The Dirk Koetter Difference

May 28th, 2015
Bucs OC Dirk Koetter talks schemes and blocking.

Bucs OC Dirk Koetter will smooth over the rough edges

In case no one noticed, the offense was a hot mess last year, from a sieve of an offensive line to inconsistent (at best) running backs — not one ran for 500 yards, not one! — and turnover-prone Josh McCown too often played like a scared Labrador puppy.

It wasn’t all the players’ fault (a lot was, though). Joe remembers interviewing former NFL quarterback and FOX game analyst Brady Quinn, who all but said the Bucs offense was as disorganized as a firehouse run by The Three Stooges.

Dirk Koetter should be a difference maker from last year’s ill-suited acting offensive coordinator, Marcus Arroyo, suggests Justin Pawlowski of He noted, by way of NFL Films analyst Greg Cosell, that Koetter will figure out how to put “America’s Quarterback,” Bucs signal-caller Jameis Winston, in a position to succeed, not get beaten to a pulp.

“One thing Koetter will have to determine is how good the offensive line is, because that will dictate how many deep drops he can call for Winston,” Cosell wrote. “You can argue the Buccaneers had one of the worst lines in the NFL last season, and they addressed that a bit in the offseason. But the one thing you don’t want to do with Winston, particularly because he’s not a naturally quick-twitch athlete, is get him in a situation where he gets hit a lot. If you get hit a lot early in your career you might start to see ghosts. The last thing you want a quarterback to do is anticipate and perceive pressure that isn’t there, so Koetter will have to keep that in mind with Winston.”

While I do believe the Bucs’ offensive line was horrendous last season, some of the blame can be placed on the Bucs quarterback play from 2014 as well. Josh McCown is notorious for holding on to the ball for far longer than any quarterback should, and Mike Glennon goes into the fetal position at the sign of any pressure. Even a good offensive line can look bad in that type of situation.

Jameis Winston can make the Bucs’ offensive line better. One of Winston’s strongest attributes is his anticipated throws. Having a quarterback that fully understands the offensive and opposing coverages, who also gets the football out of his hand, will lead to the offensive line looking much more competent than it did in 2014.

This all adds up. Koetter has been around the block a few times. He made David Garrard a Pro Bowl quarterback, and clearly he had Matty Ice playing at a high level with schlap for an offensive line. So he ought to be able to figure out how best to use young Jameis.

Let’s just say Joe has more faith in Koetter than he ever did in Arroyo.

28 Responses to “The Dirk Koetter Difference”

  1. drdneast Says:

    The Bucs played in space last year, outerspace. The space was actually between Mark Arroyo’s inexperienced incompetent ears. It was wide open and very vacant.

  2. DallasBuc Says:

    Oh how great was the super-secret Manhattan project Jeff Tedford “speed in space” offense this time last year and all through the offseason? One would hope the actual product will improve and they won’t peddle that secret weapon crap like they did last year. Look like a bunch of fools when training camp was over and they had to start actually playing football. Damn near killed poor old Tedford when he saw his secret weapon (mis)fire!

  3. America's Bucs Fan Says:

    In Atlanta last year, the Falcons had a horrible offensive line also. Koetter went to a short/quick passing game to keep Matt Ryan from getting killed. Somehow, the offensive minds for the Bucs last year could not figure that out themselves

  4. nate_tweetz Says:

    Atlanta had the 8th best offense in the league last year behind a horrible offensive line. As as team, they only rushed for 123 more yards on the season than the Bucs did. Offense was not Atlanta’s issue last year. It was their horrible defense. Koetter should be able to turn “water into wine” with the guys we have on the OL. At least I hope he can. He’s shown that he’s been able to do it before.

  5. MaHaBoNe Says:

    What would be awesome is if the two milk carton lineman drafted last year somehow develop into serviceable players, and the two this year are what are being advertised, then we could have a decent OL in a year or two. This year we know pretty much is a year to show improvement but in 2 to 3 years with some more talent added in the draft our future would seem to shine brightly. Nothing wrong with a little optimism once in a while!

  6. simeon 97 Says:

    Joe, when does Koetter put Jamies into the game? which week?

  7. OB Says:

    Last year was Lovie’s offense period because Arroyo didn’t do anything that Lovie didn’t tell him to do because from being to end last year the offense played the same.

    You can’t tell me that a Head Coach sees his offense not just going down the toilet but in the toilet and does nothing to try to improve it, of course with Lovie, may be he did nothing, only Joe knows.

  8. cmurda Says:

    I said at the beginning of last year’s season that there is only 1 way the Bucs could go. Little did I know that 1 way was down. This year I would be inclined to say the same thing but I am going to refrain and just say that Koetter gives us a lot of hope.

  9. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    Last year, teams discovered the way to beat Tampa was to stack the box, and blitz often when we were forced to pass.

  10. bucco brice Says:

    the blitz will be coming plenty this year too…rookie QB and O Lineman…hope they’re prepared for the onslaught!

  11. bucs4lyfe Says:

    this year im going to watch it all unfold, not getting into all the offseason hype this year just because stories have to be written about the local sports team. i’ll give him david Garrard to some extent but matt ryan was going to be a good player no matter who the offensive coordinator was just like matthew Stafford and Andrew luck and some other day one starting rookies. doesn’t matter how great of an offensive coordinator you are you still need great players to be considered great and dirk koetter is not considered a guru or great coordinator but he is a very good one

  12. Buc-A-New Says:

    Glennon WithOut Koetter would have won six games last yr if he started from day one.
    We Better be a 9 win team at least.

