Bruce Arians And Playcalling

August 22nd, 2019

There were reports earlier this summer that Team Glazer, when they talked turkey in hiring a new coach in January, wasn’t exactly giddy about Bucco Bruce Arians not calling plays for his offense.

It seems, the genesis of this series of events began with fellow NFL owner Michael Bidwill.

The big cheese of the Cardinals last offseason fired his coaching staff, which included current Bucs offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich. So with Leftwich pining for work, he was ripe to be picked up by Arians.

And in a conversation with Albert Breer of when Breer did his drive-by at One Buc Palace earlier this month, Arians told Breer the only way he would have given up playcalling duties is if Leftwich replaced him.

“That was one of the decisions I made in the (2018) offseason, where it was if I went back in the right situation, and Byron was available, I’d have him do it,” Arians told me. “If Byron was not available, I’d be calling them, because I haven’t trained anybody else.”

Now Joe has already stated (and it really bothers some Bucs fans but Joe is being fully genuine) Leftwich has something to prove after he was part of a total disaster offensively in Arizona, which included the meltdown of a quarterback picked in the first round.

Still, it is difficult for Joe to believe Arians will not be heavily involved in developing offensive gameplans each week. And you just know Arians will be in Leftwich’s ear on gameday. So while Leftwich may be physically calling the plays, it’s reasonable to assume Arians will direct Leftwich what type of plays to call and when.

It sort of reminds Joe about a scene in one of the greatest movies ever made, “Patton.” Gen. George Patton was dealing with a bruised ego. He thought he won a battle in North Africa over famed German tank commander “The Desert Fox,” Erwin Rommel. But Rommel was in Berlin dealing with an ear infection.

An aide to Patton consoled him, “If you have beaten Rommel’s plan, you have defeated Rommel.”

There is no question in Joe’s mind the offensive gameplans will be Arians’. Leftwich will be the one directed to execute them.

55 Responses to “Bruce Arians And Playcalling”

  1. tmaxcon Says:

    love me some Patton…. I’d love Patton’s take on the current bucs basement title streak.

  2. stpetebucsfan Says:

    Great analogy from the Patton movie. Great movie about a very complex character. Let’s hope BA’s final swan song is like Patton’s roar through Europe after getting reinstated. His guys won the Battle of the Bulge.

  3. Magadude Says:

    My question is if BL is stinking up the play calling (sure, he may be great), how far does BA let it go before he intervenes? BA may view this as a good OJT and growth opportunity for BL. The Glazers are probably anything BUT about that part. Will BA make adjustments as needed after two losses, four losses attributed in part of game plan/play calling? More? No matter what, BA walks away much richer and knows in his heart he gave a fairly new OC a shot to get better. Bucs fans would be left with another WTF year and be out of the playoff hunt (yet again) before Halloween. Hope this doesn’t happen.

  4. Joe Says:

    I’d love Patton’s take on the current bucs basement title streak.

    Mike Smith would have been slapped and run off quite quickly.

    Patton would have likely pulled out his ivory-handled pistol on Lovie for cutting Darrelle Revis and Donald Penn.

  5. Kobe Faker Says:

    “Tampa Bay Bucs Winning Model

    2018 Tampa Bay 5-11

    Hire fired coaching staffs of

    2018 NY Jets 4-12
    2018 Ari Cards 3-13

    add red lipstick”

    Kobe Faker

  6. tmaxcon Says:

    joe now we agree that would have been proper accountability in both cases….

    two mistakes in ww2 we should have let patton eat Russia for lunch. secondly, we should have made france a state it would have been cheaper in the long and the people would not be so annoying and such pansy arses.

  7. SCBucsFan Says:

    And I wonder what Patton would make of all the whining in this forum

  8. tmaxcon Says:

    SCBucsFan Says:
    August 22nd, 2019 at 12:49 pm
    And I wonder what Patton would make of all the whining in this forum

    you are right he would be eating the delusional optimists lunch for lowering their standards accepting failure and trying to raise mediocrity to legendary status… you’d file #metoo complaint he’d be so far up your arse over your laughable defense of cancer93 and the excuses you made to justify your man crush on captain blowout the face of the basement years.

    sc thanks for always allowing me free rent in that wide open space you call a head….

  9. Cobraboy Says:

    Who calls the plays is less important than who designs the Game plan which includes the plays.

  10. tmaxcon Says:


    after trump buys greenland I am going to make and offer for SC… I’ll buy your a beer when I close or would you prefer a wine cooler

  11. Joe Says:

    two mistakes in ww2 we should have let patton eat Russia for lunch.

