Jan 6, 2014; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Lovie Smith is introduced as head coach during a press conference at One Buccaneer Place. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Lovie Smith explains hiring Jeff Tedford as offensive coordinator

You’d be hard-pressed to find a person that had a bad word to say about the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ hire of Lovie Smith as their new head coach last week. He’s completely the opposite of what Greg Schiano was, which is not a bad thing considering the majority of the problems in Tampa Bay the last two seasons were in some way or another tied to Schiano’s coaching.

What some people did not agree with, though, was Smith’s hiring of former Cal head coach, Jeff Tedford, as his offensive coordinator.

This will be the first time that Tedford will be employed as an NFL coach. He made his name in the collegiate ranks as an assistant at Fresno State and Oregon, before really garnering the attention as the Cal head coach from 2002-2012.

Despite the worries, Smith explained his reasoning behind bringing Tedford along at his introductory press conference.

With a young quarterback in Mike Glennon on the roster, Smith pointed to Tedford’s reputation as a QB gru to start.

For my offensive coordinator position, I wanted to get a guy that had been a primary quarterback guru, that knew that position in and out. My research led me to Jeff Tedford. After that, I looked at his track record and what he had done, especially at Cal, what he had done offensively, and I brought him in.

But before people think that the Bucs are going to start slinging the ball all over the field, Smith pointed out that he has discussed having a balanced attack with Tedford at the helm.

“We spent a couple of days together down in my basement in Chicago and kind of merged our philosophies, and they weren’t off, on how we wanted to play offensive football. I’m talking about a strong running game, a power running attack. I think you have to have balance with your offense. We plan on having a balanced offensive attack. But at the same time, when I say balanced with the run, being able to pass the ball and have a big play ability in the passing game.

Tags: Football Jeff Tedford Lovie Smith Tampa Bay Buccaneers