Jason Licht is optimistic about his Tampa Bay Buccaneers heading into the upcoming campaign despite not qualifying for the postseason since 2007.
Appearing on "SportsCenter with Scott Van Pelt" Thursday night, the Bucs general manager said he believes the pairing of Tom Brady and head coach Bruce Arians gives his team an extra sense of urgency to compete for a Super Bowl.
"I don't have a lot of concerns on that right now," Licht said, according to ESPN's Jenna Laine. "We have a head coach that, to be quite frank, isn't gonna be here for the next 15, 20 years coaching the Buccaneers. So I think it was actually a perfect marriage: You've got two guys that have got something to prove; they want to win, they want to win now; they've got the same mindset."
Both Brady and Arians are in the latter stages of their NFL careers but will give Tampa Bay its best chance at success for the first time in recent years. The 67-year-old head coach briefly retired after the 2017 season before returning to coach the Bucs, and was an integral part of landing the first-time free agent.
"Getting Tom here, quite frankly, started with hiring Bruce last year," Licht said. "I don't know if we would be in this situation right now without Bruce Arians as our head coach. And they're kind of living parallel lives right now; they've got something to prove, and they want to do it now."
Though Brady is known for his dominant personality and strong leadership, Licht noted that the legendary quarterback's modesty and willingness to learn is winning over his teammates during the early stages of the offseason.
"He didn't want to come in here and be the almighty," he said. "He just wants to make sure that his teammates respect him. And he's got something to prove."