PLAYERS TURNED COACHES One of the interesting things you can do as a new season approaches is look round at former Buccaneer players both on and off the field. And entering the 2022 campaign, there are no less than 16 former Tampa Bay players now coaching in the NFL. Before we go any further, quick pop quiz - can you name the three former Buccaneer quarterbacks who became head coaches in the NFL? The longest-serving coach who once pulled on the orange and white colours is Bill Kollar who was a Buc from 1977 to 1981 and started 35 games on the defensive line. He enters his 34th season of professional coaching and his eighth with the Denver Broncos, now responsible for defensive special projects. Approaching his longevity is Mike Shula who was the Bucs’ 12th round pick in 1987 but never actually threw a competitive pass for the Bucs. He switched to coaching the following season and went on to become the Bucs’ offensive co-ordinator under Tony Dungy. Quarterback coach is a natural progression for career back-ups in the NFL. All that time holding clipboards and studying game film without taking the pressure or pressures. Scott Milanovich was a Buc in 1996 and played in NFL Europe for the Barcelona Dragons and now plies his trade for the Colts. Pat O’Hara played Tyler Cherubini in Any Given Sunday and is now in his 5th season with the Tennessee Titans. Brian Griese left the commentary booth to take up a role with the 49ers and of course Byron Leftwich was a Buc passer for three starts in 2009. A member of the Super Bowl team is now a coach, Keenan McCardell entering his 8th NFL coaching season and his first with Minnesota. Micheal Spurlock will have his first season with Green Bay telling his players about his part in Buccaneer franchise history alongside former Bucs Byron Storer and Jerry Gray. Frank Okam is one of the biggest human beings I have seen on an NFL field and his larger-than-life personality will coach the defensive line of the Las Vegas Raiders in 2022. And the three quarterbacks turned head coaches? Steve Spurrier is the easiest one thanks to his two less-than-successful years in Washington. Jim Zorn also was the head coach in Washington but was the Bucs’ QB in the final replacement team game in 1987. And then there is Jason Garrett, aka “The Clapper” as Bill Simmons nicknamed him. He had several years coaching the Cowboys but was a third-string Buc briefly in 2004 having come out of the commentary booth following an injury to Brad Johnson in a game he was calling for Fox Sports. NFL FRANCHISE CURRENT ROLE FORMER BUC NFL TEAM CHICAGO BEARS Assistant offensive line Austin King 3 1 GREEN BAY PACKERS Defensive Backs Jerry Gray 26 3 GREEN BAY PACKERS Assistant special teams Byron Storer 12 1 GREEN BAY PACKERS Special Teams Quality Control Micheal Spurlock 1 1 MINNESOTA VIKINGS Receivers Keenan McCardell 8 1 TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS Offensive co-ordinator Byron Leftwich 8 4 TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS Defensive Special Teams Assistant Keith Tandy 3 3 SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS Quarterbacks Brian Griese 1 1 BUFFALO BILLS Senior Offensive Assistant Mike Shula 31 1 INDIANAPOLIS COLTS Quarterbacks Scott Milanovich 5 2 INDIANAPOLIS COLTS Assistant Linebackers Cato June 1 1 JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS Safeties Cody Grimm 4 1 TENNESSEE TITANS Quarterbacks Pat O’Hara 8 5 TENNESSEE TITANS Assistant Offensive line Mike Sullivan 20 9 DENVER BRONCOS Defensive special projects Bill Kollar 34 8 LAS VEGAS RAIDERS Defensive line Frank Okam 3 1