    Nah, may too many casualties… and for what? Eisenhower and those above made the right call there. Let the Russians take Berlin if they wanted the casualties, and clearly Stalin didn’t give a damn about casualties.

    Two biggest mistakes?

    1. Not letting Patton run operations in Europe after the Normandy landings. War would have been over quicker. What did Monty contribute other than being a massive pain in the arse?

    2. Island hopping in the final months of the Pacific theatre. Hierarchy knew the atom bomb was coming. Some of those islands taken near the end of the war came at a terrible cost to the Navy (which included Marines). Instead of invading, should have just blockaded those pieces of coral. As MacArthur once said of island hopping, “Starvation is my ally.”

    Honorable mention: Not invading Europe sooner. Should have been invaded when Germany had so many troops and resources in North Africa. By waiting a year, allowed Germany to pull out of North Africa and build up troops and defenses and resources in France. But Churchill never really wanted to invade France.

  12. tmaxcon Says:

    Joe, very valid points. especially #2 tremendous blood shed on both sides. Japanese were brutal defending those territories. not enough credit goes to the dudes in the pacific theater.

  13. Tye Says:

    The time is quickly approaching for this train to leave the station, destined to become one of this seasons train wrecks… should be entertaining!

  14. Joe Says:


    Thinking it “The Pacific” but after the war a Marine who fought in the island hopping and a former army infantryman who served in Europe were talking. Army guy asked the Marine where he served. When the Marine answered with the islands he fought on, army vet shook his head and said, “At least we had women.”

  15. Bradentonbuc Says:

    For once I actually agree with you tmaxcon. Can’t believe it’s about what we should have done during ww2. And super interesting rebuttal regarding your key mistakes, Joe
    Or is a bigger mistake not supporting Chiang Kai-chek enough and preventing China falling to communism?

  16. Joe Says:


    Fair point.

  17. tmaxcon Says:

    that’s awesome!

  18. Bradentonbuc Says:

    Also, does Leftwich have a leash for play calling duties? I imagine it won’t be taken away by arians unless Leftwich is totally screwing up. Does Arians give him the full year to figure it out or does he pull the plug early to help salvage a season if it’s going poorly

  19. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    Lets hope it’s more like Patton than Custer……

  20. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    So….here is the question….

    Is calling the plays the same thing as deciding what the play will be then relaying that to the QB?…..or could it be relayed to Byron…..then to the QB….

    I suspect it will be a mixture of both….

  21. 1sparkybuc Says:

    I would not be taking war strategy advice from anyone who calls Tony Dungy a clown. Matter of fact, advice on any subject.

  22. Loyaltotheend Section 312 Says:

    Arians will take back play calling by mid season

  23. 813bucboi Says:


    rosen cant even beat out fitz….lol…

    BL is more than qualified….how can someone praise BA but question his staff or decisions…..was he not with him before?…lol…

    GO BUCS!!!!!

  24. Tampabuscsbro Says:

    Why does Joe keep trashing Leftwhich for the Chernobyl meltdown that was the Arizona cardinals last year. They had two awful quarterbacks when the offensive coordinator gets fired less then two months into the season the guy taking over is 100% set up to fail. It’s like blaming Mark Duffner solely for the state of our defense last year.

  25. Bobby M. Says:

    Arians gets paid whether he’s game planning or golfing….He’s chilling and Leftwich is fighting for a check.

  26. crazyBucsCL Says:

    @ Kobe Faker
    “Tampa Bay Bucs Winning Model

    2018 Tampa Bay 5-11

    Hire fired coaching staffs of

    2018 NY Jets 4-12
    2018 Ari Cards 3-13

    add red lipstick”

    that is how the season is going to elapses for us…. great analogy …
    giving a chance his buddies to make some money..

    BA = LovieS 2.0

  27. Bradentonbuc Says:

    @1sparky sometimes hyper aggression is a good thing. As a historical corollary you can thank Sherman’s hyper-aggression for beating the south during the civil war. Unless you have points you can bring up that counter the general thrust of what was said, hyper aggression in war and quality analysis of a football coach are two different things.
    Hopefully Arians does bring the ‘attack mode’ mentality

  28. tmaxcon Says:

    1sparkybuc Says:
    August 22nd, 2019 at 2:03 pm

    I would not be taking war strategy advice from anyone who calls Tony Dungy a clown. Matter of fact, advice on any subject.

    not sure i’d take any advice from a fanboy that worships a religious hypocrite who failed in Tampa and set the franchise back by wasting 6 years of sapps prime… scoreboard proves it… 2 post season wins in 6 years is laughable not legendary. blindly following people without accepting their obvious faults is creepy dude!!!! not to mention you giving him credit for being great when he failed. dungy coached a bad team with a highly ranked defense. ravens won with dilfer and dungy the clown could not those are facts pal… he had arguably the greatest qb in nfl history and one of the most lethal offenses the nfl has ever witnessed and still has a career losing post season record. the dude is popular but hardly great… no one confuses popularity with greatness like bucfan.

