Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy: An Analysis of Bucs Offenses

NFL NEWS: Lovie Smith

One of the biggest complaints about Lovie Smith as a head coach is the way he keeps changing offensive coordinators.

Much was the case when Smith was Chicago Bears head coach with Ron Turner (2005-2009), Mike Martz (2010-2011) and Mike Tice (2012). Now Smith has already gone through Jeff Tedford (2014) to Dirk Koetter (2015) with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

When you look at who else had trouble with offense, look at his predecessor who first gave him his first opportunity in the league in 1996 in Tony Dungy.

When you look at Dungys record, he hired Mike Shula (1996-1999), Les Steckel (2000) and Clyde Christensen (2001) before being fired from the Buccaneers.

By the Numbers

Heres a look Lovie Smiths numbers with the Bears and the Bucs.

Lovie Smiths Offenses
Team Year Offensive Ranking Coordinator
Bears 2004 32nd Ron Turner
Bears 2005 29th Ron Turner
Bears (Super Bowl) 2006 15th Ron Turner
Bears 2007 27th Ron Turner
Bears 2008 26th Ron Turner
Bears 2009 23rd Ron Turner
Bears 2010 30th Mike Martz
Bears 2011 24th Mike Martz
Bears 2012 28th Mike Tice
Buccaneers 2014 30th Jeff Tedford/Marcus Arroyo
Buccaneers 2015 ? Dirk Koetter

Lets look at Tony Dungys offenses with the Bucs.

Tony Dungys Bucs Offenses
Year Offensive Ranking Coordinator
1996 28th Mike Shula
1997 29th Mike Shula
1998 22nd Mike Shula
1999 28th Mike Shula
2000 21st Les Skeckel
2001 26th Clyde Christensen

*Source NFL.com

Of the two, Smith is the one with an offense beyond the 20th ranking for one year, the one he made the Super Bowl. Dungy, who inherited offensive coordinator Tom Moore and quarterback Peyton Manning as head coach of the Indianapolis Colts, was his opponent in Super Bowl XLI. The Colts defeated the Bears, 29-17.

So to the fans who long for the successes of Dungy, you kind of got the “sequel” in Smith. Sure Dungy was 6-10 his first year with the team and Smith was 2-14 in his first year, but many outlets already discussed his firing just in his first year.

Would Dungy have gotten this his first year if 1996 were suddenly 2014? Perhaps current media culture helped fester this bile toward Smith. Fact is, Dungy started a culture of winning the Bay Area hasnt seen in since John McKaymuch like Smith is trying to do right now.

Perhaps going through the golden age of the Bucs through Dungy and Gruden has spoiled this area and theres nothing wrong to expect better, but I think with the history of losing this area has had in professional sports, youd have a more humble base.

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About Tom

Tom Chang is a freelance journalist with a background in multimedia journalism and web publishing. He is currently pursuing his Masters in Journalism and Media Studies from the University of South Florida St.Petersburg. He graduated in 2004 with a Bachelors Degree in Mass Communications at USF Tampa. Tom's interests include a little bit of everything from entertainment to sports. He also wishes to delve into creative writing writing sci-fi/fantasy stories. Tom was recently the Online Editor for USF St. Petersburg's the Crow's Nest, he joined the staff in January 2010 where he started freelance writing, photographing, copy editing and later became a staff writer. Tom’s freelance experience in journalism amassed a wide range of companies including Creative Loafing, The Focus Magazine, Lutz News, Examiner.com, and Tampa Tribune.
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