Nolan to Denver; Who's Next for Packers?
That report appears to have been premature, as Nolan is headed instead to Denver to run the Broncos' defense under new head coach Josh McDaniels.
With Nolan apparently out of the picture, the Packers now have to move in a different direction.
The obvious "next option" is former Jacksonville coordinator Gregg Williams, but there is a problem. Williams appears to have the Saints on his radar screen.
If Williams isn't headed to Green Bay, who is? Should Packer fans be worried about this?
There were reports over the weekend that Philadelphia secondary coach Sean McDermott was an under-the-radar candidate. Of course, the reports effectively move him out from under that proverbial radar, as does his team's success in the postseason.
But what if Philadelphia wins the NFC title? Does head coach Mike McCarthy want to potentially wait another three weeks to interview McDermott? He can't be interviewed for an assistant coaching position (considered to be a lateral move, even if it's position coach to coordinator) until the Eagles are done playing football. Those three weeks can be used to plan the offseason and work ahead on the draft, after all.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel speculates that position coaches on teams that are done playing may be more closely looked at for the job. Rams interim head coach Jim Haslett is also mentioned, but that's only in play if he's not retained by the Rams.
Or maybe he'll look at a former linebacker who really, really, really wants to coach. And mix protein shakes.
But should McCarthy settle? If he wants McDermott, and he thinks that it would be a good fit, why not wait? Another year of failed defense could spell a failed head-coaching tenure for McCarthy. He has to make a good hire here, primarily because former coordinator Bob Sanders was such a bad one.
The fact that linebackers coach Winston Moss is still a candidate for the job (assuming he doesn't become a head coach somewhere else) is a heavy indictment of the previous coordinator. Moss getting the job would represent little schematic change in what the Packers do. There is the chance of some personnel turnover, especially on the defensive line, and there will be changes in how the Packers game-plan and call defensive plays. The overall basis for the Packers' defensive scheme - aggressive, physical man-to-man coverage on the outside and very little blitzing - won't change with Moss.
Instead, it will be an implied admission that Sanders was a bad coordinator. Which he was.