks a story is good, he will link to it. And Joe liberally links to TBO content.

    A little secret: Joe isn’t trying to out-do TBO because, well, he can’t (now) and Joe’s targeting different content. Also, the TBO crew is under tight restrictions on what they can and cannot do. Within reason, Joe has no such restrictions as Joe has to only answer to Joe.

    Joe’s still going to bust his tail to give Bucs fans something to read and discuss. Joe strives to live up to his motto: “Bucs news each day everyday.”

    Thanks again for the kind words. Joe appreciates very much your support.

  5. JK Says:

    Joe, I just want to second what Big Mac said. This is the only site I come to especially in the off season to catch up on the Bucs. I check in at least once a day. Thanks for all the info. You are all pro at what you do.

  6. Joe Says:

    Thanks JK! Please let your friends know about Joe.