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Bucs OC Todd Monken dark-horse coaching candidate?

Florida Football Insiders

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Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

Less than a week after the the shake-up in Tampa Bay that saw the Bucs fire head coach Dirk Koetter, his offensive coordinator is under consideration for multiple NFL head coaching jobs.

First came this report from ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler on Saturday that Todd Monken, who’s been the coordinator for the last three seasons in Tampa Bay, and a meeting that he’s already had with a team about their opening:

As Fowler relayed it is also well known that Monken is scheduled to talk with both the Bengals and the Jets about their openings coming up.

This was the first season that Monken took over as the play-caller and the Buccaneers had tremendous success. First with veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick lighting up the New Orleans Saints and the Philadelphia Eagles in the opening two games for over 400 yards each time and being named NFC Offensive Player of the Week both times.

The Bucs fluctuated with Fitzpatrick and franchise quarterback Jameis Winston starting games throughout the rest of the season and finished with a 5 – 11 record. Still, they threw for an NFL leading 5,125 yards combined and averaged a 12th best 24.8 points a game.

Monken is highly regarded as an offensive mind and importantly, is already proven, as a former head coach in college at Southern Mississippi.

There, he turned around the Golden Eagles dramatically in just a couple of seasons, including a nine-win campaign where his team played in the Conference USA championship game in 2015. That Southern Miss team was quarterbacked by Nick Mullens, who was tutored by Monken and his staff. Mullens, became the starting QB this past season down the stretch for the 49ers finishing with a 3-5 record.

While the Packers opening is intriguing because of Hall of Famer-to-be Aaron Rodgers at the controls, Green Bay has been interviewing several different offensive coordinators and former head coaches, including former Dolphins boss Adam Gase last week.

The Jets are more intriguing than the Bengals in that they will have second-year quarterback Sam Darnold with a new coach and Monken could potentially be a fit there. However, New York just went the coordinator route with former coach Todd Bowles. And, they fired him after he failed to have a winning year in any of his four seasons.

Monken also has previous experience having served as Koetters wide receiver coach when Koetter was the offensive coordinator of the Jacksonville Jaguars earlier in the 2000s.

It’s not known what kind of chance Monken has at any of these positions he’s interviewing for, but there have been numerous successful offensive coordinators who’ve been given head coaching opportunities over the course of the last two or three years.

Those include names like Matt Nagy, Sean McVay, Doug Pederson and Frank Reich. All of whom had never been head coaches before.

So, while he’s probably a “dark horse,” time will tell if Monken gets his shot with one of the current eight openings.

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