What Is Todd Bowles Really Like?

October 5th, 2023

Caught ya’ coach!

Joe gets this often on social media: Fans don’t respect Bucs coach Todd Bowles because he’s as stoic as they come on the sidelines during games.

Joe figures fans want to see coaches demonstrate they care as much about winning as the fans do. It’s one reason why Chucky was so popular, aside from winning a Super Bowl for the Bucs, of course.

Chucky would stomp and holler and give people hell. Sort of like the NFL’s Yosemite Sam. That played well with Bucs fans. Bruce Arians was the same way.

Bowles is very much an animated man. But he doesn’t show it when the camera is on him. His quiet public demeanor almost seems like an act to Joe, like it’s something he learned from Joe Gibbs or Bill Parcells. He sure didn’t learn that from Arians.

Away from a camera, Bowles has a big, engaging personality. Once in a great while when the cameras are rolling he lets it slip out. Not often.

So what is Bowles like behind the scenes at One Buc Palace? Bucs AC/DC-loving general manager Jason Licht painted the picture of a player’s coach with high standards who often has players from both sides of the ball in his office talking ball on their own time, not scheduled sitdowns.

Sometimes the X’s and O’s sessions get so intense they order food to continue brainstorming.

Licht explained on Peter Schrager’s podcast “The Season.

“He’s a great teacher,” Licht said, admitting he mind melds daily with Bowles on various subjects. “It’s not uncommon for him to have the entire secondary in his office sprawled out on couches having food delivered up there and him just having a session with them. Going over tape and talking [ball].

“It’s become a weekly routine, in his office, not in a meeting room. It’s all positions. You’ll see offensive players.

“He has a very soothing way about him — he’s very fiery behind the scenes as well.”

Joe has never seen Bowles PO’ed, only visibly frustrated by a few media questions. But Joe heard about Bowles getting angry.

When Joe’s path crosses with Bowles, the head coach almost always has a smile and is quick to laugh — not snicker but guffaw with a booming voice.

So when Joe reads missives from fans knocking Bowles on social media for being too laid back in his demeanor, Joe cringes. Joe only wishes fans could see Bowles behind the scenes.

He’s anything but a wallflower.

37 Responses to “What Is Todd Bowles Really Like?”

  1. Bucs Fan from Philly Says:

    I think this is the type of context needed or should be linked to when you provide those random confidence polls Joe. We know he’s a players coach and by evidence of these first four weeks, the team is fighting for him. He’s a locker room guy and the Bucs YouTube clips don’t capture it as much. This article talks about the Todd we don’t see. So then confidence polls should have a link to this article for those who think he’s a wallflower and don’t have the locker room support behind him.

  2. '79 Defense Says:

    I suppose this moment in time is the part of the continual ebb and flow of many NFL coaches.

    Bowles as DC of Super Bowl winning Bucs team – We’re so lucky we got this guy! (and the same was pretty much said of Leftwich)

    Bowles dials up a blitz at the end of Rams playoff game – This guy stinks! We should have won another SB!

    3-1 start, which seemed unlikely — This guy is actually pretty cool.

    To be continued…

  3. G-Buc Says:

    Watch the recent “In the Current” on YouTube. See coach’s intense pregame speech on throwing the first punch in the game. His intensity was outstanding! It surprised me!
    If that is Bowles true demeanor… I like it!

    Never been a huge fan! But I’m coming around.
    Good for you coach. But be yourself. The fans, media, & NFL deserve to see the real you. It’s clearly more authentic and better television then the act your putting on!

  4. Duane Says:

    Amazing the shallow thinking by so many fans.

    Anyone paying attention to NFL football for any time knows that the coach’s demeanor on the sideline or in front of the media has zero relationship to how successful and skilled a coach is. Name several of the very best, longest tenured NFL coaches – Bill Belichick, Andy Reid, Tom Landry, etc. were practiced stone faces yet won a hell of a lot of games and championships. And others, like Gruden Pete Carroll were and are highly animated and also won a hell of a lot of games and championships.

    What matters is how effective the head coach and his staff are at getting the most from his players. And also in interacting with the GM to select and keep the best players available.

  5. Brandon Says:

    Folks that have never played the game cry about how he doesn’t get anyone fired up… sorry, people. That’s great for the first two plays of the game and in movies. Getting players fired up doesn’t win games. Getting them prepared and focused does.

