Picture Cred: Bucs head coach Bruce Arians - Photo by: Cliff Welch/ Pewter Report
If you don’t believe me, just listen to what Bruce Almighty had to say after mini-camp practice recently on his perspective of Suh playing with ‘too much fire’.
“Ain’t enough fire in the world. Burn some guys around you.”
Translation: Knock some people around, and destroy the ball carrier, whoever that may be, and wherever he may be, and do it with a passion that they will remember. Now, I’m not in Mensa, but I’d dare to say that has got to be pretty close. Passion, desire, and winning are all contagious. Every bit as much as complacency, laziness, and losing are.
It’s all about the Culture of a team.
Dungy knew it, Gruden knows it, and Arians is trying to instill it, into a team, that has had one winning season in it’s last eight. Into a team, that has an all-time win-loss record of 260 wins against 415 losses, and 1 tie. Five winning seasons since the Super Bowl win, out of 16. It’s the culture that has to change, and no successful coach has ever turned a constant loser into a winner without turning that around. Asked about that, Arians mentions one aspect of it:
“I think it’s going well. I think the accountability – when I look at the assignment sheets and the penalty sheets, they’ve dwindled from the beginning. You expect a lot of them early, but now if you’re on there for four or five days in a row, we’ve got a problem. You know, you’ve got two things – you’re either not smart enough to play or your give-a-care meter don’t run hot enough. Alright, so, you’ve got to have one or the other to get off that sheet. I don’t determine practice – how well it went, have to go watch the film, grade it – we had thirty-five mental errors. We could have all the enthusiasm in the world, but we’re going to lose.”
Whatcha got deep inside?
Hopefully, the Fire of competition and the enthusiasm of passion will spread through this team. Becoming the status quo, the norm, the what’s delivered, because it is expected. Because it is demanded by Ownership and Management, Coaches, Fellow Players, Trainers, Ball Boys, Fans, and Cheerleaders. Most of all though, because the Bucs Players demand it of themselves. Each going that extra mile to obtain something greater than what this team has been known for during much of its history. To get more, you have to invest more, in Blood, Sweat, and Tears. They have to buy into the new attitude without any doubt and rise above the past. Accountability and Dedication, and the fear of letting down the guy beside you should be what pushes this team. It appears that Arians, and Suh, and others, are leading in that direction, and the rest are following. It’s contagious and spreading. Here’s to it! Go Bucs!