Vikings Rivals Predicted to Lose Both Coordinators to Head Coaching Gigs in 2024
One of the biggest risers in 2023 was the Detroit Lions, who emerged on top of the NFC North with a 12-5 record this season.
Now, the Vikings rivals find themselves in the midst of a playoff race as they hunt for their first ever Super Bowl title. However, when that playoff run comes to an end, the team will face a number of questions on their coaching staff.
Currently, there are seven teams with vacant head coaching positions, and Dan Graziano of ESPN recently released a list of predictions for who will land those coaching gigs. In the article, Graziano predicted that the Lions will lose both their offensive and defensive coordinators to these jobs.
Vikings Rivals Predicted to Lose Both Coordinators
Firstly, Graziano suggested that Lions offensive coordinator, Ben Johnson, will land the head coaching job with the Washington Commanders next season. Washington finished the year with a 4-13 record, and they hold the No. 2 overall pick in this spring’s draft.
They are widely expected to be a candidate to draft a quarterback, so Johnson would be able to mold that player to fit his scheme at the NFL level.
Over the past two seasons in Detroit, Johnson has helped turn the Lions offense into one of the most electrifying units in the NFL. In both seasons as OC, Detroit ranked fifth in points scored per game, averaging 26.6 points in 2022 and 27.1 points in 2023.
Here is what Graziano had to say of the prediction:
New Commanders owner Josh Harris already landed his top target for GM in Adam Peters. Many people around the league believe Harris has been focused on Johnson as his top choice for coach, though there are some who think Slowik and Macdonald are still possibilities.
Harris’ process so far has been thorough but not slow. I believe he really wants Johnson, and he and Peters are in position to make that happen — even if it’s just about getting an agreement in place that can’t be finalized until after the Lions’ season ends.
Meanwhile, Detroit’s defensive coordinator, Aaron Glenn, is predicted to replace Mike Vrabel in Tennessee. This makes sense as another former NFL player who can carry over the same intensity and relatability that Vrabel possessed in that locker room.
Detroit’s defense still has ranked among the bottom of the league in a number of categories, but there were notable improvements to that side of the ball in 2023. Particularly against the run, the Lions turned into a very strong group in 2023, allowing just 3.7 yards per carry.
The Titans are in the middle of a major transition phase as both Derrick Henry and Ryan Tannehill hit free agency this offseason. This position would allow Glenn to begin forming a roster in his own fashion from the ground up.
This is what Graziano wrote of Glenn potentially getting the Titans job:
I’ve been told by a couple of people close to this situation to keep an eye on Glenn as a strong candidate. The Titans are casting a wide and diverse net, and this is one of the tougher ones to call at this point, but Glenn has appeal as a former player, as a part of what Dan Campbell has built in Detroit and as the coordinator who graded out the best of any on either side of the ball in a recent NFLPA poll of players. He will get a head-coaching job sooner rather than later, and he could be the guy the Titans pick to work with GM Ran Carthon on their rebuild.
These are two very valuable members of the Lions’ staff, and if they were to depart, Detroit would need to do a lot of work to replace them for the 2024 season.
Editor’s Note: Statistics for this article were found via Pro Football Reference.
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Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho and managing editor of PurplePTSD.com. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys running, gaming, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. Check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.