  6. Salary Cap Hell Says:

    thx for the explanation Joe, I had my doubts , but you helped to put perspective on it. Love the part where he breaks down film with everyone … thats passion and thats him loving what he does .

  7. BobbyuBucsFan Says:

    Joe, Is there still a statue of Guden in the lobby of One Buc Place or did that get pulled too?

  8. geno711 Says:

    Stoicism is such a great philosophy that is so misunderstood in today’s society.
    In part because of what we define as a “stoic” personality.

    It really was part of a great Greek culture first adopted 300 years BC.

    The philosophy emphasizes the importance of self-control and logic and advocates that one can detach themselves from the emotions of external events outside our control.

    It suggests that people should focus on what they can control and accept what they cannot control.

    It suggested that no matter the circumstances, a man should strive to be moral, ethical and charitable to others.

    “Waste no more time arguing what a good man should be. Be One.” – Marcus Aurelius

    Todd Bowles appears to be one of those guys.

  9. President Canales Says:

    Winning is the measuring stick. Bowles has not done a lot of that as an HC.
    So for fans to kill him and pick apart his demeanor or lack of enthusiasm is only because he has not won!

    Clearly he can coach. All coaches that make it to the show can do that.
    But only a few win and win consistently. For HC Bowles to not translate his knowledge and style into wins… well that leaves the door open to the doubters.

    Such is the game he plays. No remorse for him.
    If you can’t stand the heat…

  10. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    TBBF prefers the more passionate …animated coaches like Gruden & Ariahs…..they also won SBs for us……when Todd wins the SB then I’ll start liking his type.

  11. Leighroy Says:

    “guffaw” – great vocab word today!

  12. orlbucfan Says:

    I started paying attention to Bowles when he got the nightmare Jets HC job. I read he was a defensive mind. It reminded me of Tony Dungy. When he came here with BA, I was stoked. Sure enough, he finished putting together a SB caliber D. I was rooting for ME13, LVD and WillG to get the SB rings they so richly deserved. This really is his first year as the Bucs HC. Last year was a joke between the TB12 soap operas and BA/LW floating around. I see his stoic pose more like he’s very deep in thought and focused on his team and the game. So, not surprised to read this write up. Thanks, joes.

  13. Joe Says:

    Joe, Is there still a statue of Guden in the lobby of One Buc Place or did that get pulled too?

    It’s been, geez, years, since Joe’s been in the lobby (Joe comes in through a side door, sort of like a dog). Seem to recall last year someone posting a picture of that statue of all the great Bucs on Instagram.

  14. EternalSon Says:

    Many times comments reveal more about the commenter than any actual accuracy or legitimacy to the subject of which they speak.

    I don’t need someone to yell for the message to be heard.

    Go Bucs!!

  15. EternalSon Says:

    Guffaw and missives


  16. DBS Says:

    Eternal Son. If someone puts a few thins in caps and it bothers you . Turn your sound down. Maybe it won’t blow your hearing out. You damn computer fools.

  17. Buccaneer Bonzai Says:

    So…what I see here is weak-minded fans. If Joe posts something positive, they are like “What a guy!”

    I’d Joe posts something negative, “Scrap it all! Start over!!!!”

    I’ve learned to judge players ans coaches by whatever fruit they bear. In Bowles case, he has done fantastic at defense.

    As long as he is hands off the offense, I’m fine with him staying.

    But…that means he should not be the one picking the QB.

  18. Bucfan37 Says:

    I like Bowles and always thought he is a good NFL coach. Happy to have him as Bucs head coach.He seems confident and what more can you ask of him?

  19. Mike Johnson Says:

    I had a HS football coach who was like Bowles. Just watching him you’d think the guy as just a quiet mean A… But once you know him up close, he was a great guy who was just as friendly as anybody else. Sometimes a guys exterior expressions can hide a lot. it’s an intentional protective device.

  20. JB Says:

    Thanks for the heads up on Bowles personality.
    He seems like a coach guys wanna play hard for.
    I’m happy as a BUCS fan but equally happy for him
    And his continued success.

  21. Crickett Baker Says:

    I heard they dumped Gruden’s statue at the same time they pulled him from the ring of honor. He called a Glazer a bad name in the e-mails and that was it.