  13. cmurda Says:

    Buc a new,

    If you demand that we go from a 2 win team to a 9 win team then you are setting yourself up for disappointment. I’ve shed my optimistic ways and replaced them with realistic ways. Realistically, if we go to 6 or 7 wins, then there is already a reason to smile.

  14. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Dirk Koetter “America’s OC”

  15. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    We talk about O line play and how it was so bad last season but I just finish reading a interesting article written by a columnist for the Seattle Seahawks called the”Field Gulls”. It mention five problems they’re team could have this up coming season. Poor O line play was one of them. Basically all they’re line men with the exception of Max Unger who was traded graded out bad last season but no one would guess that. Why because we constantly see beast mode high lights. The writer mention they did nothing to address they’re line in the draft and that it is concern thru out the organization. So in short a team with a porous o Line has represented the NFC in the superbowl the last two season’s why you might ask… Maybe it’s simple. Could it just be effort. Again the site is called the “field Gulls”if you wish to review it for your selves.

  16. Stanglassman Says:


    You have repeated that 6 win theory a bunch of times but it’s only an opinion not reality. Repeating it over and over makes it no more true than the first time you said it. Glennon went 1-5 as a starter so maybe he would have went 3-13 possibly 4-12 statistically speaking but I doubt it. I never felt the Bucs had a better chance of winning with him under center last year.

  17. Nole on Sat.-Bucc on Sun. Says:

    And dallasbuc studying with your Manhattan project theme. Did it not make you scratch your head a little when it was brought to everyone’s attention that tedford once ready to come back was denied by Lovie? Now I already know what you’ll say,you’ll scream incompetence like you usually do. But for me and my tanking theory not allowing him back was all apart the plans homie. This chit is easy to see,how some of you don’t is beyond me.

  18. Buccfan37 Says:

    America’s incompetent O line, nyuc nyuc nyuc as Curly would say.

  19. bucs4lyfe Says:

    if we only won 6 games I honestly wouldn’t care if this fanbase found out that we finally found a franchise quarterback and we know for sure he’ll be a stud….it would be disappointing but expectations for the future would be huge, im tired of thinking short term I want this team building for the future to have a powerhouse again but if that time came sooner than later i’d simply say thank you licht and lovie

  20. The Buc Realist Says:

    another factor of Are O-line being the worst in the NFL is that the TE’s cannot stay on the field. no double teams or chip blocking from the TE is what exposed Penn in 2013, once he was isolated is one of the reasons he gave up the second most sacks out of all Tackles ( right and left Tackles!!)

    and in 2014 our TE and Full back and non-blocking RB isolated and exposed the lack of talent on the O-line!!

  21. Getaclue Says:

    I’m hoping we claim the guard Chester released by Washington off waivers

  22. Luther Says:

    Chester’s cap hit is $4mil if I read that right. Not sure that is the right thing to do if he was struggling. That’s starter money and I’m not sure we should pay that kind of money if you aren’t sure he is up to the task.

  23. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    “Winston’s strongest attributes is his anticipated throws”

    Let me fix that…

    To defenses, one of Winston’s weakest attributes is his anticipated throws.

    There you go.

  24. Lou. Says:

    I think the team strength can best be viewed from a statistical perspective. Strong teams tend to remain strong. Weak teams — same thing. There ARE statistical outliers — that is expected and almost predictable. But reversion to the mean is nearly inevitable. The question to is this: what is the mean?

    Take KC. From 2007 forward, they have been a poor team. They had one good year — 10 wins in 2010 — with as many wins as the previous three years combined. Didn’t last. But they were not dreadful either — the 2 win team of 2012 was an anamoly. They were and are better than that, but they are not the 2013 11-win record either. Their current standing would be 7.5 in an uptrend — not elite, but contending to be a contender.

    The Bucs have nearly been historically bad.

    2009 — 3 wins
    2010 — 10 wins
    2011 — 4 wins
    2012 — 6.5 wins (we all know the Atlanta game didn’t count)
    2013 — 4 wins
    2014 — 2 wins

    The six year rolling average is 5 wins/season. The outlier year makes things look too rosy — throw out the top and bottom and this is a 4-win/season team. The trend is your friend until it isn’t, and meaningful turnaround requires three years (or more) of consistent play a standard deviation above the mean.
    The good news is that a quarterback is most likely to spark a change in fortunes. Andrew Luck has the Colts playing well above their statistical center. And he is getting measurably better each year. All Buc fans should hope this can be true for Jameis.

    The bad news is that the Bucs do suck.

    Until they don’t.

  25. CreamsicleBananaHammock Says:

    Also, don’t forget that Koetter met Mark Helfrich that one time….for that reason alone I expect to see a lot of spread option looks and basically a read option play every single down

  26. cmurda Says:


    +3. Well done sir. I suppose we should look for a ton of reverses and WR screens also. At least 7 a game. Ahhh, the good ole Benn’d around

  27. Buc1987 Says:

    “Let’s just say Joe has more faith in Koetter than he ever did in Arroyo.”

    Ya think?

    Hilarious Joe…hilarious.

  28. BlogTalkFootball Says:

    The Bubble Screen is your friend, young Jameis.