Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced Wednesday that Bruce Arians has decided to step down as head coach and move to a senior football consultant position in the front office.
Defensive coordinator Todd Bowles has been tapped to replace him.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports a press conference is scheduled for 1 p.m. Thursday to formally announce the decision.
Arians had a 31-18 record with the Buccaneers and led them to their second Super Bowl in franchise history. He became the oldest coach to win a Super Bowl at 68 years old. “Winning Super Bowl LV at our home stadium, with my mom and family in attendance, was really the last item I wanted to check off my career bucket list,” he said in a statement, per Schefter.
Arians rejected the notion that health played a part in his decision. “Before you start thinking this is about my health, don’t. This is the best I have felt in many years and I’m looking forward to helping this team continue winning through my new role,” he said. Arians did spend the latter portion of last season roaming the sidelines while nursing a partially ruptured Achilles.
Bowles and Buccaneers offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich interviewed for the Jaguars’ head coaching job earlier this year, with the latter seeming like the front-runner for the position until he removed his name from consideration. With Leftwich staying put, the Bucs can maintain the chemistry between him and Tom Brady, who chose to come out of retirement earlier this month and return to Tampa.
Brady shared a statement on social media in response to Arians’ retirement. “You are an incredible man and coach, and it was a privilege to play for you,” he wrote. “You are a true NFL legend and pioneer for all the work you have done to make the league more diverse and inclusive.”
Arians was the first NFL head coach with three Black coordinators (Leftwich, Bowles, and special teams coordinator Keith Armstrong) and two female coaches (defensive line assistant Lori Locust and assistant strength and conditioning coach Maral Javadifar).