Bruce Arians has been at the forefront for diversity among his coaching staff, compiling one of the best staffs in the NFL. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are the only team where all four of the major coordinators are Black and have two full-time women on the coaching staff, a product of Arians creating opportunities for coaches in an effort to groom head coaches in the league.
Byron Leftwich has been Arians' offensive coordinator for the past two years with Tampa Bay and has been on his staff in four of the five years he's coached. Leftwich is 41 years old and has set records with Jameis Winston and Tom Brady over the last two seasons, yet didn't receive a single head coaching interview this cycle.
That didn't sit well with Arians, a huge advocate of Leftwich's success.
"I was very, very pissed Byron at least didn't get an interview this year," Arians said on Super Bowl opening night. "For the job that he's done -- I get way to much credit and so does Tom Brady. I think next year people will see he took Jameis Winston -- who broke every single record here for scoring and passing -- and now Tom has broken both."
Leftwich, who calls plays for the Buccaneers, led Tampa Bay to first in the league in passing offense (302.8 yards per game), and third in total offense (397.9 yards per game) in his first season as offensive coordinator (2019). The Buccaneers finished third in the league in scoring (28.6 points per game). This year, the Buccaneers were second in the league in passing offense (289.1 yards per game) and passing touchdowns (42) -- while finishing third in scoring (30.8 points per game).
Leftwich didn't get an interview for a head coaching job, despite having the resume and the innovation teams are looking for in a head coach. Not to mention he's only 41. Arians has an idea why teams passed on Leftwich this time around.
"He's done a fantastic job. He's everything -- supposedly -- what people are looking for, although this year was kind of a defensive cycle," Arians said. "You never know how the owners are going to go. I'm very, very proud of our staff."
The moment has finally come: Super Bowl LV is here. It'll be the Tampa Bay Buccaneers playing a rare home game as they take on the defending champion Kansas City Chiefs with the winner hoisting the Lombardi Trophy. For the Buccaneers, they find themselves back at Raymond James Stadium after winning three road playoff games in a row, including a victory in the NFC title game against MVP candidate Aaron Rodgers and his Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. As for the Chiefs, they took down arguably the hottest team in football in the Buffalo Bills in the AFC Championship Game and are now looking to become the first team since the 2003-04 Patriots to win back-to-back titles.