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Buccaneers fire OC Byron Leftwich after playoff exit


Super Bowl-winning offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich has been fired after four seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Leftwich, 43, who also won a Super Bowl as a backup QB with the Pittsburgh Steelers, helped lead Tampa Bay to its second title in franchise history in 2021.

Two years later, Leftwich is now left unemployed following a disastrous 8-10 campaign for Tampa Bay during the 2022 NFL season.

With quarterback Tom Brady eyeing alternative options this offseason, many football pundits speculated the Buccaneers would likely shake things up on their coaching staff.

Leftwich is the first domino to fall, with head coach Todd Bowles seemingly safe – for now.

Bowles, 59, just completed his first year as the Bucs’ head coach after taking over for Bruce Arians last spring. Bowles was previously the franchise’s defensive coordinator – a role he thrived in, leading the club to a 31-9 Super Bowl LV victory over the Kansas City Chiefs.

As the team’s head coach this past season, Bowles oversaw an underachieving Bucs squad that wilted from preseason Super Bowl favorite to an early postseason exit in a 31-14 thrashing to the Dallas Cowboys on Monday night.

Leftwich and the Bucs offense could only engineer 386 yards in that contest, and failed to run the ball effectively in either half. The lack of a run game troubled Tampa Bay from the jump this season.

They were last in the league in rush attempts in 2022, as well as last in total rush yards as a team.

What NFL teams did Byron Leftwich play for?

As a player, Leftwich was a quarterback for the Jaguars, Falcons, Steelers and Buccaneers. The No. 7 overall pick in the 2003 NFL Draft finished with 10,532 passing yards and 58 touchdowns over 50 career starts.

Did Byron Leftwich coach the Jaguars?

Before the 2022 season, Leftwich turned down the Jaguars’ head coaching opening to stay with Tom Brady in Tampa Bay.

How long has Byron Leftwich coached for?

Leftwich was one of the top offensive coordinator candidates for the 2023 NFL head coaching cycle despite the decision to pass on Jacksonville’s offer last year.

In addition to lifting the Tampa Bay offense, Leftwich served as the interim offensive coordinator for the Arizona Cardinals in 2018 – a trial run that led to his full-time job in Tampa.

Fast forward five years, Leftwich certainly has options this spring. The NFL currently has nine vacant offensive coordinator positions.

If Leftwich doesn’t land one of those, he’ll likely be considered and tapped to run a club’s QB room.

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