  29. Hodad Says:

    Thanks for the history lessen, but back to the Glazers being upset BA isn’t calling the plays. You would think they would’ve learned from Keotter calling plays, that he was oblivious to the disaster the rest of the team was around him. He said he didn’t involve himself with the defense, no kidding, it showed.

  30. ou812 Says:

    Sometimes hyper aggression leads to a Pyrrhic victory! No body wins .Afghanistan?

  31. miken Says:

    @joe… one helluva a post with a good history leson in comments.
    BA has Lefty trained well and Moore in to help too… this O will be clicking!

  32. Joe Says:

    Thanks miken!

  33. Bradentonbuc Says:

    Sometimes it does! Sometimes Fabian tactics are better. Best defense is a good offense/defense wins championships. It’s almost like no one strategy is better then another and is only best applied in certain situations.
    It would seem no risk it no biscuit is the strategy at play now for the bucs. Here’s to hoping it’s applied deftly

  34. Joe Says:

    Why does Joe keep trashing Leftwhich for the Chernobyl meltdown that was the Arizona cardinals last year.

    Are you suggesting Leftwich, the QB coach and later OC, is totally blameless? He should skate with zero responsibility? Why?

  35. Jean Lafitte Says:

    And why does any of this matter who’s calling plays? The way Joe has described Leftwich, if things go great it will be because of BA, and if not? It will be because of Leftwich who mentored a rookie QB who struggled in Arizona. Lay off the booze my friend. Let’s search for some positive content.

  36. Tampabuscsbro Says:

    I’m not saying he gets 0 responsibility I am saying he was set up to fail if he is given garbage he wouldn’t be able to produce anything but garbage. The team was already in full meltdown by the time he was promoted and people seem to hold him responsible like it was mostly his fault around here.

  37. Lamarcus Says:

    If Rosen beats out Fitz then I’ll blame Leftwich. But it’s looking like Rosen is a bust and looks like I’m giving Left a pass

  38. Dewey Selmon Says:

    I’m not really concerned about the offense, I just want a improved defense and I will be watching to see what the halftime adjustments are. Something we haven’t see in years. I also trust BA not to sheet the bed at the end of halves/games. Something Koetter did more than once.

  39. Dewey Selmon Says:

    Oh Yeah, the kicking game and specials teams will be improved. It will win us 2 games.

  40. JimmyJack Says:

    It is fair to question Leftwitch in regards to Rosen. I think Joe has put too much blame on Leftwich in previsous articles. This article reads much more fair IMO saying that Leftwitch deserves at least partial blame.

    How much blame Leftwitch deserves is anybody’s guess but it does speak volumes to me that Arizona fired their OC midseason and promoted Byron. Sure sounds like the Front Office mostly blamed the OC…….They must have though Byron was doing a good job. Otherwise, why promote him?

  41. Kobe Faker Says:

    Kobe was once worried

    but fear not

    Ive seen BA on the sidelines and he has the playsheet in his hands. He is communicating with Leftfoot and the guys in the sky. Most of the gameplanning and the plays are worked out during the week

    There is no doubt that BA is in control of the offense

    rest assured”

    Kobe Faker

  42. 0-26 survivor Says:

    Have read the joe’s site since day one told the wife i would never read it again after recent licht signing but this site is like a drug just pulls u in regarding the pacific campaign and the hierarchy knowing about a bomb coming oppenheimer and the boys first tested bomb on july 16 1945 and per his bio had no idea if ‘the device’ would work many of the scientists believed it would ignite the atmosphere and destroy the planet they had to invade guam and tinian for the b-29 bases and wanted iwo for an emergency field for the bombers on the 3,000 mile roundtrip to the empire that was feb 19 ’45 long before a bomb success intelligence said defense was weak and would only take a short time so much for intelligence Okinawa was next tough battle was expected and received but invaded in april again long before a bomb outcome as for starvation never would have happened heck after 2 cities were a bombed the fanatical army rouges were trying to steal emperors speech recording of the surrender as the still had 2 million men armed and wanted to continue war indefinitely sorry to be so long didn’t even get into eto love the site been a bucfan since day 1 1976 Leroy selmon best pick ever god rest his soul

  43. Buc1987 Says:


    LMAO Kobe you finally made me laugh.

    That’s NOT an easy thing to do.

