Joel Glazer Talks “Egos,” Experience & New Era

April 3rd, 2017


Joel Glazer looked particularly relaxed last week at the NFL owners meetings in Phoenix.

The co-owner of the Buccaneers wasn’t smiling about the lush grounds, the deluxe spa treatments or the prompt room service at the Arizona Biltmore.

What has him feeling upbeat is your local football team.

Beyond the 9-7 finish, Glazer is thrilled about the prospect of sending boatloads of cash toward franchise cornerstones like Jameis Winston and Mike Evans. Other young mainstays like Kwon Alexander, Ali Marpet and Donovan Smith also have lucrative extensions on the horizon.

“That’s when you know you’re headed in the right direction,” Glazer said in our private meeting. “If you don’t have your own guys to re-sign, that’s generally a sign you’re not drafting and developing well enough.”

Gerald McCoy and Lavonte David were granted contract extensions in recent years — but that used to be a routine process at One Buc Place when Tampa Bay was a perennial league power.

The Bucs used to make it a point to keep their nucleus together, so Derrick Brooks, Warren Sapp, John Lynch, Ronde Barber and Mike Alstott weren’t going anywhere until the Glazers were allowed to hoist that Vince Lombardi Trophy.

A lot of money was spent keeping the gang together, but things changed drastically after that Super Bowl.

Sapp and Lynch soon departed and Alstott’s role diminished. By the time Tampa Bay made its last playoff appearance five years later, there were few studs remaining to build around.

What followed was nine years in the NFL wilderness, marked by a flurry of head coaches and dwindling fan interest. ESPN and NFL Network shunned the Bucs and national writers avoided the team as if MRSA was dripping from the walls at One Buc Place.

Times have changed.

Big-Money Ball

“Now we’ve got to be smart with the salary cap,” Glazer said, “but we’re entering an era that is very exciting.”

It took five consecutive years in the NFC South basement to set the stage for this Buccaneer resurrection.

After waiting decades for his shot at the big time, Dirk Koetter proved his worth as an NFL head coach. He doesn’t coddle Winston … and that’s a good thing.

The man who brings Koetter the players has the full support of the men who write the checks.

“We couldn’t be more pleased with the job Jason Licht has done,” Glazer said of the fourth-year GM. “If you look at his drafts, Jason has done an excellent job building the nucleus of this team. When I look at a GM, I look at how are the drafts going?”

Licht is still waiting for his contract extension. One more successful season should keep him in Tampa for quite awhile.

“Nobody’s going to get it all right,” said Glazer. “But Jason’s vast experience is coming through. We have great faith in our general manager and it’s important that he has a great relationship with Dirk. They talk things through, they respect each other and their egos are in check.”

Stability Models

It’s been an interesting offseason in the division.

While the Bucs kept their coaching staff relatively intact, the Falcons saw offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan leave for the top job in San Francisco, working with Lynch.

Sean McDermott, one of the NFL’s premier defensive coordinators in Carolina, will now try to turn around the Bills while the Saints are hoping veteran Ted Ginn Jr. can replace Brandin Cooks as a big-play threat for Drew Brees, who is growing impatient after three consecutive 7-9 finishes.

“To me, the Bucs are right there,” says Hall of Fame coach Tony Dungy. “Players will embrace the raised expectations in Tampa and Jameis Winston has proven himself to be a natural leader.”

Next March, the NFL owners meetings will cross three time zones and return to Florida. That smile on Joel Glazer’s face in Orlando will say it all.

Ira Kaufman is the Tampa Bay’ area’s only Hall of Fame voter. He pens columns three times a week here on, and his award-winning podcasts pop every Tuesday and Thursday. Falcons owner Arthur Blank calls Ira “Irv,” and Ira is well known for never turning away free food.

14 Responses to “Joel Glazer Talks “Egos,” Experience & New Era”

  1. Defense Rules Says:

    @Glazer … “If you don’t have your own guys to re-sign, that’s generally a sign you’re not drafting and developing well enough.” What a great quote Ira … not so much drafting well (although that’s vital), but the part about ‘developing well’. Bucs haven’t done a good enough job in that area since Tony Dungy I think. Of course, changing coaching staffs every 2 yrs doesn’t help much. Right now the Bucs have some outstanding positional coaches and I for me am convinced that’ll pay huge dividends down the road in terms of player development.

