Detroit Lions and Tampa Bay Buccaneers Could Replace Patriots-Colts as Rivalry of the Next Decade

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Pat Nohe, the Tampa Bay Bucs blogger at The Pewter Plank, and I have collaborated on content in the past. You may remember our forum on the 2009 quarterback class. Well, we’re at it again, this time we’ll be discussing our teams as a whole and their potential for a rivalry between them.

When it comes to rivalries over the past decade, it doesn’t get any better between than the Patriots and Colts. With the quarterback of each team reaching his mid-30s are we nearing the beginning of the end for this great rivalry? If so, could the Bucs and Lions find themseleves at the center of the league’s greatest rivalry of the upcoming decade? It is a topic that Pat and I have both pondered separately and have decided to write about collaboratively. Pat begins by comparing the Bucs to the Colts while I compare the Lions to the Patriots.

Let’s get this party started.

Tom Brady might be the face of the Patriots organization but Bill Belichick is the man that gets credit for bringing everything together. Today he is regarded as one of the coaching greats but it hasn’t always been that way. Belichick coached the Cleveland Browns from 1991 to 1995 and compiled a record of just 36-44. While those years were undoubtedly instrumental in turning Belichick into the coach he is today, they were important to another NFL head coach as well: Jim Schwartz.

After two years as a graduate assistant and two years as a position coach in the college ranks, Jim Schwartz got his first crack at an NFL gig from Bill Belichick as a scout in 1993. He worked under Belichick for three years until moving on to a defensive assistant position with the Baltimore Ravens when Belichick’s tenure in Cleveland came to an end. Jim Schwartz and Bill Belichick may have completely different personalities (I doubt you’ll ever see Belichick on twitter) but it is obvious that certain traits did manage to wear off on Schwartz. Both coaches prefer to say nothing at all than to let out some piece of information out that could be of benefit to his opponent. While the status of a particular injury might not seem like a big deal, it has the potential to change the way an opponent prepares. Both men are smart enough to keep their mouth shut than to allow an opponent to shift their preparations to what they will see rather than what they might see.

The potential parallels go beyond the common bond of the two coaches.

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