  44. BucEmUp Says:

    As I mentioned on a recent post, there is NO excuse for this offense to regress. We all loved Humph but he is not an all star. He didn’t make this offense. and Desean being gone is an improvement.

    IF…IF it regresses ( I am more than happy to let Byron get his shot) BA needs to act quickly. This offense doesn’t need time to gel. It should come out swinging and firing on all cylinders week one.

    BA was a dream come true hire ( for me anyway) but this is the first time in his career he will not be calling the plays. Game planning is one thing, calling something else in the moment is another. Having a feel for the game and what to do to counter opposing defenses cannot be taught. That instinct and part of his DNA.

    We will see but count me in as highly skeptical until proven otherwise. This better be aggressive with lots of screens and slants. Run up the middle on every first down and two runs up the middle on 1st and second and a pass on third in goal line situations will have me making a trip to Walmart for a new Vizio.


  45. Jean Lafitte Says:

    It’s no more Leftwich’s fault that Rosen struggled as a rookie, than it’s Lovie’s, or Koetter’s fault JW has had 75 turnovers. At times the player has to own most the blame, not the coach. I think Leftwich will have autonomy but BA will stay involved. Matter of fact, I hope there is a time where JW can make audibles himself without using any scripted plays. That’s a sign of becoming a master at the QB position. Read and audible like the elites.

  46. Pittsshore Says:

    You could have Mike Martz calling the plays and it would not matter when you have America’s Ignorant QB at the helm. Let’s just hope we get Tua next year.

  47. Buccfan37 Says:

    The plans for three world wars were made over a hundred years ago. All wars are banker wars.

  48. NOSBOS Says:

    Shut yodumb @$$ pittshore I mean d**ksore. That ignorant young man about to sign a 100 million dollar deal. I’ll ask again, will you ever be able to say that???

  49. webster Says:

    @ joe

    You really need to read the article chronicling the leftwich/arians dynamic that was published today. In arians own words, he does not go into offensive meetings and he lets leftwich run everything because he knows how i want things done and how i think. I stay in my office because it gives me more time to diagnos opponents and make roster decisions. I wont link the article but a quick google search will bring it up. Its a great read about the state of coaching in the nfl. It will give the idiots on this board a little insight into the comments jameis made about relating to leftwich.

  50. Joe Says:

    planet they had to invade guam and tinian for the b-29 bases and wanted iwo for an emergency field

    Knew about that. Watched a documentary not long ago about bombing Japan and not sure if it was one of those islands or Okinawa that was invaded to build airfields but one of those islands was never used as an airstrip.

  51. XpfcWintergreen2 Says:

    Be careful who you praise based on who some Hollywood movie maker glorifies. Dig a little deeper.

    I had similar variants of the same story told to me unasked by two different unconnected WWII vets who served in Europe. I was told in so many words that Patton was “fragged” by someone who served under him only when they could catch up with him after the war’s end. His pace was very brutal to the soldiers who served under him. He was not loved. The was the scuttlebut that came “through the grapevine” at the time of his death in Europe.

    Alternatively, there is an entirely different story out there that says he was assassinated by people in the O.S.S (predecessor to the CIA) because he was opposed to bringing hundreds of ex Nazis to America (such as Wernher Von Braun) to the United States to help us develop our missile program.

    Not saying any of this is it was true at all. Believe whatever you want.

  52. Jim Says:

    Tmax, stick to football,..seriously.

  53. Barack's Crack Pipe Says:

    I will always believe that Patton was killed because of his desire to finish the Soviet Union. It would have saved upwards of a hundred million people’s lives, who were later purged in eastern Europe. I always am ashamed of the way that we just gave up on those people–and also abandoned the freedom fighters in China. Another 100 million people murdered in the name of “progress” and socialism.

    The world could be a much better place today.

    Hey Joe, I was stationed in Okinawa on a small Marine base called Camp Hansen. The main north-south street on that base was once the Air Force runway originally built for use against Japan. Fun fact. 🙂

  54. Barack's Crack Pipe Says:

    “All wars are banker wars.”

    Yes. I believe that quote came from General Smedly Butler, a Marine hero of WWI. He is also a hero for stopping a bankster/fascist coup attempt right here in the United States, though very few even know about that, since the perpetrators still pretty much control much of culture, and they don’t want us to be taught about it. General Butler testified in front of Congress, exposing all of the criminal conspirators, and nobody was ever prosecuted. Just like today.

  55. Harry in Costa Rica Says:

    @Tmax says:
    two mistakes in ww2 we should have let patton eat Russia for lunch. secondly, we should have made france a state it would have been cheaper in the long and the people would not be so annoying and such pansy arses.

    Dude, that is so right!!