Licht Says Glazers Have Confidence In Him Finding Next Coach

TAMPA (620 WDAE) -- The responsibility for finding the replacement for Dirk Koetter as head coach of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will fall on the man who named Koetter to the post three years ago.

Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht met with the media Monday afternoon to discuss the dismissal of Koetter after three seasons at the helm of the team, which included back-to-back 5-11 campaigns.  

"We're determined to find that person that is going to lead us in to those successful years that we're all anticipating," Licht said.  "The Glazer family has assigned me, charged me, and have confidence in me, trust me, whatever you want to say, to lead that charge and search for the next guy." 

According to Licht, both he and Koetter returned to the facility after Sunday's 34-32 defeat at the hands of the Atlanta Falcons at Raymond James Stadium, when the general manager told his head coach the Glazer family wanted to meet with him.  Licht said the Glazer family informed Koetter that he was being relieved of his duties as head coach and he returned to Licht's office before leaving.

As for why Koetter, who finishes his tenure as Bucs head coach with a record of 19-29, was fired and Licht, whose record is 27-53 in five years in charge of football operations, got to stay, the general manager was pragmatic.

"Right now, I'm just grateful to be here,"  Licht said.  "I'm grateful to be here.  I'm grateful to be standing here.  I told that to Dirk [Monday] night.  He told me that he was happy that I was here.  And right now, like I said, the Glazer family has put their confidence in me to find the next head coach, and I'm grateful for that opportunity.  And we are committed to finding that guy."

Unlike Licht's hiring of Koetter to replace Lovie Smith after the 2015 season, the Buccaneers GM said the next head coach of this franchise will come from outside the organization, and that new coach will be able to determine which assistants he'd like to retain, though the current coaching staff will also be allowed to look for opportunities with other clubs in the interim.

Click below to listen to the entire press conference on demand.

Photo: Getty Images

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