Lovie Smith is a slow-talking Texan, but he wants his teams to play fast. That's always been true on defense and special teams, where hyperspeedy athletes fill his roster and swarm to the football. But this season it also could apply to the Bucs' offense, which would like to run a no-huddle, up-tempo, blur attack. "It's a little like in basketball," Smith said. "Do you want that slow-down approach? Or do you want up-tempo, running up and down? We want to be a fast team — period — in all phases, and this kind of leads to that (on offense), too."

In last week's 20-14 preseason loss to the Dolphins, offensive coordinator Jeff Tedford tried to put some pep in the step of the sluggish offense. Quarterback Josh McCown went no-huddle on nearly every possession, with mixed results.

Versions of the spread offense have been around since Darrel "Mouse" Davis implemented the run-and-shoot at Portland State in 1975. That offense moved from college to the NFL again with the arrival of Oregon coach Chip Kelly to the Eagles last year.

Though there are plenty of variations, there also are a few constants: There is no huddle, the quarterback takes a shotgun snap, and his tools are one running back (or none) and four or five receivers. The idea is to create stress on the defense with a rapid pace and identify mismatches by spreading defenders across the field, from sideline to sideline.