Bruce Arians, who was named the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' new head coach earlier this week, is quickly getting the top level of his coaching staff in place. On Friday, the Buccaneers announced the additions of Keith Armstrong as special teams coordinator and Harold Goodwin as assistant head coach/run game coordinator. The team had previously revealed that Todd Bowles, the New York Jets' head coach for the last four seasons, would serve as Arians' defensive coordinator.
Like Bowles, Armstrong and Goodwin have previous ties to Arian, though in Armstrong's case the connection was forged more than 30 years ago.
Armstrong played at Temple under Arians and then began his coaching career with Arians and the Owls in 1987 as a graduate assistant. He was hired away the very next year by the University of Miami, beginning a long and successful career at both the college and pro levels. Armstrong and Arians hadn't intersected professionally since but that long-awaited reunion will now happen in Tampa.
In contrast, Arians and Goodwin spent more than a decade coaching together in the NFL before Arians' retirement after the 2017 season. Goodwin joined the Pittsburgh Steelers as the team's offensive line coach in 2007, the same year that Arians was promoted from wide receivers coach to offensive coordinator. The two shared in Pittsburgh's success over the next five years, including five winning seasons, four playoff berths, two Super Bowl appearances and one championship. Arians and Goodwin both left for the Colts in 2012 then joined the Cardinals together in 2013.
Arizona's offense flourished under Goodwin, improving from 31st in points and 32nd in yards the year before his arrival to 16th and 12th, respectively, in 2013. In 2015, the Cardinals led the NFL in yards and scored the league's second-most points as Arizona went 13-3, won the NFC West and advanced to the conference championship game. Quarterback Carson Palmer threw for 4,671 yards and 35 touchdowns and finished with a passer rating of 104.7. Arizona also finished sixth in the NFL in scoring in 2016.
Armstrong has been an NFL coach for a quarter-century, most of that focused on special teams. He joins the Buccaneers after an 11-year stint in the same position for the Atlanta Falcons. During his tenure in Atlanta he coached a pair of special teams Pro Bowl selections in Eric Weems and Devin Hester. Armstrong was also the special teams coach for the Chicago Bears from 1997-2000 and the Miami Dolphins from 2001-07. He began his NFL coaching career with Atlanta in 1994, tutoring the safeties. Before jumping to the NFL, Armstrong had stops at Akron, Oklahoma State and Notre Dame.