Dirk Koetter Addresses The Bucs’ Culture Of Losing

November 3rd, 2017

Dirk Koetter speaks

It’s hard to forget Dirk Koetter’s sobering talk to Tampa Bay media in September 2016 about the Bucs having a losing culture.

Koetter was going there again today.

After losing the home opener last season to the Rams and falling to 1-2, Koetter said the following:

“There’s something in our culture — and it’s my job to fix it, along with the coaches — of letting games like this get away. … I wish I could grab it. I’ve been on teams that have had it, and you don’t want to let go of it. But when you don’t have it, it’s hard to figure out what it is.”

Tonight on the Buccaneers Radio Network, Koetter took a call from a fan who is confident Tampa Bay’s current 2-5 record is the result of a losing culture that didn’t leave the building.

Fan caller Muhammad: One of the things you alluded to last year was culture of losing. You attributed it what was going on with the Bucs to that. And when you said that, I agreed with you 100 percent. Because for years I was saying that’s the reason. I think there has been a lack of commitment to excellence and efficiency by this organization prior to you coming here. And I think last year especially, still that was happening. That culture of losing was created because of that you alluded to that. So my question to you coach is, do you think that culture is still happening and that’s the reason that the Bucs are in this situation? Because I see it, but I want to see if you can talk about this, if you agree with me on that.

Dirk Koetter: Well, that’s an excellent observation by Muhammad. And I thought, I thought that we kicked it last year, you know. I thought we were over that. We had an excellent offseason. We’ve got really good leadership from our players. So here we are. Here we are on this losing streak. And, you know, I don’t want to believe it’s culture; I really don’t. And I’m around these guys every day. But at the same time we have lost four in a row; you can’t hide from that. I want to believe that’s not what the reason is because we’ve worked very hard to overcome that. But until you overcome it consistently, and I’m a part of that, so I’m not trying to point a finger at anybody else. I’m a part of that, all the coaches are and the players are as well. I hope that’s not what it is, but I don’t have a steadfast answer as to what it is right now other than the one thing that definitely shows up on tape is we’re just not playing consistent enough across the board. … When we get back to playing good solid football in all three phases, I think the wins will come back.

Candid and unsettling stuff there from Koetter.

This was a topic two Mondays ago on the Monday Morning Joe podcast; the Bucs simply and collectively have lost the winning intangibles that are necessary in every sport on the planet. It’s obvious.

The only fix is a win. And if Koetter can’t get at least one Sunday against the Saints or at home versus the Jets the following week, then Team Glazer very likely starts thinking (keyword: thinking) about making the losing culture the responsibility of a new head coach.

30 Responses to “Dirk Koetter Addresses The Bucs’ Culture Of Losing”

  1. LakeLand Says:

    I have been a Buc fan since 1975, when Hugh Culverhouse was awarded the franchise. 42 years of suffering and losing has taking a toll on the long time Buc fans. It’s not like we hope they lose, but losing is a tradition with the Bucs. Every off season there is the annual hype. And then come the annual let down, then come the changes. I just call it the way I see it, like I have for the past 42 years.But this season is the greatest let down. The Bucs went 9-7 last season and was close to being a playoff team. They went into the off season with the most cap space of any team (over $62 Million). And they could have created more if they had released Doug Martin and a few others. They had all of their draft picks.

    There is no excuse for this team to be 2-5

    The fans has every right to be pissed

  2. jimmy Says:

    Paging TMax. You have been tee’ed up!

  3. Defense Rules Says:

    ‘The only fix is a win?’ Actually, since we’re 2-5 and have lost 4 in a row, seems to me that we need more than ‘a win’. We need a winning streak like we pulled off last year (and yes, I recognize that every winning streak starts with 1 win). Personally don’t think this defense is capable of playing up to the same level they did during last year’s streak (tougher schedule, several different starters). But I do think that this Bucs’ offense is capable of leading us on a winning streak. Put up more points (preferably 30-35 or more), control the TOP, and win the turnover battle. How hard can it be? Coaches & players might be overthinking it … just get pissed & start playing some smash-mouth football for a change.

  4. Lamarcus Says:

    Losing culture is public enemy number 1. These holdovers are the culprit. Bring some winners in and u will see a change.

