Dirk Koetter Sheds Light On Playcaller Decision

September 8th, 2018

Talks playcalling

Man, Dirk Koetter has been irritated in recent days by the media question of who will be playcaller of the Bucs offense on Sunday.

Yesterday, Koetter softened a bit and shed light on a decision that he might actually be agonizing about.

Koetter hopped on SiriusXM NFL Radio “Late Hits” and was asked by host Alex Marvez how both the head coach and offensive coordinator Todd Monken benefited from Monken calling plays in preseason while Koetter focused on other things.

Koetter didn’t answer the question but wanted to explain to fans that choosing the playcaller is a complicated decision that’s part of a comprehensive process.

“That’s something that Todd wanted to do in the preseason and I told him that I’d give him the opportunity. There’s a little bit more of a back story that I don’t really want to get into right now,” Koetter said. But you know, Todd, he’s done a really good job with the playcalling here in the preseason.

“I make no secret about it. Calling plays is something I’ve done my whole career, even back to my high school days. It’s something I enjoy doing. There’s a lot of head coaches in the NFL that do call their own plays. But the fact that Todd’s done a good job; I mean, he’s made it a much tougher decision.

“One thing I think most people don’t really understand … the way we gameplan and the way we put together our call sheet during the week, it’s really inclusive of our entire offensive staff. … So really, you know, this whole ‘who’s calling the plays?’ thing has become maybe a little bit bigger story than it needs to be. I mean, we run the Tampa Bay offense and we got really good players that we’re trying to put in position to do the best that they can on Sunday.”

Joe’s gut says Koetter is the playcaller on Sunday. But after listening to this interview a few times, especially the tone of Koetter’s comments, Joe thinks Koetter is considering Monken for playcaller but knows the negative perceptions that could accompany that move — especially if Koetter decides to take the responsibility back from Monken after a game or two.

Koetter knows very well that coaches like Sean Payton, Mike McCarthy and Andy Reid have all given up playcalling duties only to take them back. Reid has done that multiple times.

42 Responses to “Dirk Koetter Sheds Light On Playcaller Decision”

  1. Buctooth Says:

    To all the Joe Bucs’ Fan’s out there and you can take this to the bank if the first offensive play by Tampa Bay in the game is a run straight up the middle for 1 or 2 yard’s Dirk is calling the game and thats the bottom line.

  2. Sweeptheleg Says:

    Yay. Go dirk with your turtle offense in the red zone.


    Let Monken call the plays dirk. You suck at it.

    You’ve called plays most your life well you suck. Let Monken do it. I don’t wanna see runs right up the middle every first down. Moron.

  3. Buc4evr Says:

    Let Monken call the plays Dirk. You need to learn how to manage the clock and the game on both sides of the ball. We have seen you screw up too many times.

  4. Defense Rules Says:

    @Joe … “Koetter knows very well that coaches like Sean Payton, Mike McCarthy and Andy Reid have all given up playcalling duties only to take them back.” Sean Payton has been a HC for 12 years & has Drew Brees as his QB. Mike McCarthy has been a HC for 13 years & has Aaron Rogers as his QB. Andy Reid has been a HC for 20 years & has had several very experienced QBs to work with. All 3 of those coaches noted have many, many years of experience as HCs AND have had some pretty good field generals to fix their mistakes if they make them.

    Dirk Koetter is a relatively new HC who hasn’t had that same advantage of having a highly experienced field general to fall back on. Jameis is good as a technician, but even you’ve questioned his leadership Joe. Your article yesterday where Hump noted the difference in having a more experienced Fitz out there under center was significant. Fitz isn’t a drew Brees or Aaron Rogers for sure, but his level of experience in reading defenses and modifying plays on the spot to take what the defense gives him says a lot about the advantages HCs like Payton & McCarthy have had over Koetter when calling plays. IOW, Brees & Rogers could probably make just about any play-callers’ plays work better than most young QBs could.

  5. FreeTheSecretWeapon Says:

    Reading between the lines here.