  22. stpetebucfan Says:


    That’s a great post! Perhaps a little erudite for a sports blog but we have some very smart guys here as well as the (fill in the blank)

    The Meditations of Marcus Aurelius have provided some of my favorite reading, although I actually listen to audio versions. And you nailed it and I like the way you pointed out how in modern times we frequently misuse “stoic”.

  23. Dave Pear Says:

    Keep it up Todd. I desperately want crow instead of turkey this Thanksgiving. Feed me!

  24. Larrd Says:

    He has made a lot of good decisions this year. Last year, not so much.

  25. ChiBuc Says:

    Didn’t we see Bowles singing last year during the pregame show before kickoff? Did I imagine this?

  26. D-Rok Says:

    “Joe Says:
    October 5th, 2023 at 9:27 am
    Joe, Is there still a statue of Guden in the lobby of One Buc Place or did that get pulled too?

    It’s been, geez, years, since Joe’s been in the lobby (Joe comes in through a side door, sort of like a dog).”

    I’m sorry, Joe. Although in MY house, our dogs are like royalty, so there’s that. Hold your head up high – at least this reader reads your awesome content on the daily. 🙂

  27. Citrus County Says:

    geno711 Says: WOW stpetebucfan is right that may be just a bit erudite for a sports blog. I’m off to get Webster Dictionary right now.

  28. Rod Munch Says:

    Something that is really interesting is listening to Bears podcasts, and the way they speak about Lovie Smith, it’s with reverence. Media and players love the guy up there, think he got a rotten deal when he was fired after winning 10-games, and a lot of chatter about how they should resign him.

    It’s remarkable what a difference it is compared to here, where people pretend like he wasn’t given the order to tank, and somehow managed to have a top 10 defense in 2015, only to get fired because they thought someone else might want Dirk as their head coach.

  29. Citrus County Says:

    Oh man ! All I wanted to do was agree with geno711 and stpetebucfan about the use of the word erudite in a sports blog. But the eye in the sky is moderating me. In the mean time I’m looking for the dictionary. For all you less informed out there a dictionary is a very handy item to have and USE. Let’s see; how do you spell that; e-r-u-d-i-t-e

  30. Citrus County Says:

    To geno711 Says. You are raising the bar. My compliments.

  31. Citrus County Says:

    To stpetebucfan Says: E-R-U-D-I-T-E That should make some of the poster boys go HUH !

  32. Citrus County Says:

    Hey Rod, Didn’t Lovie make the hiring of Jason Licht part of his deal ?

  33. Citrus County Says:

    Erudite. William F. Buckley, That’s erudite.

  34. stpetebucfan Says:


    Props to you for your intellectual curiosity. I’ve arrived alive at seventy five!
    Don’t know how but one thing I feel totally blessed/lucky to have is a continuing curiosity and love of learning.

    I still learn things everyday including here at JBF and not just football.

    And indeed W.F. Buckley was erudite. I found him a bit arrogant but he earned as indeed he was extremely erudite.

  35. Citrus County Says:

    St. Pete. A strong body isn’t useful without a strong mind. A strong mind is always useful even if the body is weak. My body is hanging tough but I’m finding intellectual stimulation with other folks harder to find these days. I don’t need to belong to a debate society but most of my friends don’t seem to appreciate lively conversation and brain exercise. I think that is why I’m finding JBF stimulating. I can be anonymous and play Earle Stanley Gardner. For me it’s good mind exercise.

  36. garro Says:

    I think I saw Bowles POed twice in games. Once at D White and once at Lenny after he danced around in the backfield. Although he was not as visibly upset as Chucky or BA.

    It might help Todds overall cause it he did let it go a bit more during games. Kinda like a baseball manager intentionally getting tossed in order to rally his team.

    Go Bucs!

  37. confido75 Says:

    I think coming across as stoich is not a bad thing at all. Getting emotional about things only leads to bad decision making. My only concern about Bowles has been his perceived stubborness. When you are out there vocalizing you want a strong, run first offense, yet don’t have the players to support this, then there is an issue. You play to your player’s strengths and hide their weaknesses from your opponents. The best military units adapt to the situation, change tactics as they go and overcome. This is how you win the battle. Football is no different. Every game is a battle and the strategy and tactics have to change depending on the enemy you are facing.