  5. The Buc Realist Says:

    “I think there has been a lack of commitment to excellence and efficiency by this organization”

    Maybe start with the owner’s ” Commitment to advertise”!!!!!!!!!!!! The NFL reality show that was force on the team is why I am giving a full pass this year, just as I stated when they were awarded (forced) to have to do!!!!!

    Word on the street that a front office was asked if they would do hard knocks again and the answer was a quick “Hell No”!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Still, their are wins still left on the schedule!!! And I will be watching My Bucs!!!!! Just know that winning starts from the top and takes full commitment from everyone!!!!!!! lesson learned hopefully!!!!!!!!!

    Go Bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Buc believer Says:

    Your DAMN straight Dirk there is a losing culture in the locker room and it will always be there until that Batman loving I want everyone to see what a great guy I am phony GMC finally has his walking papers handed to him and the locks changed so he can’t get back in!

  7. Captain Big Stick Says:

    I believe in you Coach Koetter.. I really hope that Coach gets one more season after this, I think he has earned three years to show what he can do. This season is probably lost though and I am afraid it will be all she wrote if this crap team can’t get their act together. We are in this situation because of poor execution at critical times across the board. I don’t blame the coaches for that, I blame our players who have no shame in saying that they came out “flat” time after time..


  8. Captain Big Stick Says:

    Why am I getting moderated?

  9. Rob Says:

    With the abysmal pass rush the Bucs have this year, opposing quarterbacks simply go into future HOF mode and surgically carve apart our defense. It doesn’t really matter who the corners or safeties are because any decent NFL quarterback with time can find the first/second/third option. I think the season is lost and we have zero hope to suddenly have a pass rush. I think the defensive lineman are trying but they simply lake the skill to get to the quarterback. This is not rocket science. Look what the good teams are doing. They get after the opposing quarterbacks and wreak havoc. When was the last time we really got after any opposing quarterback? Torture to watch my Bucs get dismantled each week. We have to go after a few free agent pass rushing specialists and throw money at them until we find a few serviceable ones out there. Hoping to develop one has backfired on this team so many times I lost count. Anyway, maybe next year lol. Go Bucs!

  10. Lamarcus Says:

    Adding djax and baker didn’t help the culture either

  11. DB55 Says:

    Do yourselves a favor a go to Twitter and look up @thekid_suds for the answer to this question. It’s clear as day to EVERYONE except for the “real fans”.

  12. Reach87 Says:

    Coach and defenserules nailed it yet some posers want to twist everything to mccoy. Thats what is right in front if your face. Exact (exact) same logic, fingerpointing and crying that led to 40 plus years of changing coaches (even gruden was dogged by you lot), searching for a qb (then less than 3 years later calling him a bum), and in fact making this an overall miserable, negative fan base few free agents want to come to. You moan that you have a right to be impatient and thats a fact. Just like everything, how you express your impatience (twisting it towards quality players who go hard every sunday and are leaders of men) reflects more on you than them. Mccoy doesn’t play offense. Winston doesn’t play cornerback, martin doesn’t play tackle. TWisting every miscue to these players is an infantile reaction to your frustration, shows zero mental agility, and IMO is pitifull. We need to play better across the board and we need to manage the game better across the board. We will this year. Bo Bucs!

  13. Lamarcus Says:


    In every workplace and every business there is a culture. Culture building starts with relationships. O3s will help build those relationships. So there is something definitely wrong with the relationships these guys are having -if there is an actual bad culture there. Not on the same page, communication is the result of something there. We see this more outta the defense (which is the vets of the team,mostly) there just something not clicking. No one is stepping up and take it until Kwon comes back. This is y I put alot of pressure to GMC. I would think he just gets tired of losing? No. Is he a leader? Yes. ExperiencING too much losing will take the dog out of someone and won’t care to win

  14. Buccaneer Bill Says:

    Right on Reach!

    You don’t win routinely by changing coaches consistently. Koetter is making improvements. Smith was everyone’s hero at the end of last season. These guys haven’t changed.

    Have some patience, and give these guys a chance. We’ve got good coaches. We’ve got good players. The wins will come. Have some friggin faith!

