Clements Is About Winning, Not Celebrity

January 19th, 2012

Sniffing anything and everything about the Bucs’ head coaching candidates has Joe more and more intrigued with Tom Clements. The guy’s just a fascinating and consistently successful candidate.

Last year, Raheem Morris and rockstar general manager Mark Dominik kept trying to sell fans on the notion that veteran-player leadership was somewhat overrated and the Bucs had compensated for that by having ex-players as position coaches, stressing Alex Van Pelt, Keith Millard and Eric Yarber. Those guys could mentor as well as a teammate, fans were told.

Joe’s not sure he buys that, but there is an element of reality there. So Joe looks at Clements’ credentials and sees a world of good, from leading as a national champion quarterback at Notre Dame, winning CFL titles, and having all kinds of success with all kinds of NFL quarterbacks, plus a decent, short run as Bills offensive coordinator. Joe’s guessing his five-year law career went pretty well, too.

Now Joe learns more about the 58-year-old’s personal life and demeanor, and Joe finds it hard to believe Clements wouldn’t shine as a head coach or at least as Bucs’ offensive coordinator.

David Jones, of The Patriot News (Pa.), analyzed Clements when he was a top candidate to take over the Penn State program last month.

Clements is known as a quiet man of integrity who values his privacy, has little use for political maneuvering and yet is fully capable of presenting himself in an impressive and articulate manner when the situation calls. Pittsburgh reporters I know say you rarely even saw him as Steelers QB coach under Bill Cowher (2001-04) where he somehow coaxed Kordell Stewart and then Tommy Maddox to Pro Bowl seasons. Clements interviewed for the Notre Dame job in 2005 but then-Patriots coordinator Charlie Weis won it.

… … So, what about this? How is it that, if Clements is such a competitor, such a teacher, had such a terrific big-game career, that he’d be somewhere about seventh on a Q-scale recognizability test among former Notre Dame quarterbacks – way behind Theismann and Joe Montana, somewhere after Hanratty, Brady Quinn, Tony Rice and Ron Powlus? He’s a position coach in his late fifties and almost nobody outside of ND fans, Pittsburghers and NFL savants knows who this guy is anymore.

According to DiNardo, it’s because there’s not a smidgen of shameless self-promoter inside Clements. He just goes out and does his job. Where so many career climbers use relationships not as friendships but as opportunities to further their stations, “Tom couldn’t care less what you think. He really couldn’t.”

Again, Joe’s just liking everything he hears and reads about Clements — all business and no funny business — the anti-Raheem, if you will.

Joe always chuckled when Raheem Morris would tell media he was perhaps the most mentally tough individual on the planet. Joe suspects Clements would never say something like that.

33 Responses to “Clements Is About Winning, Not Celebrity”

  1. Rob in Orlando Says:

    Whomever the Bucs hire should be experienced, innovative, driven to win, have history of being successful at whatever they attempt, and be able to establish discipline and professionalism, something the Bucs lack.

  2. Meh Says:

    Another position coach. Wasn’t impressive in his very brief OC tenure at Buffalo. Good QB coach. Don’t want him as HC at all. Worst choice of those interviewed other than Chilly.

  3. Brad Says:

    I don’t know if Clements would be a good HC or not but 2 concerns I have.
    Why isn’t this guy an OC now? If I’m not mistaken he’s been a QB coach for 6-7 years. Based on above article if he is content on being a QB coach what does that say about him being HC material if he doesn’t care who gets promoted in front of him.

  4. knucknbuc Says:

    A guy that has the skill and talent to move up but lacks the motivation to move up in his profession. Uhm I think Imma have to pass maybe as oc but hc na. How is he going to motivate young men to take the field and snatch victory from another team, when he can’t even motivate himself to take a hc vacancy away from his peers. Uhm sorry Joe, I know you have a man-crush on him but Id rather not have him as our hc.

  5. OAR Says:

    I always chuckled too, but it was whenever Raheem’s mouth was open!