    Coach is saying WE A FAMILY… JABOO can call the plays as he sees fit at the line with TWO Excellent points of view…

    TD Godwin to win the game is my prediction!!!

  6. richbucsfan Says:

    Really, what does it matter who calls the plays…this team is simply not ready for the season. It happens every year…all the hype about who they acquired in FA and the draft, and then when the season begins it is very evident they are thin at key positions, riddled with injuries to key players. Every year, mind you! It is so incredibly frustrating….

  7. FreeTheSecretWeapon Says:

    Ready for the road Bro Specular JoeS… See Ya In The Easy!!!

  8. FairMinded Says:

    Jesus where did all the Koetter haters crawl out from?

  9. adam from ny Says:

    i think the fact that he has grown in the salt and pepper beard means he is trying to be the mature elder statesman…therefore he’s giving the duties up to monken…i know this is a crazy way to look at it, but i do think that wack little beard means something…


  10. Bob in Valrico Says:

    Good teams can and should be able to run up the middle. Since 2016 when Logan Mankins retired we have not had the right players in the right positions to run the ball well. Martin carries took a toll on him and he also was no longer runner
    he was in 2015. We gained almost 2000 yards running that year,mostly up the middle. It is on Koetter to recognize Martin didn”t have it anymore. It is also on Licht to upgrade the O line so we can run the ball well enough to open up the passing game.

  11. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    The kea to great management is to hire great people and then delegate to them. If things were right, the Bucs should run like a fine-toothed comb with Koetter absent.

  12. Bob in Valrico Says:

    There has to be more urgency to to score TD’s early and often in games. IMHO
    Jameis has to get into the flow of the game in the first half. Not expecting him to be turnover free,but he has to realize every turnover has the potential to change the momentum in the game. Fully expect Jameis to come out with a new focus
    and limit his turnovers this year. If he executes properly there should not be a
    need for as many frantic fourth quarter comebacks.

  13. John Says:

    Can we please take a look at some corners asap? Deshawn shead or bashaud breeland? Anyone but ryan smith??

  14. Dirk Diggler Says:

    adam from ny I think your on to something. My father has been adamant since Dirk took over that the team won’t be ready for a deep playoff push until he grows out a goatee. Growing out the beard was the first step!

  15. Michael Brockway Says:

    Todd has done well, with that said if Dirk continues, with his seat on fire maybe he will now have some 🏈🏈’s in his play calling. I think it’s a wise idea to let Todd do it. Because dirk has been way to predictable

  16. Buc believer Says:

    A three year old little girl with Down’s syndrome could call Koetters plays. First and second down runs up the middle for very little gain. (Of course now we have Rojo that would be for a loss) then on third down a pass short of the third down marker then pint. Mix in a few offensive penalties here and there. After the punt Smitty has all CBs play 10 yards off the receiver coupled with our ultra soft run defense the opponent scores there is the game.

  17. BucEmUp Says:

    This is bullshlt….if Koetter doesn’t hand it over to Monken he’s just as bad as Lovie Smith being stubborn and blind. He already can’t see hw.bad.his bff sucks at his job now he wants see how good.the other guy Is?

    WAIT A.MINUTE!!! THAT’S IT!!!! He doesn’t want Monken to look like a stud.offemsive coordinator up in the box.right next to Mike Smith which will only MAGNIFY how bad the booger eater already is. Man I used to have so much confidence in Koetter and it’s so gone now this guy has went from smart and candid to blind, stubborn and putting loyalty over results. I’m disappointed and this just sucks…

  18. adam from ny Says:

    yes BucEmUp

    if he doesn’t relinquish the play calling duties, it’s because of fear…fear that Monkey breath will upstage him

  19. SchwiftyBuc Says:

    Dirk is wrong. After the scripted plays are over it 100 percent becomes the responsibility of the play-caller to decide what to run. And for some reason, Dirk loves to bust out the patented Tony Dungy Run, Run, Pass, Punt offense.\

    Nfl teams game plan according to the other coaches schemes/ tendencies. Dirk’s experience is actually a handicap because he has way too many exploitable tendencies.

