While NFL fans remain focused on the postseason with the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs set to face off in Super Bowl LVII, those franchises elminated from the playoffs begin to make changes toward a better outcome next season. That’s especially true this week with regard to changes among coordinators in the AFC East. Who’s in, who’s out? Let’s discuss the moves made this week around the divsion.
Buffalo Bills will run it back
As of this writing, both defensive coordinator/assistant head coach Leslie Frazier and offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey are set to return for the Bills next season. While some among Bills Mafia have called for the team to move on from one or both coordinators, retaining both should allow the Bills to remain successful and competitive in the league.
New England Patriots reunite with former Texans HC
After fielding a subpar offense with no clearcut offensive coordinator during the 2022 season, the Patriots have hired former Houston Texans head coach Bill O’Brien as the team’s next offensive coordinator. O’Brien was the offensive coordinator for Alabama in 2022 and rejoins New England following a four-year stint with the team earlier in his career. Alabama’s offense was one of the nation’s top units the past two seasons under the guidance of O’Brien. With the Patriots, O’Brien will be tasked with getting quarterback Mac Jones back on track for his third season in the NFL. The challenge there could be with Jones now having to adjust and adapt to a third different offensive playcaller in as many years in the league.
New York Jets hire former Broncos HC
The Jets made an eyebrow-raising hire this past week, naming Nathaniel Hackett as their new offensive coordinator. You may recall that Hackett was just relieved of his duties as the head coach of the Denver Broncos, unable to finish his first season at the helm. Additionally, Hackett was the offensive coordinator for the Green Bay Packers when Aaron Rodgers won back to back NFL MVP awards. With the uncertainty regarding Rodgers’ future in Green Bay, speculation about the Jets engaging in trade talks with the Packers has begun.
Miami Dolphins tap Fangio to direct defense
Perhaps the most notable hire of the week was the Dolphins naming Vic Fangio as their defensive coordinator. Fangio was considered by some to be a diamond among available coaches, spending the 2022 season as a defensive assistant for the Super Bowl-bound Philadelphia Eagles. Miami has made Fangio the highest-paid defensive coordinator in the league, and with good reason. Fangio’s defenses have always ranked in the top of the league in points allowed per game. Clearly, the hope is that Fangio’s zone scheme will be a better fit for the players in South Beach.