  6. jarrett Says:

    Joe do you and clements share the same agent? Does Dom know about your feelings for clements. all jokes aside clements is an interesting candidate.We could definitely do worse,cough cough childress, sherman

  7. eric Says:


    My personal rankings so far of the known candidates. Clements sounds “old school” which I like, since I am old. A little afraid of his managerial skills, but id feel like it was a good selection. The burning question is why isnt the guy ayt least a coordinator at 58?

    Maybe we should go wild and get CHip Kelly.

  8. A REAL Bucs Fan Says:

    Been saying it all along…I want Clements as Head Coach….been saying it since before Raheem got the axe.

    I think the people dead-set on Marty are looking for any excuse not to hire this guy. You could show them a crystal ball showing 3 SB trips under Clements if we hire him, and they would still say it can’t happen.

    While some of you look at his staying a QB Coach as a bad thing, I view it as commitment to his QBs.

    No drive???

    Hmmmn…then why is it that EVERY QB that he has worked with, even those who were supposedly washed up (Maddox) had some of their best years under him?

    Gee…wonder where they picked up that extra drive….

    …Clements could and should be our next Head Coach…and likely will be. So, I pose this question:

    If Tom Clements is hired as head coach of the Bucs, who would you want most as Offensive Coordinator? If you could choose anyone?

    Who would you like as Defensive Coordinator in such a situation?

    HC: Clements
    OC: ?
    DC: ?

  9. KB Says:

    Maybe as OC at best.Was beat out by Charlie Weis thats doesnt go well for looking for someone to capture this teams attention. Besides who would be the OC under him Philbin? another guy that doesnt even call his own plays. Two figure heads in the NFL head coaching shuffle. If the bucs want to model their franchise why Green Bay (sherman too), why not New England or Pittsburgh.. CONSISTENCY for last decade or so, they seem to be picking from the wrong tree.

  10. A REAL Bucs Fan Says:

    Eric, my rankings would be:

    Clements *****
    Marty *****
    Zimmer ****
    Billick ***
    Philbin ***
    Chilly *
    Gray *

    The *’s are how I would rank them on a coaching level 5 being the best. Clements and Marty are pretty close.

    I would give Marty the top, but I don’t think he’d be coaching more than 2-3 years. I would want Clements as his heir, but I KNOW we would not get him as OC. Packers would block it…unless Marty has a bug in the GMs ear there.

  11. A REAL Bucs Fan Says:

    Plus we can’t trade picks for coaching staff to get Clements.

  12. jvato24 Says:

    Hey may not say he the most mentally tought person … But will he call everyone Mental Midgets … That is the question ?

  13. Dave Says:

    I am liking Clements more and more as well for OC. Not sold on HC, but would not be opposed

  14. FlBoy84 Says:

    How about Marty as HC, Clements as OC and Zimmer as DC/Asst. HC? Would definitely have the next coach-in-waiting once Marty decides to retire.

  15. bucfanlostiniowa Says:

    You sold me awhile back, I voted for him in a fanpoll over at bucsnation , martyball was the undisputed winner with nearly half the votes.

  16. Patrick Says:

    OMG……guys, why the hell would Zimmer leave Cinci for the same position? He’s only gonna go somewhere else if it’s a HC job, not DC.

    @Joe…….did Thomas 2.2 get banned from here?

  17. eric Says:

    If the Dolphins tab Philbin GB might immediately upgrade Clements to OC, throwing a monkey wrench into our plans. The Clements as OC plans I mean.

    How about Marty HC, Hue Jackson OC? I thought Hue had the Raiders offense doing well with a lesser QB than what he could work with here.

  18. MTM Says:

    If Clements is hired it will not be as a QB’s coach. So he will not be working with Freeman. The Buc’s don’t need to be the equivalent of a coaching farm league. They need to hire a HC that has at least been a OC or DC in the league. But with 4PM guidance I’m sure they’ll find the next Raheem, Bates or Jagz.

  19. Brad Says:

    On an off topic. Anyone catch the interview with Doug Williams today? Some pretty telling stuff about our GM. Not only do I question our young GM, I have to wonder how much does Dickey bring to the table. If a good coach is not hired we have to put it on the Glazers for keeping the pop star around.