  20. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    WHO THE F**K CARES!?!?!?!?!?

    Coach Koetter is 100% right……….this story is completely blown outta proportion

    Hell, I could care less if the the waterboy is calling the plays………….as long as the BUCS win PERIOD

  21. Trench War Says:

    Since Sean Payton, Mike McCarthy and Andy Reid has set the precedence then why is it such a big deal if Koetter allows Monken to call plays? ..let’s continue to beat this dead horse. The media is annoyingly relentless.
    You must not have read what’s actually here. He was ASKED what he’s learned from having Monken call the plays, and he started talking about the part you find annoying. –Joe

  22. DBS Says:

    Won’t matter. The same people will be calling for his head if he gives it up and it does not work or gets worse. Then blame him for giving it up. That is just the way this fan base works anyway.

  23. TheBucsAnthem Says:

    Buc believer Says:

    September 8th, 2018 at 7:16 am

    “A three year old little girl with Down’s syndrome could call Koetters plays. ”

    This is a very messed up and quite offensive comment to make about people suffering from mental handicap or people who care for them

  24. Buccfan37 Says:

    I sense that Koetter feels like his biggest joy and power lies in play calling like any kid clutching his game controller device. Funny but loosen your grip a little.

  25. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    Here is something people are not considering: Monken only called plays with starters for limited periods. The majority of the time was with backups and against backups.

    He also had the benefit of playing a starting QB against backups at times.

    So his success is tainted. Certainly, he should be given more opportunities, but you also have to consider the ramifications of the rest of the league seeing that he can call plays. The Bucs offense is among the best and will only get better this year.

    Monken could be offered a head coaching gig after a successful season this year. So Koetter could lose him if Monken gets too much exposure. That’s got to factor in.

  26. Cobraboy Says:

    Why does it matter? The Bucs offense has been fine while Koetter has been here. It’s the defense that will determine the teams’ fortune, not who calls the plays.

    That said, Monken did a fine job in the pre-season.

  27. The Buc Realist Says:

    Its funny how hardly anyone mentioning that Bruce Arians letting others call the offense during preseasons and He called the plays during the regular season!!!!!! Man, Joe, you have some “Fan” site here!!!!!!!!!!!!

    #trust the coaches!!!!!! Fix the “real” problem!!!!!!!! the roster!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    GO Bucs!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  28. Defense Rules Says:

    @Cobraboy … “The Bucs offense has been fine while Koetter has been here. It’s the defense that will determine the teams’ fortune, not who calls the plays.” Agree with the 2nd statement Cobraboy, but not the 1st. In terms of POINTS SCORED, Koetter’s offenses have averaged #18 in the league (at 21 PPG including the points contributed by the Bucs’ defense). The Saints, Falcons & Panthers have all done considerably better than that. If we expect to get out of the cellar & compete for a playoff berth, we HAVE TO score more points.

    Personally I’d settle for the offense averaging 3 MORE PPG this season, providing that our defense improves & allows 3 LESS PPG this season. That should be enough to get BOTH sides of the ball into the Top-15 in the league, and (hopefully) result in a winning season (as long as we’re consistent game to game).

  29. stpetebucsfan Says:

    Again…Moncken may be a great play caller…but pre season does not indicate that at all.

    The TEAM looked better prepared…from work during the week…and simply EXECUTED better than we saw last year.

    This is not to disparage Moncken it’s to point out the simple fact that in pre season teams do not show much offensively or defensively.

    Here’s is what’s really at play here. I think Koetter and Moncken have a huge amount of respect for each other. I think they both have talent calling the plays.

    But if hypothetically there was some way for JW to win games without passing how long would he be happy? Koetter simply LOVES calling the plays. I think he trusts Moncken but he struggles with giving up what is perhaps his FAVORITE part of football.

    Bottom line for me is what Cobraboy just said. If the team is prepared and they execute it won’t matter who is calling the plays.

