Bruce Arians retired this offseason after three seasons coaching Tampa Bay. Much was made about his retirement, because Tom Brady had just came back and many thought he only returned if he was guaranteed that Arians would be gone.
Pretty much everyone who has spoken on the record, including Arians, have said that there’s no legitimacy to that chatter.
NFL Insider Ian Rapoport was asked on the “Rich Eisen Show” if he was buying that chatter.
“I don’t think that’s true. I really don’t. And it’s one of those things … I get tweeted the night that BA (Bruce Arians) retired, you know, basically about how he got to do what he wished, which was hand his team over to his top lieutenant Todd Bowles, with a great chance to win the Super Bowl, right? It was everything [he] wanted. And I got accused of all sorts of things on social media, which tends to happen.”
Rapoport added that Arians was possibly trying to get the Buccaneers into the best position for his successor, Todd Bowles:
“And I’m like, okay, either, you know, and I’ve talked to, I would say, six or seven Bucs sources and people close to Brady, who all say that’s completely ridiculous. And all said it was ridiculous throughout. And so, could everyone be lying to me? Sure. It’s theoretically possible there could be some great vendetta to make sure that everyone tells the same lies to me at the same time. It’s possible. Or Bruce Arians just got his team set, got all the free agents, got Brady back, and handed Bowles the best team you can imagine.”
The Bucs won Super Bowl 55 at their home stadium over the Kansas City Chiefs in the 2020 season. Arians is the oldest coach in NFL history to win a Super Bowl.
Brady is coming off a year where he led the NFL in passing yards (5,316) and passing touchdowns (43). The win in Super Bowl 55 was his seventh career Super Bowl victory.