During Tuesday’s interview session with assembled media at the 2023 NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, IN, Buffalo Bills general manager Brandon Beane fielded questions about the news regarding defensive coordinator/assistant head coach Leslie Frazier taking a year off from football.
It would appear Frazier’s decision came as a huge surprise to One Bills Drive. In a tweet by WIVB Sports Director Josh Reed, Frazier reportedly reached out to the team last week regarding his decision to step back, but not in a move toward retirement.
Brandon Beane: last week Leslie reached out. He doesn’t want to retire but wants to step back.— Josh Reed (@4JoshReed) February 28, 2023
The usually candid Beane went on to say, as reported on Twitter by The Buffalo News Bills beat writer Jay Skurski, that Leslie Frazier would have been the team’s defensive coordinator for the 2023 season, if he wanted to return for the 2023 season.
Brandon Beane confirms that Leslie Frazier would have been the defensive coordinator in 2023 had he wanted to coach. #Bills— Jay Skurski (@JaySkurski) February 28, 2023
A short time following those tweets by Reed and Skurski, ESPN Buffalo Bills reporter Alaina Getzenberg tweeted that Frazier was “adamant that he wants to return to coaching.” Getzenberg again confirmed that had Frazier wanted to return to the Bills in 2023, the job was his.
Brandon Beane said that they when Leslie Frazier told them he was taking a step back, they asked if he was retiring, but he was adamant that he wants to return to coaching. Beane said that if Frazier wasn’t taking a step back, he would be the team’s defensive coordinator— Alaina Getzenberg (@agetzenberg) February 28, 2023
While ours is not the business to speculate on those reasons Leslie Frazier has for stepping away from the team this season, we can only wish him the best in the coming year. As it would seem head coach Sean McDermott and the organization hope to continue working with Frazier, it is important to note that decisions don’t need to be made on the front today, nor would it seem any clarity on that specific matter will be made available to the public at this point. Brandon Beane did, however, admit that he doesn’t know if Frazier will return for the 2024 season, and the first name he mentioned when discussing the “minds” in the defensive coaching room was Bobby Babich, followed by Al Holcomb.
Clearly, there will be much to learn in the coming weeks and months. Stay tuned to Buffalo Rumblings for the latest news on Leslie Frazier and the coaching moves made to replace him for the 2023 NFL season.