  20. jvato24 Says:

    If Philbin leaves for Miami … Green Bay will probably offer a raise and OC to Clements. I bet money on that andin intvws he has said he likes his job and the team up there and it would take alot and the right team for him to leave.

  21. Dave Says:


    Love the idea just not sure Zimmer would leave a DC job to be a DC somewhere else… they would have to tag asst. HC with him also.

  22. eric Says:

    Where is that Williams interview? Got a link? sounds most interesting.

  23. A REAL Bucs Fan Says:

    FlBoy84 Says:
    January 19th, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    How about Marty as HC, Clements as OC and Zimmer as DC/Asst. HC? Would definitely have the next coach-in-waiting once Marty decides to retire.


    Sigh. Maybe you’ve missed the other 5 times this has been pointed out, but it’s frustrating to even hear this over and over.

    Packers cannot block us from getting him as Head Coach…BUT THEY CAN BLOCK US from getting him for a lesser position…such as OC.

    Sorry if it seems like I jumped your case…it’s just that several have made the suggestion and it gets tiring pointing out that it can’t happen. If we want Clements at all, it will have to be at HC.

    Coaches cannot make lateral movements while under contract. To do that, there would have to be a trade between teams, or the original team would have to be willing to let that coach go.

  24. Joe Says:

    Joe do you and clements share the same agent?

    Joe does not have an agent, but is open to suggestions.

    As for Doug Williams, Joe has to take his comments with a grain of salt. He has a major ax to grind with Dominik.

  25. eric Says:

    I think the Packers can only block a lateral move, so hiring him as OC would be ok. OC>QB Coach. Not lateral.

    I think Dungy did that years ago when he made Herm Edwards Assistant Head Coach and DC. Chucky did it wirh Muir.

  26. Joe Says:


    Clements is a quarterback coach, not offensive coordinator. Joe Philbin is the Packers offensive coordinator. If Clements took an OC job with any team, that is not a lateral move, it’s a promotion.

  27. eric Says:

    Domink v. Doug?

    I take Doug every day of the week and twice on Sundays.

    Of course any ex players going after Chucky arent taken with the same grain of salt, are they?

    Didn’t think so.

    The thing speaks for itself.

  28. Brad Says:

    @eric. Is was on 620 with Ron and Ian.

  29. Brad Says:

    @joe. Dominik seems to be the one with ax to grind. Hes the one that got rid of Doug. He then aids in selecting Giles over him for the Ring of Honor. What does that say to the rest of the players knowing the organization would treat an ex player like that. Especially after how he was treated from previous ownership. Plus being successful at Grambling for 3 straight years tells me he knew something about recruiting.

  30. SaskBuco Says:

    Everyone all worried about never coaching before, needs to look up Sean Payton there career paths prior to him coaching at NO are very similar. Payton was an OC once for NYR have playcalling taken away, all his other jobs including Dallas was QB coach/assistant coach. Both are former QBs that get the position, both played in CFL. Only difference one was a winner as a player and that’s Clements, do you think NO regrets hiring a QB coach without HC experiance? Great coaches are found and they develop why not try and find the next one instead of hoping to lightning can strike again with older former coaches.

  31. jarrett Says:

    The doug williams interview was really interesting, he pretty much said dominik wanted sanchez not freeman, and that dominic though he was a guru, and drafting genius.

  32. eric Says:

    There’s a shocker.

  33. Brad Says:

    @real. Yes Clements could become are OC. Your assuming many
    things in order for it not to happen.
    1. Philipin would have to be hired as a HC. Until that happens, Clements could become an OC
    2. If Philbin is hired as a HC. The Packers would have to promote him as an OC. There is no guarantee that would happen. Philbin has been the OC for 5 years where Clements has been QB coach for GB for 6 years. Why didn’t the Packers promote Clements to OC prior to Philbin signing. They could bring someone else in as their OC.
    So saying who can’t be ours or anyone else’s OC is foolish.