NFL Coaching Changes
During the 2018 season, the NFL saw seven teams let go of their head coaches. Heading into the 2019 season, these organizations look to move on from the dysfunction and chaos they endured as they to find new faces to lead. Some moves were warranted and change will be happily embraced, but other decisions may have left football fans confused.
Arizona Cardinals hire USC offensive coordinator Kliff Kingsbury
By far the most surprising coaching hire we have seen this season. It’s clear Arizona is looking to unlock the potential of their 2018 first-round pick Josh Rosen. Kingsbury’s success with the development of quarterbacks during his five year tenure at Texas Tech is probably what got Arizona to pull the trigger on this hire.
Kingsbury had success developing Patrick Mahomes from a 3-star prospect out of high school into a top pick. He is also credited with making Davis Webb a 3rd round pick and spending a year working with Baker Mayfield before he transferred to Oklahoma.
With this hire, Arizona is hoping to find the next Sean McVay. However, Kingsbury’s success with passing offenses should not put him over coaches with more experience working in the NFL. Arizona ranked 26th in total points allowed last season and has plenty problem that span beyond the quarterback position.
The Cleveland Browns hire their former offensive coordinator Freddie Kitchens
For the two months that Kitchens spent as the offensive coordinator for the Browns, rookie quarterback Baker Mayfield saw a tremendous increase in production. Mayfield’s average total quarterback rating with former offensive coordinator Todd Haley was a meer 78.9. Under Kitchens, Mayfield’s total quarterback rating jumped up to 106.2, a tremendous improvement.
The Brown’s acknowledged Kitchen’s success in the second half of the season and decided to stick with what worked. With Kitchen’s larger role in the organization, the Browns hope to build off the momentum they established in the final eight games of the 2018 season and clinch a playoff berth in 2019.
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers hire former Cardinal’s Head Coach Bruce Arians
The fact that Bruce Arians delayed his retirement to develop Buccaneer’s quarterback Jameis Winston means he must believe in him. Arians mentored Winston when he was a 12-year-old at a southern football camp, so the bond these two share is undeniable.
His time in the NFL, however, has proven that Jameis Winston is a special talent that fails to make the right decisions on and off the field. The trust Arians has in Winston as his quarterback is surprising, especially based on this last season.
This hire could be extremely encouraging to the organization. Maybe Arians can use this position to be the coach that can help get Jameis Winston to Pro-Bowl level. Time will tell if this will work out, but on paper this seems to be a homerun signing for both Winston and the Buccaneers.
Nicholas Prince is a freshman majoring in journalism. To contact him, email him at email@example.com.