  15. EA Says:

    Jim Harbaugh will squeeze whatever talent these guys have, he will not tolerate soft play and coming out flat every week. San Fran was one of the most physical Teams when he was a coach.
    Poor Dirk is admitting he has no answer with a loaded offense and most guys healthy, I like his honesty but… next.
    This team needs a strong leader at the head coaching position, I agree with Ian Beckles 100%, no one will follow Winston and his pep talk unless he leads by example, and I think that has been evident this year. Everyone came out and said JW is our leader the rookie year, G-Mac came out and said this is JW’s team… why ? Jameis may get there one day but that has to be proven on the field, respect is earned…. this team has no veteran leadership, GMC has been here the longest and doesn’t want that role, Free agents seems like come here for the weather and set up for retirement. I’m tired of changing coaches every couple of years but it has to be done unless something dramatic happens the rest of the season which I doubt.

  16. Walktheplank Says:

    Could we trade Djax for a decent pass rusher? Let see what barber can do at running back, with jquizz. Trade Martin for a decent CB? Maybe another team needs a good wr, and rb.

  17. ClodHopper Says:

    “When we get back to playing good solid football in all three phases, I think the wins will come back”

    You don’t say?

  18. westernbuc Says:

    lol Harbaugh gets run out of every town he’s in. Chucky hasn’t coached in ten years, barring Belicheat becomes available I’m rolling with Koetter for at least another year

  19. Smokeymountainbucfan Says:

    @walktheplank Trade deadline is gone… I’d definitely trade Martin,they should have cut his ass when they had the chance. Could’ve voided his contract and not owed him a dime. I’d hang on to DJax and see how our new coach will handle all the freaking weapons we do have!

  20. Pelbuc Says:

    Lakelandbuc is spot on. I too have been a fan since 75 and this year is the biggest con job of all. The GM is a fraud and they sent the wrong message by re-signing Martin and adding Baker. Tired of drinking the cool aid. Hope the players shut up, quick making excuses and play with a purpose. Even throughout most if the bad years, the defense played hard. Now it’s a joke.

  21. bucster Says:

    Dirk, carrying his little fu**ing toothpick.

  22. Wewantgruden Says:

    The only way to fix it is to bring Gruden in ASAP.

  23. TouchDownTampaBay Says:

    I also have been a fan since the very beginning. Haven’t missed a game that was televised since day 1. Right now I am 50/50 on watching the game tomorrow. I even stuck with them and watched the last games of the Rah Rah era which was actually the most pathetic football I have ever witnessed. This year though I am just fed up. I sat their last week getting sunburned watching this team quit against the Panthers and show zero fire. Tired of the losing but there seems to be no end in sight.

  24. JMarkBuc Says:

    Blah blah blah DK. The team is a reflection of the coaching staff.,,you want a bad ass team? You gotta be a bad ass coaching staff. This staff is weak and players know it. DK’s latest gems:

    We are trying to teach our defense to be aware of the sticks

    I don’t really know why our corners play nine yards off the ball..

    We are wringing our hands too about. JWs shoulder,
    Bad asses don’t talk like this..C’mon man!

  25. Not there yet Says:

    Leadership along the defensive line would have transformed the defense. No one is hungry because they are all well fed

  26. Mike Johnson Says:

    Many yrs ago when the Bucs had Bill Parcels on the hook for the coaching job, he wanted total control of everything. He said it was the only way he knew how to fix the culture of Losing. The Bucs told him, screw you. no thnaks. Biggest mistake we ever made.

  27. I Bleed Red Says:

    two words ….MM

  28. Buc1987 Says:

    I lived through Schiano’s 0-8 start….this ain’t crap.

  29. Buc1987 Says:

    LakeLand Says:

    “There is no excuse for this team to be 2-5

    The fans has every right to be pissed”

    But not you….you don’t have every right. Unless this wasn’t you back in September…

    LakeLandBuc Says:
    September 25th, 2017 at 12:36 am

    ‘I predicted a 7-9 season, I’m sticking with my prediction.”

    Someone that didn’t expect much to begin with certainly can’t be let down.

  30. Jimmy T Says:

    There it is. EA blaming Winston. What a joke. Last year in KC Winston was 12-16 on 3rd downs, if it was 3rd and 4 they got 5, if it was 3rd and 7 they got 8. They sustained drives. This year if it is 3rd and 3 they call a 20 yard pass play w and empty backfield. That’s NOT Jameis. This offense is on KOETTER . It does resemble last year. Against Carolina on the road we ran 35 times and won. This year we abandon the run. Let’s go back to what made this offense control the ball, not throwing 7 freaking bombs a game to satisfy djax. Keep this crappy defense off the field and keep Bree’s off the field and maybe they can win. But please stop blaming Jameis for everything wrong w this team.