In 1996 when Lovie Smith got to Tampa Bay with Tony Dungy they were a team built on draft and develop. This week Lovie and Jason Licht have done anything but draft as they have signed 7 free agents, all presumably to be starters. You see Lovie changed partly because the Buccaneers have only 5 draft picks; however a part of me thinks he changed because he had to. You can’t rebuild in this day and age. You have to reload and redefine.
That brings me to the offense. What offense you may ask? The one that was nonexistent in Tampa last year? The one that ranked 32nd in various statistical categories? The one that is lacking speed? Lovie changed one philosophy since he came back into the NFL, now he must change another. The Buccaneer offense must become faster, tougher, and, more importantly, much more explosive.
The Chicago Bears under Lovie Smith finished no higher than 15th in total offense in 9 seasons (and they only finished 15th once). Ultimately the offensive production under Lovie Smith was the reason he was let go and in Tampa it must be the fixes he makes to the offense that will be the reason he wins. An offense that will be led presumably by Josh McCown must find a way to be better than 32nd in total offense.
Lovie Smith changed the moment he got to Tampa with he and Jason Licht loading up on free agent players. Now he must change the mindset of us all. We know he and Tony Dungy can coach defense, the question is can Lovie adapt the way Tony did when he went to Indy? That means opening an offense up and allowing Jeff Tedford to be more creative. That means being more aggressive. Bottom line, that means scoring more points.
We have already seen one change; the question is will it continue? I honestly don’t know but I can’t wait to find out!
Follow Booger on Twitter: @lsubooger