NFL coaches and general managers are bracing for a purge of the defensive coordinator ranks in 2021, with upwards of half the league potentially looking for new coordinators.
The expectation of about eight new coaches to be hired -- putting together new staffs -- combined with many teams already mulling making a coordinator change for next season has created a climate of potentially unprecedented change on that side of the ball. With teams generally opting to hire offensive-minded coaches for head coaching vacancies, thus limiting the pool of defensive coaches lost to those jobs, options will abound for teams looking for a new defensive play caller in 2021.
The Texans, Falcons and Lions are already without a full-time head coach for 2021, with the Jets and Jaguars seen as inevitable coaching changes, and the Bears, Broncos and Chargers mentioned the most in the industry as potential reboots. Beyond that, the Seahawks and 49ers have already reached out about potential staff additions on that side of the ball for next year, sources said, and the Washington Football Team, Raiders, Packers, Eagles, Cardinals, Bengals and Cowboys all generating chatter around the league about potentially altering some staff on the defensive side of the ball for next season.
Saints defensive coordinator Dennis Allen, Bucs defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh and Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus are some of the top head coaching candidates on that side of the ball (with Rams defensive coordinator Brandon Staley very young but starting to generate a real buzz as well), which could obviously lead to further needs developing at the coordinator spot for any teams that lose them to a head coaching vacancy.