When the Buccaneers decided to fire Lovie Smith, the natural -- and expected -- replacement was offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter. The Buccaneers are set to make the move, with CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora confirming the Bucs plan to make Koetter the official replacement in Tampa Bay.
Here's three things to know about the hire.
1. Continuity rules the day: Koetter is another guy who is moving from offensive coordinator to head coach (along with Ben McAdoo, hired by the Giants). The move is huge for Jameis Winston, who will now work in the same system that saw him thrive as a rookie while throwing for 4,000-plus yards.
2. Personnel power for GM: With Koetter running the show and Lovie no longer in town, it means GM Jason Licht has full personnel power in Tampa. Given what he has done over the past two years, that's a good thing -- he has done a good job starting to turn the proverbial ship around for Tampa.
His first draft featured Mike Evans, Austin Sefarian-Jenkins and Charles Sims. Winston, Ali Marpet and Kwon Alexander make the 2015 class look impressive as well.
3. Koetter was surprised as you were: By the Lovie firing anyway. As Pete Prisco wrote Monday following some concerns about whether or not Koetter helped undermine Lovie:
"For anyone to suggest that offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, who is the leading candidate to replace Smith, had anything to do with it, they are way off base," Prisco wrote. "Koetter took the job because of his relationship with Smith and, moreover, he was having his second hip replacement surgery the night it all went down. From what I was told, Koetter was as shocked as anybody when it all played out."
The hip replacement surgery could be what delayed the Bucs official hiring.