The Tampa Bay Buccaneers hired Bruce Arians to be their next head coach, signing him Tuesday to a four-year contract with a fifth-year team option.
“Bruce Arians is one of the NFL’s most well-respected coaches over the past two decades and we are excited to have him leading our team,” owner/co-chairman Bryan Glazer said in a statement. “Throughout this process, we focused on finding the right coach with a proven ability to elevate our players and lead our team forward. Bruce has played a large role in the development and career success of some of our league’s best players and we look forward to seeing him continue that work here with our franchise.”
Arians, 66, stepped down last year in an apparent retirement after going 49-30-1 as head coach of the Arizona Cardinals from 2013 to 2017. He is a two-time Coach of the Year award winner, including when he went 9-3 as interim head coach of the Indianapolis Colts in 2012.
Per ESPN, the Bucs will send the Cardinals a sixth-round pick in exchange for a seventh-round pick and Arians’ rights, which Arizona holds since the coach retired. There was reportedly confusion over whether or not compensation was necessary.
According to multiple reports, Arians will hire Todd Bowles as defensive coordinator, Byron Leftwich as passing-game coordinator, Harold Goodwin as run-game coordinator/offensive line and Clyde Christensen as quarterbacks coach.
Bowles (defensive coordinator) — who was just fired as the New York Jets’ head coach — Goodwin (offensive coordinator) and Leftwich (quarterbacks coach) were on Arians’ staff in Arizona. Leftwich stayed on the Cardinals’ staff this season and was promoted to offensive coordinator after the midseason firing of Mike McCoy, but the Cardinals let Leftwich go last week. Christensen was the quarterbacks coach in Indianapolis when Arians was the offensive coordinator.
Bruce Arians throughout his head coaching career
Indianapolis Colts interim head coach Bruce Arians talks about head coach Chuck Pagano, who has been diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia, during an NFL football news conference at the team’s headquarters in Indianapolis, Monday, Oct. 1, 2012. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Indianapolis Colts interim head coach Bruce Arians looks over the plays during the first half of an NFL football game against the Cleveland Browns Sunday, Oct. 21, 2012, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)
Indianapolis Colts interim head coach Bruce Arians questions a call during the first half of an NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills in Indianapolis, Sunday, Nov. 25, 2012. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)
Indianapolis Colts former interim head coach and offensive coordinator Bruce Arians listens as head coach Chuck Pagano speaks during a news conference Monday, Dec. 24, 2012, in Indianapolis. Pagano returns to the team after undergoing successful leukemia treatment. Arians coached the team while Pagano was on leave. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
Indianapolis Colts head coach Chuck Pagano, right, watches during the first half of an NFL football game against the Houston Texans, Sunday, Dec. 30, 2012, in Indianapolis. Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians, left, looks on. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)
Arizona Cardinals new head coach Bruce Arians speaks to the media after he was introduced during an NFL football news conference at the team’s training facility Friday, Jan. 18, 2013, in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Bruce Arians, formerly with the Indianapolis Colts and now with the Arizona Cardinals, accepts the AP Coach of the Year award at the 2nd Annual NFL Honors on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013 in New Orleans. (Photo by AJ Mast/Invision/AP)
Arizona Cardinals new quarterback Carson Palmer, right, and head coach Bruce Arians speak to the media during an NFL football news conference, Tuesday, April 2, 2013, at the teams’ training facility in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)
Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians makes a play call during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Houston Texans, Saturday, Aug. 9, 2014, in Glendale, Ariz. (AP Photo/Rick Scuteri)
Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians, right, hugs Cardinals team president Michael Bidwill, left, as they celebrate after an NFL football game win over the Kansas City Chiefs Sunday, Dec. 7, 2014, in Glendale, Ariz. The Cardinals defeated the Chiefs 17-14. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Bruce Arians, head coach of the Arizona Cardinals, accepts the AP Coach of the Year award, presented by Lenovo, on stage at the 4th annual NFL Honors at the Phoenix Convention Center Symphony Hall on Saturday, Jan. 1, 2015. (Photo by Frank Micelotta/Invision for NFL/AP Images)
Arizona Cardinals’ Larry Fitzgerald talks with head coach Bruce Arians during team workouts, Tuesday, May 26, 2015, in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)
Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera talks to Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians before the NFL football NFC Championship game Sunday, Jan. 24, 2016, in Charlotte, N.C. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians, left, and general manager Steve Keim discuss the upcoming NFL football draft, Tuesday, April 19, 2016, in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York)
FILE – In this Feb. 24, 2015, file photo, Arizona Cardinals coach Bruce Arians speaks during a news conference in Tempe, Ariz. NFL Films was embedded with the Arizona Cardinals in 2015 season. The result is “All or Nothing,’’ an eight-part series that debuts Friday on Amazon. At the center of it all is Arians, one of the best coaches in professional football and certainly among its most colorful. (AP Photo/Matt York, File)
Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians, left, greets Chicago Bears head coach John Fox after an preseason NFL football game, Saturday, Aug. 19, 2017, in Glendale, Ariz. The Bears won 24-23. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians speaks during a press conference before an NFL training session at the London Irish rugby team training ground in the Sunbury-onThames suburb of south west London, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017. The Arizona Cardinals are preparing for an NFL regular season game against the Los Angeles Rams in London on Sunday. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
Arizona Cardinals quarterback Drew Stanton (5) stands with head coach Bruce Arians, right during warmups before an NFL football game against the Seattle Seahawks, Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017, in Seattle. (AP Photo/John Froschauer)
Arians spent the 2018 broadcasting games for CBS. In November, he said he wouldn’t consider taking any head-coaching jobs except for the Cleveland Browns’ opening, but he has familiarity in Tampa. Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht was in Arizona in 2013 as the vice president of player personnel, and Arians has worked with Jameis Winston since the quarterback was a youth football camp attendee.
Arians replaces the fired Dirk Koetter, who spent three seasons as the Bucs head coach and agreed Tuesday to become the Atlanta Falcons’ offensive coordinator.