Chicago Sun-Times

Ties that bind in Tampa still prevent assistants from promotions

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The assistants have changed but the policy remains the same.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will not let assistant coaches out of their contracts to take jobs elsewhere, even if they involve promotions.

The Bears found out in 2004 when Lovie Smith and Jerry Angelo tried to land Rod Marinelli, then the defensive line coach and assistant head coach with the Bucs, as defensive coordinator. Tampa wouldn't allow him to leave. Marinelli found out contracts were more binding than family ties when he became the head coach in Detroit and tried to hire Bucs linebackers coach Joe Barry, his son-in-law, to be his defensive coordinator. Barry couldn't leave until his contract was up the next year.

The Bears finally have Marinelli, although he's the line coach and assistant head coach, Barry has returned to the Bucs after the whole thing blew up in Detroit, and Bucs quarterbacks coach Greg Olson is the latest one feeling the shackles. Olson, who worked as the Bears quarterbacks coach in 2003, has been denied opportunities to leave for promotions with at least two teams, an NFL source said.

New Kansas City coach Todd Haley, who served as the wide receivers coach for the Bears from 2001 to 2003 working with Olson, attempted to bring him on board as the assistant head coach as the Chiefs retained holdover Chan Gailey as offensive coordinator.

The source said Olson, who is under contract to the Bucs through 2009 and was originally hired by ousted coach Jon Gruden, had an opportunity to go to Arizona and fill the vacancy created by Haley's departure for Kansas City. Haley served as the offensive coordinator for two years under Ken Whisenhunt.

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This page contains a single entry by Brad Biggs published on February 25, 2009 5:55 PM.

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