The big news out of 1 Buc Place (can we still call it that?) is that Gruden and Bruce Allen have been signed to 3 year deals. Which would be impressive if contracts actually meant anything in the NFL. If the Glazers (who are the 2nd richest owners in the NFL) really wanted to fire Gruden next season I doubt a three year contract is holding them back. Contracts in the NFL are about as meaningless as primaries in New Hampshire and Iowa SHOULD be.
That being written, Gruden and Company certainly deserved to have their contracts extended past next season. Gruden inherited an aging team, won a Super Bowl in the team's last window of opportunity to do so, and has been forced to rebuild without four high draft picks. For all the criticism thrown at him Gruden has been remarkably successful for the amount of talent he has had.
If there is a fair complaint to be throw at Gruden it is that he is a very poor talent evaluator when it comes to draft picks. He is average at best. And since Allen's real skill is negotiating contracts and cap management it might be a good idea for the Bucs to pick up a better talent evaluator to put in the front office.
ALSTOTT TO RETIRE
This isn't really much of news either, if Alstott didn't retire this season there was a good chance his head would simply fall off. The long time fan favorite should have retired a long time, in 2003 he had a vertebrae removed from his neck, replaced with bone from a cadaver and had the entire thing fused with titanium. Alstott was the NFL version of Frankenstein.
This has always been one of the things I felt uncomfortable about with the NFL, players sacrificing their long-term health for short term gratitude. We like to talk about how tough these guys are but when you see 55 year old players walking around with canes you can understand why Tiki Barber and Barry Sanders wanted to get out early.
Finally Gruden announced he has a "mystery candidate" to fill an assistant coaching slot. Currently the Bucs are looking for runningbacks and quarterbacks coaches so unless they announce Mike Alstott is the new quarterbacks coach I'm not sure which hire would "shock" me.