Retirement may not last long for former Indianapolis Colts and Arizona Cardinals head coach Bruce Arians.
According to Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, Arians is the favorite to land the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' head coaching position. However, contract negotiations haven't started with the 66-year-old Arians.
Bruce Arians remains the front runner for the Bucs HC job and it sure looks like it’s going that way. However, I’ve been told they’ve not entered into contract negotiations yet with Arians yet.— Rick Stroud (@NFLSTROUD) January 7, 2019
The gig opened up when the Buccaneers fired Dirk Koetter, following his three years on the job. Arians has also been tied to the Cleveland Browns, who decided not to remove the interim label from Gregg Williams. However, talks of Arians going to Cleveland have stalled recently, and they have since interviewed the likes of Josh McDaniels and Matt Eberflus for the opening.
Arians retired from coaching after the 2017 season, where the Cardinals finished 8-8. His five-year tenure in Arizona yielded a 49-30-1 record - including two playoff berths and a trip to the 2015 NFC Championship Game.
Following two disappointing seasons in Arizona, Arians decided it was time to step away from football and focus on time with his family. He already won two Super Bowl championships as part of the Pittsburgh Steelers' coaching staff, and Arians has been involved in football since 1975, when he became an assistant at Virginia Tech.
Perhaps Arians didn't think there was much more to accomplish as a coach. But if Stroud's report is an indication of anything, Arians will have only sat out of coaching for one year, and he's ready to give it another go.
Arians went 9-3 as interim head coach of the Indianapolis Colts during the 2012 season, when Chuck Pagano had to step away to deal with leukemia. Afterwards, Arians accepted Arizona's offer to become head coach.
What This Means
The Buccaneers haven't made the playoffs in 11 years now, and they have a lot of work to do in catching up to the NFC South foes. They would certainly get off to a good start in hiring Arians, one of the game's most brilliant offensive minds.