4:25 PM ET
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will retain coach Dirk Koetter despite a disappointing campaign that started off with high expectations, a source confirmed to ESPN.
In his first season as an NFL head coach, Koetter led the Buccaneers to a 9-7 record in 2016, which included a five-game winning streak late in the season. The Buccaneers fell short of making the playoffs by one game, but it was their first winning season since 2010.
Tampa Bay’s 2016 season substantially raised expectations for 2017, especially with an upgraded roster on both sides of the ball and quarterback Jameis Winston having one more year of experience under his belt. The team garnered national attention by appearing on HBO’s “Hard Knocks” during training camp.
But Winston missed three games with a sprained AC joint in his throwing shoulder, running back Doug Martin and the ground game were stuck in neutral, and the Buccaneers went from being the league’s best defense on third down in 2016 to its worst in 2017.
Even so, Koetter will return in 2018, as first reported by the Tampa Bay Times.
Koetter will be the first Buccaneers coach to reach a third season since Raheem Morris in 2011. Lovie Smith, who led the Buccaneers to an 8-24 record in 2014-15, and Greg Schiano, who went 11-21 in 2012-13, were both fired after two seasons.
ESPN’s Jenna Laine contributed to this report.
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Via:: NDTV – Sports