Buccaneers defensive coordinator Todd Bowles and offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich have generated a lot of buzz as head coaching candidates, but neither of them has been tasked with stepping in for Bruce Arians after Arians tested positive for COVID-19 this week.
Assistant head coach Harold Goodwin got that nod and he will oversee operations until Arians is cleared to return. His early work in that role earned a good review from tight end Cameron Brate, who said Goodwin is “ready to handle the role and he’s going to do a great job,” and guard Alex Cappa said it is “just cool to see him get the opportunity” after many years on Arians’ staff.
Goodwin isn’t on the same interview lists as Bowles or Leftwich and said Wednesday that he knows playcallers catch the eye of those making hiring decisions, but added that he thinks there are other traits that should be prized by those looking at candidates to lead their teams.
“We talk about what makes a head coach,” Goodwin said, via Joey Knight of the Tampa Bay Times. “It’s about building cultures, it’s about being leaders of men, and just having that disciplinary, authority-type figure that can get a team behind you and fight for you. There are a lot of good coaches out here that can do that, that are not coordinators. That’s all I’ll say towards that.”
Arians may be back in time to coach against the Jets on Sunday, but Goodwin will get his chance to run a team for a game if that clearance doesn’t come. Goodwin’s portfolio with the Bucs might make that his only shot even if he thinks he’s capable of more than others might believe he can do as a coach.