Cutting His Future Boss

March 25th, 2016
A man pivotal in Jason Licht;'s career path once was told by Licht he was unwanted .

A man pivotal in Jason Licht’s career once was told by Licht he was unwanted.

While Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht recently turned 46, the long list of coaches and general managers he has worked under is impressive.

Just some coaches Licht learned from during his climb up the NFL ladder: (not to mention playing for Tom Osborne) Don Shula, Jimmy Johnson, Pete Carroll, Bill Belicheat, Andy Reid and Bruce Arians.

Naturally, Licht, a pre-med major in college, also answered to general managers. But in a strange twist of career paths, when Licht was a gopher of a personnel guy in Miami, Licht had to break the news to a young offensive lineman that he was going to have to find work elsewhere, that his NFL likely were finished — never dreaming himself that same guy would hire Licht years later.

That person was (and is) current Arizona general manager Steve Keim, one of Licht’s tightest confidants.

Licht recounted the episode of when he and Keim became anything but friends to good guy Peter Schrager of FOX Sports, in a recent “Peter Schrager Podcast.”

“My second year [in Miami, Keim] was an offensive lineman,” Licht recalled. “We became friendly, we knew each other. I think I was actually the one who had to tell him he was getting cut. A few years later, he hires me and promotes me to vice president of player personnel of the Cardinals.”

Think of any episode of “Hard Knocks,” in which a personnel guy is dispatched to tell a player that he needs to see the head coach in his office, when the player knows exactly what that meeting is about. Well, that was Licht once upon a time.

That’s just wild to Joe that a guy Licht told was out of a job, would years later give Licht a job and all but set him up to be hired by Lovie Smith — and eventually take over football operations of the Bucs.

Imagine getting laid off and the person who told you to clean out your desk, or to hand over your keycard, hires you some day.

10 Responses to “Cutting His Future Boss”

  1. Buckydo Says:

    That is called interpersonal skill!

  2. biff barker Says:

    Meanwhile, Riverboat Ron reminisces of being fired by a grade B college coach right after a Super Bowl.

    Tales from Terminator Smith’s basement.

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

    He was terrible,but I thank him for Licht Koetter and WINSton.

  4. Chris@Apple Roof Cleaning Says:

    LOL, I bet Lovie Smith WISHED he never hired Licht, but I am very very happy that Licht was instrumental in ridding Tampa Bay of him.

  5. The Buc Realist Says:


    NFL GM Licht had more to heading in direction for Koetter!!! But you can thank lovie for being the worst head coach in the NFL to secure the #1 overall pick!!!

  6. HIRE JIMBO Says:


  7. HIRE JIMBO Says:


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

    I hear you Realist!!! and I wasn’t in attendance to confirm any of what you just said. Whatever the case tho I feel very confident in this trifecta going forward.

  9. flmike Says:

    Looks like Joe stumbled upon Licht’s new nick name – Natural Licht

  10. The Buc Realist Says:


    Trifecta??? Hopefully if all goes to plan, it will be more of the “4 Horsemen” with Coach Smitty!!!!!