Donovan Smith Implies A Tougher Spring In Place Under Bruce Arians

May 7th, 2019

Last spring, Joe had 1-on-1 time to talk football in a unique setting with a Buccaneer who once played for a coach known for running tough, physically taxing practices through spring and summer.

Joe asked the player to compare those sessions to Dirk Koetter’s.

The guy laughed. Koetter’s spring sessions, he explained, were like a high school gym class compared the other head coach’s intense running.

Man, Joe wishes it was an on-the-record conversation. It wasn’t, but the point was very clear.

Things were comparatively soft under Koetter, but Joe can’t know what that really means. Koetter’s Bucs teams were always ready for opening day. In fact, they were 3-0 on opening day under Koetter. And all three were impressive victories, including two on the road.

Still, Joe must wonder whether Koetter being a little soft on his player led to them being soft mentally.

Under Bucco Bruce Arians, Joe has heard things are tougher than last year. Speaking on WDAE-AM 620 yesterday, Donovan Smith emphasized that practice has been tough and he referenced the team running 20 sprints or 20 circuits of some form one day.

He also noted that new offensive line coach Joe Gilbert has everyone’s attention. “Gilbert likes to yell a little bit, but then he smiles about it,” Smith said with a chuckle, referring to how Gilbert gets a little wild while coaching technique.

Bucs players now have had five weeks with Arians and friends, and they’ve got the most compact spring training schedule in the NFL kicking off next week.

Hopefully, Arians finds a way to sharpen the Bucs’ work habits and re-shape their mental approach to the game.

17 Responses to “Donovan Smith Implies A Tougher Spring In Place Under Bruce Arians”

  1. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    It’s not how long you train….but how you train and who is training you……

  2. AKickInTheBucNuts Says:

    We all knew Koetter Kamp was soft.

    And the team showed that.

    Ground some hamburger BA!

  3. lowercaseg Says:

    He needs it

  4. Sport Says:

    TBBF. Couldn’t agree more. Promoting Dirk to head coach was a gamble based upon offensive continuity (QB). I’m not the analyst some of you guys are, but I believe Mike Smiths defense was ok Yr1 with Dirk as HC. For whatever reason, it turned out to be fools gold.

    Dirk was.not equipped to run offense, defense and special teams. The two latter have been suffering for years, outside of a great year from Anger a few yrs back, he then regressed, like everyone else, EXCEPT, our offense between the 20’s. That we in spades, finishing drives, not so much.

    In BA I Trust!

  5. NOSBOS Says:

    Outstanding,long over due. Break’em down in camp and build them back up for regular season. Goes a long way in reducing injuries during the season.

  6. 813bucboi Says:

    this entire organization from the front office to the water boys need tough love…..

    i hope they’re getting their a$$ chewed out….

    GO BUCS!!!

  7. Mike Johnson Says:

    While with the AZ cards, Arians and his staff were know to have highly disciplined training sessions with no BS or music. Music was played. But the right to play that music was earned. He cut down on senseless Cardinal penalties during games.
    Personally, maybe this is what this teams needs. A no nonsense approach peppered by sensitivity inbetween. IF..the best can be brought out in this team. Arians and Bowles can do it. I know for a fact, This Defense will play better this upcoming season.

  8. 941bucsfan Says:

    What do you mean koetter spring practices were too soft?? According to Miko and Brent Grimes, Koetter’s spring and training camps were too Tough on the players, which is why they all were getting hurt. Yall gotta pick a side

  9. NOSBOS Says:

    941 I think the proof is in the pudding years ago camp use to be waaayy more strenuous than it is in this current era of football. Not to mention the game was a lot more physical. And players didn’t get injured nearly as much as they do now. Nothing about the klueless one said tough to me personally.

  10. KenfromCanada Says:

    The camps might have been soft. But all 3 years they were very lucky from an injury stand point. That was Koetter’s philosophy. Yes, the wins didn’t come enough. Are these the reasons for it? Don’t think you can say for sure.

  11. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    “He also noted that new offensive line coach Joe Gilbert has everyone’s attention. “Gilbert likes to yell a little bit, but then he smiles about it,” Smith said with a chuckle, referring to how Gilbert gets a little wild while coaching technique.”

    I seem to remember the same being said for Monte Kiffin years ago. Fans wondered how Monte still had a voice for press conferences.

  12. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    KenfromCanada Says:
    “The camps might have been soft. But all 3 years they were very lucky from an injury stand point.”

    Say what???

    Dude, the last 3 years the Bucs have been listed among teams with the most injuries of all the other teams. Top 5 easily.

    That’s not lucky!

    Heck, in 2017, they had 21 of 22 starters injured throughout the season!

  13. Maze Says:

    Bad news for Donovan

  14. Jean Lafitte Says: Your comment is awaiting moderation Says:

    No more loafing Mr. Smith

  15. BigPoppaBuc Says:

    Work can be unbearable without ping pong. Half these guys probably had to be prescribed antidepressants when Arians said no more loud music, no more ping pong untill these guys start winning. An O-line coach who is passionate about technique and toughness should be a given on any good football team from high school on up. I really hope this roster will respond and not force a total house cleaning next off-season.

  16. JimmyJack Says:

    I still remember the quote from Gruden that he never saw so many dropped balls as when he watched a Dirk team try to prepare for a game.

    The coaching vs talent debate will never resolve but what Gruden said and what this article is saying is that our team does not practice to the standards of a competitive professional team.

    This awsers why our team makes so many dumb foolish mistakes on game day. How many times did we run out of time in the 2 and 1 minute drill?

    So many problems with this team could have been fixed with proper preparation but they simply went unaddressed………..Point fingers all day why we couldn’t score in the red zone but you cannot tell me with a straight face that it’s not a disadvantage to be less prepared then the other team.

    And please Bruce, please……..Make sure you notice what happened to us last year……..Other teams were noticing that we were not taking care of the football and they blatently tried to strip out the ball any chance they got……….This was another problem that went unaddressed and we coughed up the football at a alarming rate because of it. Please don’t let that happen to us again. It was very embarrassing to watch.

  17. Bucnjim Says:

    Saw Arians @ the DB55 charity event and one thing is for sure he is a mans man and pulls no punches. I’m going to cheer my a$$ of for him! He will call out players in a second which I love. No one whether player or employee wants to be called out in front of their peers. He will absolutely do that and more!