  2. tmaxcon Says:

    defense rules

    if they drafted well in the Dungy era, Dungy would not have wasted one of the best defenses in league history and gruden would not have had to come in and clean up the mess. Once again the legend of Dungy and McKay far exceeds their actual accomplishments. Dungy and McKay fielded some of the worst and most embarrassing offenses the NFL has ever witnessed. You can’t give them credit for Sam Whyce’s defensive players yet not hold them accountable for their offensive failures. Hell old man McKay won more division titles than son and the one dimensional overrated one and he did it in a true expansion era.

  3. Yar Says:

    Well said tmax, Dungy gets a lot more credit than he deserves. Bucs could have won 2 or 3 SB’s if they had an offense.

  4. Buccfan37 Says:

    Dungy sponged himself right into the HoF. Wannabe TV talking head straight out of Lord of the Rings. I can’t listen or watch his delivery, Mr know it all.

  5. Defense Rules Says:

    tmaxcon … Wasn’t talking about drafting well, was talking about ‘developing well’. Apparently you and I disagree on that point: Tony Dungy put together an outstanding staff of positional coaches and that translated into developing a lot of players who might otherwise have just been average, obviously most (but not all) on the defensive side of the ball. Take a good look at our 2002 SB team and see how many on that team were drafted and developed during Tony’s 6 yrs here … maybe names like Alstott, Gramatica, Barber, Singleton, Kelly, Webster, McFarland, Dexter Jackson & Dwight Smith will sound familiar? Several others drafted in those yrs were also pretty good, guys like Donnie Abraham, Warrick Dunn, and Frank Middleton. All were drafted and developed between 1996 & 2001 … many of them 3rd & 4th rnd picks by the way.

    By the way, one guy drafted in 2001 by the Bucs had a pretty interesting career … but not with the Bucs. A guy named Russ Hochstein drafted in the 2001 5th rnd by the Bucs. Played 2 games with us in 2002 … under Jon Gruden … then went to some team called the Patriots. Managed to start for 6 yrs for them (2003-2008) at Guard & Center, playing in an average of 15 games per season. Then went to Denver and started for them for 3 yrs before retiring. Now what was that again tmaxcon about holding coaches accountable for their offensive failures?

  6. Architek Says:

    Am I missing something or what? How did Dungy, McKay, and Wyche become the take away from an article about the current and future state of the organization?

    I guess I’m confused but I’m very grateful and excited about the team and organization. Finally some stability and internal success for drafting and developing guys.

  7. rrsrq Says:

    First I am amazed that Joe printed a positive statement from Dungy on Jameis (event hough he had a reason for supporting MM, he had a son at Oregon and was familiar with him). Second, could the offense have been better under Dungy, sure, but the backfield of Dunn and Alstott was one of the best, he had no idea that a third string rookie QB would have to lead this team and he took guys that were productive in college in the Gator boys JG and RA and there skill set with a rookie QB did not work.
    But lets go forward, Go Bucs

  8. Pickgrin Says:

    Architek Says:
    April 3rd, 2017 at 12:07 pm
    Am I missing something or what? How did Dungy, McKay, and Wyche become the take away from an article about the current and future state of the organization?

    Its just tmax being tmax – that’s why. Life in general pretty much sucks when you look at everything through sh!t colored glasses – so that would naturally spill over into continually negative comments about his “favorite” NFL team as well…

    Just consider it tmaxipad’s personal form of self therapy and move on to more relevant comments…

  9. Pickgrin Says:

    Glazer has a right to feel good about his GM, coaching staff and the state of the Buccaneers organization at this point. The arrow is definitely pointing up. Finally!

  10. Bucsfanman Says:

    Another takeaway from that era was the amount of premium draft picks that the Bucs gave up for big-time players and one winning SB coach, Jon Gruden. For Gruden it was two 1st round picks and two 2nd round picks. They also gave up picks along the way for guys like Keyshawn. The draft is how you build the nucleus/foundation. Imagine trying to do it without those 1st and 2nd rounders?!
    It appears as though we are headed in the right direction. Lets keep trending up.

  11. Trevor Says:

    “as if MRSA was dripping from the walls” ….C’mon IRA! IT WAS DRIPPING FROM THE WALLLS! LITERALLY! those were dark days. Bruce Allen / Gruden tandem was terrible. If Glazers had forced Gruden and Rich Mckay to work together we’d have 3-4 trophies in the case at one Buc.

  12. Architek Says:

    @Pickgrin —-

  13. LargoBuc Says:

    Tmax, there wouldnt be a great defense to “waste” if it wasnt for Dungy and McKay.

  14. BigMacAttack Says:

    Good stuff Ira