The 2019-20 regular season is behind us, and multiple teams have moved on from their current coaching situation. The Dallas Cowboys went with the experienced Mike McCarthy, while the New York Giants took a risk on Joe Judge.
As a result, we have seen multiple coaching candidates get passed up on. Some claim it’s because of racial inequality, while others believe that front offices were eager to fill the position as quickly as possible. Here we dissect some of the candidates who missed the cut:
At one point in time, we believed that McDaniels would be the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts. After the other head coaching vacancies filled up rather quickly, the Cleveland Browns interviewed Josh McDaniels on Friday. As a result, they elected to move forward with former Minnesota Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski.
McDaniels is still viewed as one of the top coordinators in the game, as he took an aging New England Patriots offense and totaled the seventh-most points per game (26.2). At the moment, it’s widely believed that McDaniels will some day take over for long-time head coach Bill Belichick when the factor of retirement comes into play.
When considering the success of the Kansas City Chiefs, Eric Bieniemy has assisted with Patrick Mahomes producing back-to-back seasons of 4,000+ passing yards. Depending on where you stand with the ‘Rooney Rule’, there are an endless amount of theories as to why Bieniemy didn’t receive an official head coaching offer for the upcoming season.
Teams such as the Washington Redskins and Carolina Panthers filled their head coaching vacancies rather quickly, while the Chiefs went on to prepare for upcoming postseason games. Perhaps it’s a flaw in the NFL where eliminated teams are permitted to make staffing changes while others are in play, but Bieniemy will continue to thrive under Kansas City’s system for the time being.
The San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator interviewed with the Cleveland Browns on January 4th, but was not considered in the final stages of the selection process. This comes as a surprise, as Saleh has helped San Francisco en route to becoming the top defense against the pass.
Experience has never been an issue with Saleh, who has spent time with the Jacksonville Jaguars, Seattle Seahawks, and Houston Texans prior to joining the 49ers. Based on the current candidates who missed the cut, Saleh is reportedly a “top candidate for years to come”.
Earlier in the season, the Dallas Cowboys were rumored to be interested in former Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer. When asked about the vacancy at the time, Meyer stated he would “absolutely” take the job if it was offered to him.
Instead, Jerry Jones and company went with a more conservative option in Mike McCarthy. In his 17-year college tenure, Meyer has totaled a winning percentage of 85.4% (187-32). In Bowl games, his winning percentage is 80% (12-3).
Don “Wink” Martindale
Teams were often interested in members of the Baltimore Ravens coaching staff, as the New York Giants interviewed Martindale for their then-head coaching vacancy. With more than 30 years of coaching experience, it was odd to see teams have a lack of interest in someone of his caliber.
Despite an early playoff exit, the Ravens defenses was at most points during the season. The team ranked fifth against the rush and sixth against the pass in large help to Martindale’s strategy.
Another experienced name in Greg Roman has spent over 22 years in the NFL. In fact, he first began with the Carolina Panthers as part of their expansion. As a result, the team won the division title in their second season.
With ‘Black Monday’ playing a role in teams hiring their head coaches rather quickly, both Roman and Martindale are expected to be retained by the Baltimore Ravens. The offense did not disappoint, as Lamar Jackson totaled an MVP-caliber season.
Photo Credit- St Josephs News