NFC Coaching Changes
August 6, 2018
By Joe Nelson
Seven teams made head coaching changes after last season and the vast majority of teams around the league have made offensive or defensive coordinator changes. Here is a quick look at some of those staff moves in the NFC.
DALLAS COWBOYS: The Cowboys have one of the longest tenured coaching staffs with both coordinators back under Jason Garrett. Rod Marinelli has been DC since 2014 and Scott Linehan OC since 2014 while Garrett has been the HC since 2011 and with the team since 2007.
NEW YORK GIANTS: After going 11-5 in 2016, the wheels fell off last season and Ben McAdoo was fired. Pat Shurmur takes over after leading Minnesota’s offense last season and with two years with Cleveland as a HC under his belt. Long-time NFL assistant Mike Shula will be the OC serving in that role in Carolina the past five seasons. James Bettcher served as the DC with Arizona the past three years and will take over that role in New York.
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES: Frank Reich took over as the head coach in Indianapolis and wide receivers coach Mike Groh is the new offensive coordinator for the Eagles, his first time in that role though Doug Pederson takes on a bigger role leading the offense than most head coaches.
WASHINGTON REDSKINS: Matt Cavanaugh (OC) and Greg Manusky (DC) are back for second seasons in those roles under Jay Gruden. A few other minor staff changes were made in Washington for a potentially critical season for Gruden’s fifth year while the offense replaces Kirk Cousins at QB.
CHICAGO BEARS: The Bears hired former Chiefs offensive coordinator Matt Nagy to take over as head coach. Former Oregon head coach Mark Helfrich is Nagy’s OC with no NFL experience on his resume. Vic Fangio will stay on as DC through the coaching change, with the team in that role since 2015 and serving as DC with four other NFL teams in his career.
DETROIT LIONS: The Lions fired Jim Caldwell despite back-to-back 9-7 seasons and a 36-28 record in four seasons while responsible for three of the team’s four winning seasons in the past 17 years. Matt Patricia is the new head coach after 14 years as an assistant at New England the past six as DC. Jim Bob Cooter was retained as the OC while Paul Pasqualoni was hired as DC after a well traveled run in the college and NFL ranks with Patricia an assistant when Pasqualoni was the head coach as Syracuse.
GREEN BAY PACKERS: Mike Pettine is returning to the NFL as the new Green Bay defensive coordinator following a long and mixed run under Dom Capers. Pettine was a successful DC for the Jets and Bills before a failed HC stop in Cleveland in 2014-15. Former Packers OC Joe Philbin is back with the team after being HC in Miami and more recently an assistant in Indianapolis. Edgar Bennett (OC) and Alex Van Pelt (QBs) were fired after last season.
MINNESOTA VIKINGS: Pat Shurmur leaves as OC to take over in New York while John DeFilippo takes over as OC after being QB coach in Philadelphia. He has an entirely new QB staff to work with.
ATLANTA FALCONS: After the Super Bowl season in 2016, the Falcons had a big staff shake-up with mew coordinators on both sides of the ball. The key staff remains for 2018 for far more stability than most with Steve Sarkisian in the OC role and Marquand Manuel as the DC.
CAROLINA PANTHERS: The Panthers lost DC Steve Wilks to Arizona and Eric Washington will be the team’s third DC in as many years. A first-time DC he has been with the team since 2011 as the defensive line coach. Well traveled 66-year-old Norv Turner is the team’s new OC in that capacity with his sixth different team after firing Mike Shula.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS: The Saints made several changes ahead of last season but got positive results sticking with Dennis Allen as DC now entering his fourth season in that role. Pete Carmichael is has been the OC in New Orleans since 2009.
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS: Defensive line coach Jay Hayes was let go last winter for one of few changes for Tampa Bay despite a disappointing 2017 season. Brentson Buckner is his replacement while former Atlanta HC Mike Smith is still the DC. Todd Monken will be exclusively the OC in 2018 after a shared title last season as also the WR coach.
ARIZONA CARDINALS: Bruce Arians retired and Arizona hired Steve Wilks as the new head coach. Wilks has been an assistant with Carolina since 2012 and a defensive assistant in the NFL since 2006. Al Holcomb comes with Wilks as a Carolina assistant and is the new DC. Former Chargers HC Mike McCoy is the OC after being let go midseason in that role with Denver last season and there is an entirely new set of QBs in Arizona.
LOS ANGELES RAMS: After leading the NFL in points, the Rams have to replace OC Matt LaFleur who signed with Tennessee. With big shoes to fill, OL coach Aaron Kromer and TE coach Shane Waldron are sharing the OC duties in 2018. Wade Phillips is back as DC for a second season.
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS: Keena Turner and DeMeco Ryans were given promotions on the staff, but DC Robert Saleh is back for a second season while head coach Kyle Shanahan did not hire an offensive coordinator at his hiring and will remain handling those duties in his second season.
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS: Kris Richard was let go as DC for the Seahawks despite great numbers and former star linebacker Ken Norton, Jr. will be in that role in 2018 after stops in Oakland and San Francisco. Darrell Bevell was also let go after seven years as OC with Brian Schottenhiemer now with his seventh franchise in two decades though not as a NFL OC since 2014 with the Rams.
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