The NFL is a business that never sleeps. There are interviews, meetings, and signings happening at all times, and this is only the beginning. Yes, the Green Bay Packers have chosen their 15th head coach in their lustrous 101 seasons. This is an incredible feat for any organization, but what is next for Mr. Matt LaFleur? It is going to be a very quick turnaround to say the least. The head coach is a (let’s call it) medium-sized piece to the puzzle. Not only does LaFleur have to get his family situated in Green Bay which means buying his sons appropriate winter gear for Green Bay, WI, but he has a very important task of picking out his staff.
A factor in picking LaFleur to be the next head coach was his desire and willingness to keep Mike Pettine as the defensive coordinator. They have already been vocal about bringing back Jerry Montgomery (Defensive Line Coach), and they expect him to stay on staff.
There will also be opportunities for the following coaches to return:
- Joe Whitt Jr – Pass game Coordinator
- Patrick Graham – Run Game Coordinator / ILB Coach
- Jason Simmons – Secondary Coach
- Scott McCurley – Defensive Assistant
That only leaves two spots left on the defensive side of the ball if they choose to fill them. Those positions would be Jay Hayes (Assistant Defensive Line Coach) and Ryan Downard (Defensive Quality Control). This side of the ball could stay pretty consistent which is what they are looking for, and this makes part of LaFleur’s job easier.
We all know Packer fans will be waiting to see what he does with the special teams coaches (Ron Zook in particular) and the strength and conditioning staff. However, I look at these as more of bonuses. These will be more fun intriguing signings. The really magnified and over analyzed part of this will be the choosing of the offensive staff.
Here is a list of last year’s staff:
- Joe Philbin – Offensive Coordinator / Interim Head Coach
- James Campen – Run game Coordinator / Offensive Line Coach
- Jim Hostler – Pass Game Coordinator
- Brian Angelichio – Tight Ends Coach
- Frank Cignetti Jr – Quarterbacks Coach
- Ben Sirmans – Running Backs Coach
- David Raih – Wide Receivers Coach
- Jeff Blasko – Assistant Offensive Line Coach
Alright let’s try to dissect which positions will have openings. The only one so far that they have publicly talked about bringing back so far is Brian Angelichio. I also believe, that LaFleur will try to retain James Campen given what he has been able to achieve in Green Bay. Two other coaches to watch for that could possibly come back are Ben Sirmans and Jeff Blasko. I think every other spot could be filled by a new member.
Matt LaFleur may not keep anyone previously on the offensive staff. Remember, he has every right to do so. Yes, I would like to see Campen stay. But, LaFleur was hired for his offensive mind. He will fill every spot with the best guys to implement his system. One advantage LaFleur does have is time. Since Green Bay moved quickly with their pick, he has close to first dibs making his phone calls offering positions and interviews.
As Packer fans, we know how important a supporting cast is to success. Even if you have one of the best at their position ever to a lead a team, it could all be for nothing if they are not given the right supporting cast. LaFleur’s supporting cast (especially on offense) is going to be a critical part to his success. These hires will be talked about for months to come, but I cannot wait for the next piece of the puzzle.