The decision to suspend receiver Mike Evans for one game was only part of the league’s reaction to Sunday’s feud between the Bucs and Saints. The NFL also had a message for the team and former head coach Bruce Arians.
According to a league source with knowledge of the situation, the NFL sent a warning letter to Arians and the Buccaneers in the wake of Sunday’s incident.
Arians was generally fine in the bench area, but he was clearly in the white stripe reserved for officials, players and coaches during the altercation. He was also clearly involved in the verbal aspect of the kerfuffle.
The details of the warning are unknown at this time. Supposedly, the Buccaneers will face potential penalties during the game, and Arian will face potential discipline in the form of a fine or possibly even a ban from the bench area. Anyway, it probably won’t come to that.
“He will obey,” said the source.
The league realizes that there is a potential problem if a former head coach serves as an unofficial agitator and/or otherwise acts as if he is still the coach even though he is not. Good for the competition to shut it down quickly and resolutely.