Bucs' Todd Bowles Reportedly Agrees to 3-Year Contract as NFL's Highest-Paid DC

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVAugust 4, 2021

TAMPA, FL - JUL 27: Defensive Coordinator Todd Bowles smiles as he listens to some of his players during the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Training Camp on July 27, 2021 at the AdventHealth Training Center at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Cliff Welch/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Todd Bowles reportedly reached an agreement Wednesday on a three-year contract extension that will keep his status as the NFL's highest-paid defensive coordinator.

ESPN's Adam Schefter reported the news and noted the deal "doesn't preclude him from taking another head coaching job." Financial terms of the contract weren't immediately released.

Bowles, a former NFL safety, started his coaching career in 1997. His first NFL job came as a secondary coach for the New York Jets in 2000. He became a defensive coordinator for the first time in 2012 with the Philadelphia Eagles on an interim basis and was hired for the full-time role by the Arizona Cardinals in 2013.

His Cardinals defenses ranked seventh (2013) and fifth (2014) in points allowed, which led to his first full-time head coaching opportunity with the Jets, beginning in 2015. He compiled a 24-40 record across four years in New York. He also went 2-1 as an interim head coach for the Miami Dolphins in 2011.

Bowles was fired by the Jets after the 2018 season but quickly joined the Bucs' staff under Bruce Arians. He was part of the staff that helped guide Tampa Bay to last season's championship. His defense held the high-powered Kansas City Chiefs to nine points in February's Super Bowl LV triumph.

"Give Todd credit for the job they did on us," Chiefs head coach Andy Reid told reporters. "He got us."

It was the latest masterpiece defensive game plan from Bowles, who was voted the NFL Assistant Coach of the Year with the Cardinals in 2014.

The 57-year-old New Jersey native, whose first work as a head coach came with a Jets squad in the midst of rebuilding the roster, said in February he'll be more selective when it comes to accepting another head coaching job.

"If the opportunity is right, it will come up," Bowles told reporters. "I just want to be the best coach I can be. I would love to have that opportunity again."

Tampa Bay kicks off the regular season Sept. 9 when it hosts the Dallas Cowboys.