Happy 2018! Not-so-happy Black Monday – at least for those coaches around the NFL who have lost their jobs today. Among them is the Detroit Lions' Jim Caldwell, who was fired by the team today after four seasons. Detroit ended 2017 with a 9-7 record and out of the playoffs, which led the franchise to dismiss one of its most successful head coaches of the Super Bowl era.
Lions now have submitted a request to interview Patriots DC Matt Patricia for their HC job, per source.
Patricia serves as the Patriots’ defensive coordinator since 2012. During his tenure, the team never finished outside of the top 10 in scoring, with 2016’s Super Bowl winning unit leading the team in the category. The 43-year old has consistently been among the top head coaching candidates but so far has not left New England. This might change with Detroit, led by former Patriots Director of Pro Scouting Bob Quinn, knocking.
The Lions are not the only team taking a look at Patricia. According to Schefter, the New York Giants are as well. The team has also requested interviews with him as well as Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels:
Giants now have submitted requests to interview Patriots’ DC Matt Patricia and OC Josh McDaniels for their HC job, per source. This could be Patricia’s landing spot.
McDaniels in his second tenure as New England's offensive coordinator. As is the case with Patricia, his units are consistently among the best and most productive in the NFL. His 2007 and 2012 units led the league in scoring, while no other of the Patriots offenses that had McDaniels as coordinator finished outside of the top eight.
While no formal request has been filed by the Indianapolis Colts as of yet, the team is also expected to ask New England for permission to interview McDaniels (per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport). The Chicago Bears, who ousted John Fox today are also candidates to take a look at the 41-year old.
With the Patriots having secured a first-round playoff bye both McDaniels and Patricia, if the Patriots grant teams' requests, will have the time to conduct interviews. Time will tell whether or not any of the two will actually leave New England.
Update I: Patricia is a favorite for the Lions job because he could provide continuity for the offense by retaining the staff.
Per NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, the Arizona Cardinals have also asked to interview Patricia. Rich Hill called the Cardinals the best landing spot for Patricia last week.
The Colts have also officially filed a request to interview McDaniels, per Schefter.
Update II: The Cardinals have also requested to interview Patriots linebackers coach Brian Flores, per Schefter.
Update III: The Bears have officially asked to interview McDaniels, per Ian Rapoport.
Update IV: McDaniels is expected to interview with the Colts on Thursday and the Bears and Giants on Friday, per the Globe’s Ben Volin.
Update V: According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, McDaniels might be on the Tennessee Titans’ radar in case the team exits the postseason on wild card weekend.
Update VI: After the Titans Wild Card round victory, the team’s ownership issued a statement of support for head coach Mike Mularkey, removing Tennessee from McDaniels’ list of potential suitors.
Update VII: The Bears have hired former Chiefs offensive coordinator Matt Nagy, which removes them from contention for Josh McDaniels. Of the teams still waiting to hire a head coach, only the Giants and Colts have interviewed the Patriots offensive coordinator.
Update VIII: It appears as if Matt Patricia is the frontrunner for both the Giants and the Lions head coaching positions. The Patriots' defensive coordinator reportedly prefers the New York gig and “all signs” point to him taking over the Giants.
Update IX: Patricia is a finalist for the Giants and Lions jobs, while McDaniels is a finalist for the Giants and Colts jobs. Linebackers coach Brian Flores is “very much in play” for the Cardinals job, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Update X: According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, Patricia is expected to become the next head coach of the Lions.
Update XI: The Lions, per NFL Network's Albert Breer, have informed other coaching candidates that Matt Patricia will be their next head coach.
Update XII: Offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels is expected to join the Indianapolis Colts as their new head coach.
Update XIII: The Arizona Cardinals have hired Steve Wilks as their new head coach, which means that Brian Flores is projected to stay with the Patriots.
Josh McDaniels: Colts
Matt Patricia: Lions