There is a reason why NFL teams spend roughly half a million dollars a year, often more, on a media relations staff. It’s to have public relations professionals craft messages.
It’s also why executives/coaches/players often offer bland, cliché-ridden responses to questions. Their answers are varnished if not rehearsed. So yesterday when Bucs AC/DC-loving Bucs general manager Jason Licht lauded Bucs coach Todd Bowles for his “communication” skills, Joe had to chuckle to himself. The cover of “communication” recalled for Joe one of the most outrageous Bucs stories.
Back in the halcyon Mike Smith era of the Bucs, defensive backs, specifically fan favorite Chris Conte along with Ryan Smith, regularly were roasted like a ribeye on a grill and smothered with an herb Irish butter sauce.
When asked why these guys and others were torched play-after-play, game-after-game, Smith always shrugged his shoulders and declared it was about “communication.”
Well, he wasn’t exactly lying.
Joe later learned Bucs defenders sometimes couldn’t understand the young linebacker in the huddle who was charged with barking the plays. So when the huddle broke, several defenders had no idea what play was called. They had to guess.
Naturally, this led to dudes freelancing and fans subsequently watching defensive backs running for their lives chasing ball carriers in the open field.
Lost in the explanation Joe heard was if guys couldn’t understand the linebacker calling plays — you know, communication — then why the hell didn’t Smith have someone call the plays that could speak clearly?
And folks wonder why the Bucs in the pre-Bucco Bruce Arians’ days were so miserable on defense!
Anyway, here is Licht yesterday discussing Bowles’ best attribute.
“Well, he’s got a lot of great attributes,” Licht said. “I would say his communication is great, especially between he and his players but then himself and me. So, we can talk about anything at any time and have hard discussions at any time.”
Perhaps Bowles has been communicating with Licht about the need to find a pass rusher?
This content was originally published here.