The Detroit Lions have officially hired Jim Bob Cooter as their new quarterbacks coach. It was first reported last week that Cooter was set to get the job, and now he is officially a part of the coaching staff.
Cooter is headed to Detroit after serving as an offensive assistant for the Denver Broncos in 2013. Ian Rapoport tweeted that losing Cooter is a "tough blow" for the Broncos, as he was "really valuable" to them. Also, ESPN's Jeff Legwold reported on Sunday that Cooter "will be difficult to replace" for Denver. According to Legwold, Cooter played a "key part" in Denver's "gameplanning infrastructure" on offense, and Cooter was seemingly pretty highly thought of despite not being a position coach. Here's more from Legwold:
Cooter had just completed his first season with the Broncos in 2013, but he was a key part of the offense’s gameplanning infrastructure given his work in preparing scouting reports on opposing defenses, his ability to spot trends and potential matchups on gameday and his day-to-day work with Manning. Those who know Cooter from the Broncos’ and the other staffs he’s worked for, including the Colts and Kansas City Chiefs, say Cooter was able to contribute new ideas into the offense and that he is considered a future playcaller as well.
Legwold went on to suggest that Cooter would have received a promotion in Denver if the Broncos had lost some of their offensive assistants to other teams. Since Denver made it to the Super Bowl, offensive coordinator Adam Gase didn't receive a head coaching job this year, and there was no room for someone like Cooter to move up the ranks in Denver as a result. This worked out well for the Lions, as they were able to hire Cooter to be their quarterbacks coach.
Cooter spent a few years as an offensive assistant in Indianapolis with Jim Caldwell, and now the two have been reunited in Detroit. Throw in Joe Lombardi as the offensive coordinator and there seems to be a really solid group of coaches set to work with Matthew Stafford. Going forward, there's really no excuse for Stafford to not improve given all of the resources the Lions are providing him to get better.