TAMPA, Fla. — This week, Buccaneers' defensive coordinator Todd Bowles signed a three-year deal to stay with the Bucs. The contract does not prevent him from accepting a head coach job at any time, per NFL insider Adam Schefter.
Bowles was the New York Jets head coach from 2015 to 2018 before Tampa Bay hired him two years ago. He interviewed for the Falcons and Eagles head coaching jobs this offseason, and he's considered one of the top candidates for any future openings. But Bowles, 57, said his main concern is getting the Bucs ready to win.
"I don’t look for the next job. You look for the next job, you don’t do the job you have," Bowles said after Thursday's practice. "If something comes up at the end of the year, then that’s a discussion. Right now, it’s the furthest thing from my mind."
Bowles returns all 11 starters from last year's Super Bowl champion defense, but he says he's just as happy to have all of his assistant coaches back.
"You don’t have to coach coaches or teach anybody. And to have the same chemistry and coaching staff on both sides of the ball I think is big," he said.
Second-year safety Antoine Winfield couldn't be happier to have Bowles around for at least another season.
"As soon as I read the news I was like 'Oh, that’s amazing!' He’s gonna be here for my contract, so I’m excited for him to be here," Winfield said.
Winfield lived the dream when he won a Super Bowl ring in his rookie season. But he said he put the jewelry away and turned his focus on getting one to put next to it.
"My mindset is that’s old news. Now it’s time to out here and do it again," Winfield added. "I’m just out here every day trying to get better. Perfecting my craft. My mindset is that I’m not a Super Bowl champion anymore. I’m focused on the next one."
Bowles says Winfield missed some opportunities during games last season, but he's already showing improvement entering year two.
"He’s doing his job and playing his position, but he can expand on that, and he will, and he has already some in camp," Bowles said. "Just knowing the overall defense. Knowing where he can cheat and take advantage of his plays and not just use his athletic ability."