Who Is The Front Runner For Atlanta Falcons Head Coach Job?
By: Kenneth Harrison
TheSouthernSportsEdition.com news services
The Atlanta Falcons are still searching for a head coach to replace Arthur Smith.
It looks like Bill Belichick is the front runner for the position. He is the only candidate so far that has had two interviews with them.
I’m not sure if Atlanta has any other clear plans because they have had so many interviews with other candidates.
The Falcons have interviewed Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh and he is scheduled for a second interview. I think this is the best available coach but he is the front-runner for the Chargers opening. That job is more attractive because they already have a franchise quarterback.
The Falcons have completed interviews with the following coaches: Ravens defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald, Bengals offensive coordinator Brian Callahan, 49ers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks, Panthers defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero, Ravens assistant head coach/defensive line coach Anthony Weaver, former Patriots coach Bill Belichick (first and second interviews), Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, Eagles offensive coordinator Brian Johnson, Lions defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn, Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris, Bills interim offensive coordinator/quarterbacks Joe Brady, Texans offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik and Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson.
On paper Belichick seems like a great fit for the job. He won six Super Bowls with New England and two more as the defensive coordinator of the New York Giants. As we know, Tom Brady was his quarterback for the Patriots during that time.
After Brady left New England in 2020, New England had a losing record in 3 of those 4 seasons without him. This past season they were 4-13. They drafted quarterback Mac Jones in the first round of the 2021 draft and they have not been able to help him develop.
This should be looked at because Atlanta might draft a QB in the first round.
It has also been reported that Falcons owner Arthur Blank wants to hire Belichick but
“The Atlanta thing, there’s a lot of buzz going around right now about the Atlanta job, that the executives are there are trying — and I’ve heard this, I’m telling you from so many different people — basically Arthur Blank wants to hire Bill Belichick, and all the front office people in Atlanta don’t want to hire Belichick because it’s like any big company — sport franchises are like microcosms of all big companies,” Bill Simmons said on his podcast.
“You bring in Belichick — you think Belichick’s going to listen to like [John] McKay’s kid … or [general manager Terry] Fontenot. He’s going to be like, ‘I’m going to do my own thing.’ “
I think the best remaining candidates are Slowik and Ben Johnson.
Slowik, 36, is credited with getting rookie quarterback C.J. Stroud ready to play in the NFL this season. Stroud, who was taken with the second overall pick in the draft, helped lead the Texans to the AFC South title. After blowing out the Browns in the wild card round, the Texans lost 34-10 to the Ravens on Saturday.
Johnson, 37, was a walk-on quarterback at North Carolina. He’s been Detroit’s offensive coordinator for the past two seasons. The Lions were ranked third in total offense at 394.8 yards per game, second in passing (258.9) and fifth in rushing (135.9 per game) and fifth in points scored (27.1).