Detroit Lions coaches seem to be dropping like flies now. First, Teryl Austin left to pursue a defensive coordinator job with the Bengals. Then, it turned out Austin brought defensive line assistant Matt Raich with him, too. Now, defensive line coach Kris Kocurek is heading to Miami.
None of this is all that surprising. After all, when you bring in a new head coach, there is almost always a huge turnover among the entire staff. There’s likely more changes coming, but it’s not clear how much. All of that will become much clearer once Matt Patricia is officially hired.
But today’s Question of the Day is:
Are there any current Lions coaches that the team cannot afford to lose?
My answer: First, let’s look at all the remaining coaches still under contract, according to the official website.
- Offensive coordinator: Jim Bob Cooter
- WR coach: Robert Prince
- RB coach: David Walker
- TE coach: Al Golden
- QB coach: Brian Callahan
- OL/quality control coach: Michael McCarthy
- Offensive assistant: Evan Rothstein
- Coaching assistant: Payton McCollum
- DBs/CBs coach: Tony Oden
- Defensive quality control coach: Steven Williams
- LB coach: Bill Sheridan
- DBs/S coach: Alan Williams
- Defensive assistant: George Godsey
- Special teams coordinator: Joe Marciano
- Assistant special teams coach: Devin Fitzsimmons
- Strength and conditioning: Harold Nash Jr.
- Assistant strength and conditioning coach: Josh Schuler
Among those 17 coaches, there are several I’d like to see stick around—but not a lot that are irreplaceable. Joe Marciano has done a fantastic job as special teams coordinator, and I think the Lions would be wise to keep him around.
Aside from him, I think quarterbacks coach Brian Callahan may be the only other guy that the Lions can’t afford to lose. A truly harmonious relationship between quarterback and coach is something that is invaluable to a team and rarer than you’d think. The Lions clearly feel the same way, as they’ve blocked Callahan from interviewing elsewhere for a coordinator job.
Jets tried to interview Lions QB coach Brian Callahan last year but were denied permission to speak with him.— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) January 17, 2018
As for guys like Bill Sheridan or even Jim Bob Cooter, I honestly think if Bob Quinn/Matt Patricia want to truly put their stamp on the team, Iit makes sense to clean house and to put coaches in place that they truly trust.