When is a football playbook not a PlayBook? When it's an iPad! The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are now equipping all of the players on the team with iPads, and both players and management seem to love the idea. According to the St. Petersburg Times, the Tampa Bay players now just turn on their iPads to get up to speed rather than leafing through a phone directory-sized printed book to memorize plays.
The team started its love affair with iPads when coach Raheem Morris apparently used one to watch video of team prospects with GM Mark Dominik and player personnel director Dennis Hickey. Buccaneer players used to need to request a copy of a DVD if they wanted to watch film of past games, and then they were constantly using the fast-forward button on the remote to view plays that were applicable to their position. Now, the players simply flick through plays to watch those that are important to them.
Morris said that it took about two minutes for Buccaneer co-chairman Bryan Glazer to approve the purchase of 90 iPad 2s. Many of the players listen to their own personal soundtracks while watching past game footage and studying plays that are downloaded to the devices automatically. Should a player lose one of the iPads on the road -- while visiting the New England Patriots, for example -- the team can wipe all of the plays from the device remotely.
The Bucs are the first NFL team to embrace the iPad, but certainly won't be the last. As a baseball fan, I won't be happy until MLB players are using their iPads in the dugouts.