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New Bucs GM Jason Licht embraces challenge of helping transform Buccaneers into winners

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    New Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht gestures while speaking during an NFL football news conference Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014, in Tampa, Fla. Licht becomes the fifth general manager in team history. He takes over a team that hasn't made the playoffs since 2007. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)The Associated Press

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    New Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht, right, smiles as he poses for a photo with new head coach Lovie Smith during an NFL football news conference Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014, in Tampa, Fla. Licht becomes the fifth general manager in team history. He takes over a team that hasn't made the playoffs since 2007. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)The Associated Press

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    New Tampa Bay Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht laughs as he holds his son Theo during an NFL football news conference Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014, in Tampa, Fla. Licht becomes the fifth general manager in team history. He takes over a team that hasn't made the playoffs since 2007. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)The Associated Press

Jason Licht welcomes the challenge of turning the Tampa Bay Buccaneers into a championship contender, and the team's new general manager doesn't believe it'll take long to do it.

Without making any bold predictions or offering a specific timetable for success, Licht said Thursday that the Bucs already have a solid foundation in place and that he's confident he and incoming coach Lovie Smith will form a "partnership" that will help the struggling franchise end its cycle of losing.

The Bucs have missed the playoff the past six seasons. They haven't won a postseason game since the 2002 Super Bowl run that produced the club's only NFL title.

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AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org