    What’s incredibly funny here is some are blasting Koetter for his insistence on running it too much or predictably…while others say his fault is that four deep offense and chucking it downfield too much. So which is it…he wants to pass deep too much or he wants to run it into the line? Or…and I get this…when he decides to do it?

  30. gracelivin Says:

    I think most people on here don’t really understand how play-calling works on the bigger level. You do notice that most of the coaching staff wear head sets, that is so they can talk about which plays each would think will work, they do this for almost every play in every series. Yes the person who does tell the QB the play may have final say but it almost never without input from others and it is usually a consensus agreed upon call. So don’t think it is all on one guy calling plays it is a group effort.

  31. BucEmUp Says:

    Bonzai ….Monkne deployed for 4 and 5 we sets in preseason than Koetter did all last season. More passing on first down than the predictable run up the middle call. No….preseason or not the creativity and speed across the board was clearly different. It looked like Koetters play caking did before he was a head coach..I would prefer Koetter to work on game management and have input on the game plans that Monken will call over juggling all the responsibilities at once. Monken earned the chance and did the better job. You act like preseason football is completley useless. It does have it’s advantages for evaluating both players and coaches

  32. Buc believer Says:

    @Bucs anthem… people like you who are SO freeking sensitive about every little thing someone says is what’s wrong with our country. Ok let me please you and rephrase…. anyone named Buc anthem can see…. is that better? Are you happy now?

  33. Season Is Over Says:

    I still think Koetter needed the practice calling plays in the preseason. The downsides seem to outweigh the good in this situation.

  34. Jmarkbuc Says:


    If things were right, the Bucs should run like a fine-toothed comb with Koetter absent…

    You mean because it runs so well with him here?

  35. Malcolm-Reynolds Says:

    To me Dirk Koetter’s offensive philosophy seems eerily similar to the offense the Raiders used to run way back when with Al Davis. Run it down your throat and chuck it deep. Which actually still works so long as you have the Horses to run that type of offense. Of course He had several All Pro offensive lineman and a great quarterback, tight-end and wide-outs to work with. Now “WE” have the Skill positions to do the same BUT it’s the offensive line that will be the determining factor. To make that work you Must make the defense respect your running game. A good running game can fix Most of your Red-Zone problems. I’m not sure “We” can do the same.

  36. The Buc Realist Says:


    You mean because it runs so well with him here?


    Yes, or did you forget what the Bucs looked like before he got here!!!!!! The 2014 Bucs was one of the worst Buc teams in Buc History!!!!!!!!!!!!

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

  37. Godeep66 Says:

    Lame duck head coach. I am glad he will not be here to coach Will “the thrill” Grier after we draft him as the number one overall pick. It will allow us to dump JW and in turn provide us cap space to resign some key pieces of the team. It will also keep us from having to rebuild all over her again. Will Grier is pro ready.

  38. Jmarkbuc Says:


    The offense is better…until we get to the red zone.

    And The defense? Embarrassing. You realize he’s in charge of all three phases right?

  39. Rod Munch Says:

    I didn’t hear the tone, but from the words it certainly sounds like Dirk is the one making the calls. Ugh. The game scripting at the beginning of games really isn’t the issue, the issue is the 7th first down of the first half were Dirk runs the ball up the middle for the 7th time in the same down and distance. That’s where Dirk is failing, and it’s not what he did when he was in the coaching booth. I hope at the very least Dirk has Monken yelling in his ear telling him to stop doing that, to stop being so ultra predictable.

  40. AlabamaBucsFan Says:

    I don’t have a problem with Koetter. It was the reason why the bucs hired him as a head coach. He was a good offensive coordinator with limited talent. Now he has a full arsenal. The only beef I have with Koetter is his desire to run too many complex plays. I prefer some of the quick slants and short timed passes like New England’s offense. We just don’t have the offensive line to protect he QB long enough to execute the more longer plays.

  41. GP Says:

    Did someone let a mosquito into the room?

  42. Reach87 Says:

    Miserable, crying pack of “fans” go out of their way to criticize everything about the team. Sad. We can win this game. Go Bucs!