After blocking several requests to interview coaches from Arthur Smith’s staff, it seems the Falcons will be allowing them to interview.
That changed earlier in the week when the Patriots requested to interview Williams for Jerod Mayo’s new staff in New England. The requests continued last night as Bruce Feldman reported that the Jaguars are expected to interview Nielsen for their vacant defensive coordinator position.
SOURCE: Falcons defensive coordinator Ryan Nielsen is expected to interview for the Jaguars DC job. Nielsen made a big impact in his 1st season, improving the Falcons from 26th to 7th in YPP allowed; from 31st in the NFL to 3rd in 3rd down D; and from 25th to 8th in pass defense.
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) January 17, 2024
It seems as interviews have progressed to fill the Falcons head coach position, that Arthur Blank, Rich McKay and Terry Fontenot have gotten the sense that regardless of who the new head coach is he’ll want to fill out his own staff and not inherit one.
Though Ryan Nielsen was an intergral piece of the defensive turnaround in Atlanta, the new head coach will want his own people in the building. The Falcons have a good one in Nielsen, but make no mistake about it, what he did can be replicated and even improved upon.
I am of the opinion that talent matters more than scheme on the defensive side of the ball, while scheme is more important than talent on the offensive side of the ball. It’s not black and white, but for the most part, if the Falcons continue to bolster that side of the ball, it won’t matter who the defensive coordinator is.
Nielsen will be a great hire for the Jaguars and Doug Pederson.
Photographer: Ken Murray/Icon Sportswire