With the firing of Ben McAdoo earlier this week, the NFL’s annual coaching carousel has already been set in motion. Around SB Nation, we’ve been asked to look at which assistant coach on our team is most likely to become a head coach in the future, and we went with Leslie Frazier for the Buffalo Bills.
Frazier has already served one term as an NFL head coach from 2011 to 2013 with the Minnesota Vikings. He was 21-31-1 on those seasons with a postseason loss. Frazier was hired on an interim basis in 2010 before assuming the full-time job the following year. He had one season at 10-6, turning around a team that went 3-13 in his first season, which led to Coach of the Year votes and a fourth place finish. He couldn’t sustain that success and was fired just one year later.
Since then, Frazier has had two stints at defensive coordinator for the Buccaneers and now the Bills and hasn’t interviewed for a head coaching job that we know of. But if you look at Buffalo’s staff, there aren’t a lot of up-and-comers:
- Rob Boras was the Rams’ offensive coordinator under Jeff Fisher and was even assistant head coach, a seemingly good path toward an eventual shot. But the offensive challenges under Fisher can’t be ignored. He’ll have to work his way back up. He’s only 47 and has time.
- Bob Babich is another name that might have been considered before. He is a two-time defensive coordinator with the Jaguars under Gus Bradley as well as the Bears and was assistant head coach in Chicago under head coach Lovie Smith. He’s 56 and was with the Chargers for one year as linebackers coach before joining the Bills in the same capacity.
- Gil Byrd has led the turnaround of Buffalo’s defensive backs but has never been a coordinator before and is 56. It seems like a longshot.