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Bruce Arians addresses the possibility of returning as NFL head coach

Bruce Arians
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Bruce Arians abruptly retired as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach in late March, stepping down with Todd Bowles taking over after Tom Brady unretired. While Arians sill works for the Buccaneers, it’s clear he misses being an NFL coach.

Arians’ sudden departure after Brady returned sparked plenty of NFL rumors regarding a rift between the two football icons. The working relationship between the two reportedly deteriorated during the 2021 season and Arians admitted in June he still might be coaching if Brady never returned to Tampa Bay.

  • Bruce Arians coaching record: 80-48-1, 6-3 in playoffs

The 70-year-old former NFL coach has had a first-hand experience of everything happening inside the Buccaneers’ organization this season. During that time, he called Brady out for his poor performances and guaranteed Tampa Bay wins the NFC South.

Related: NFL coaching candidates 2023

As multiple NFL head-coaching vacancies open up, teams around the league will explore every option. It includes reaching out to retired coaches, whether they work in a front office or as an NFL analyst on television. Meanwhile, Arians is making it clear he misses his job leading a team.

In an interview with Rick Stroud of the Tampa Bay Times, Arians expressed his interest in returning to coaching. However, he also seemed to hint he knows the opportunity likely won’t come for him.

“Would I love to be coaching? Yeah. It’s what you do. It kills me to go upstairs. I’m on the sideline in pregame and it kills me to have to go upstairs and just sit there. It kills me. It’s hard. It’s what I do. I’ve done it my whole life. I’m smart enough to know it’s over.”

Bruce Arians on his interest in being an NFL head coach again

While there would be some appeal in bringing in a Super Bowl-winning coach with a great offensive mind to partner with a young quarterback, it seems to be out of the cards. Arians is reaching the age where former coaches typically don’t get called back to the sideline and he seems very aware of the circumstances.

If Arians want to remain a part of the Buccaneers’ organization in 2023, though, he would certainly be welcomed back. The fiery personality he brings is still apparent, with the NFL warning him about his sideline antics. If all of that isn’t enough reason for Arians to remain with the team, Brady is one of the top NFL free agents in 2023 and he won’t be returning to Tampa Bay.