It’s looking like Detroit Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin will once again be passed over for a head coaching position. The Los Angeles Rams hired Sean McVay on Thursday, while the Los Angeles Chargers appear to be putting the finishing touches on a deal to make Anthony Lynn their next head coach.
That leaves just the San Francisco 49ers job vacant, and Austin has not been interviewed by that team, nor has he been rumored to be in contention for the job.
So unless the Chargers deal falls through or another unforeseen job opens up after the playoffs, it looks like Austin will return to the Lions for his fourth season as the defensive coordinator.
Today’s Question of the Day is:
Are you okay with Austin returning as the team’s 2016 defensive coordinator?
My answer: I’m very torn with the developments surrounding Austin. 2016 wasn’t kind to the Lions defense. Their best playmakers—Ezekiel Ansah, DeAndre Levy and Darius Slay—all suffered significant injuries that cost them valuable playing time. That being said, Austin couldn’t seem to make anything out of the roster he had. Detroit fell victim to the same offensive tricks week in and week out, and we only saw improvement for a few weeks at the end of November.
That being said, Detroit is expected to go heavy on defense in the offseason, and Austin has proven in the past that he can turn a talented roster into one of the best defenses in the league. There is also something to be said about year-to-year continuity improving a unit’s ability to understand defensive schemes. Detroit will likely be expecting jumps from young players like A’Shawn Robinson and Miles Killebrew next year. With a new defensive coordinator in town, their development would have likely been stunted.
Still, I’m not exactly confident in Austin’s abilities right now.