The Buffalo Bills announced two coaching moves on Tuesday, the day before the start of the 2022 NFL League Year. Mike Shula joins the team as a senior offensive assistant and Eric Washington was promoted from defensive line coach to senior defensive assistant/defensive line coach.
For Washington, this would seemingly make him the defensive coordinator-in-waiting should defensive coordinator/assistant head coach Leslie Frazier depart, similar to the expanded role Ken Dorsey was given prior to his hiring as offensive coordinator. Washington has been the Bills’ defensive line coach for two seasons and has previous defensive coordinator experience, serving as the Carolina Panthers’ DC in 2018 and 2019. Prior to that he was the defensive line coach from 2011 to 2017 under Bills head coach Sean McDermott.
Shula was one of the names we had looked at for possible offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach openings, so adding him to the staff in this role feels like a no-brainer. He has loads of experience and close ties to McDermott as well as Ken Dorsey so it always made sense. Shula was the offensive coordinator from 2013 to 2017 when McDermott was the defensive coordinator of the Panthers from 2011 to 2016. Dorsey was his QBs coach for Shula’s entire time as offensive coordinator. Shula has called plays for multiple teams, but was fired after the 2017 season in Carolina along with Dorsey. Shula went to work with the New York Giants as offensive coordinator for two seasons before being Denver’s QB coach for the last two seasons. All along he’s worked with Pat Shurmur, another colleague of McDermott’s. (Pat’s son, Kyle, is a defensive quality control coach for the Bills.)
This is another example of putting experienced offensive coaches around Dorsey during his first time calling plays. Shula has 11 years as an NFL offensive coordinator under his belt and QB coach Joe Brady, OL coach Aaron Kromer, and TE coach Rob Boras have all held the offensive coordinator title.