Pat O’Connor Expects Little Change With Todd Bowles

April 27th, 2022

Same ol’ same ol’?

The leader of the Bucs’ special teams and former NWA wrestling champion (sarcasm), defensive tackle Pat O’Connor, made an appearance on SiriusXM NFL Radio on “The End Zone” co-hosted by Alex Marvez and Zig Fracassi.

(Did you know that despite missing the final four games of the regular season and all of the playoffs in 2021 with a knee injury, O’Connor still led the Bucs in special teams snaps with 344?)

Being a defensive guy, O’Connor was asked about Todd Bowles named to replace now-retired Bucs Super Bowl-winning coach Bucco Bruce Arians. O’Connor isn’t expecting changes.

“I think it will stick around the same,” O’Connor said. “Coach Bowles and BA [Arians] have been [with] each other and been on the same teams for such a long time.

“If we have a plan, I can say we all trust Coach Bowles and what he has in sight for us and we are just excited to get back to it.”

O’Connor had a cool story. He’s made a few bucks in the NFL primarily as a special teams guy. He’s now entering his fifth season and has never started on defense. In college at Eastern Michigan, O’Connor was a star defensive lineman on a really rotten team and never played one snap of special teams in college.

In his first year in the NFL in Detroit, O’Connor was told to play special teams. He didn’t like it and was confident the coaches knew he had never played a snap of special teams in college.

But O’Connor said he thinks the reason he’s entering his fifth NFL season is he grew up in a family where you always did what you were told, no debate. If you didn’t like your task, you just put your head down, kept your mouth shut and did the best job you could.

O’Connor said that’s how he approached being ordered by the Lions to play special teams.

He’s made a helluva nice little nest egg by following his family commands. And got a Super Bowl ring along the way.

7 Responses to “Pat O’Connor Expects Little Change With Todd Bowles”

  1. PSL Bob Says:

    A hidden gem. Barely recognize the name. ST guys just don’t get the recognition they deserve.

  2. MadMax Says:

    Another special teams guy we could use in the late rounds, if there, LB D’Marco Jackson.

  3. Allbuccedup Says:

    Thats an area where the bucs need to improve on special teams they seem to be in the bottom five every year.

  4. BigMacAttack Says:

    I do expect some changes with TBowl. A lot of strikes and few spares. HC with a real team and a lot of old haters to prove wrong. It’s about to go down in Champa Town. Lightning 3peat and TB12 throwing trophies in the air.

  5. Craig Says:

    More than a few new players, the Bucs really need a new Special Teams coach.

    They have been rotten for too long, though there are some good players there.

    I doubt that the defense will change much, but there is work to be done elsewhere. How Special Teams improves and what fingerprints Bowles leaves on the offense will define his head coaching.

  6. Dooley Says:

    @MadMax with some coaching up D’Marco Jackson could be a day 3 gem

  7. GOB Says:

    Conceptually, I wouldn’t expect much change either. Where bowles will differ is hopefully on the practice field. I hope he gets more out of his position coaches too. BA told everyone, he wasn’t willing to coach his coaches. Tee times will have to suffer. This is an all in year for the bucs, as it’s likely Brady’s last with the team. You’d expect the entire organization to realize this, and all pull in the same direction. Not sure that’s what happened last year. I think players were out of shape and undisciplined, and the coaching staff became complacent last year. I don’t think they collectively understood how difficult it is being the hunted. The Rams are the clear cut favorite in the NFC, in my opinion. That might help the bucs