The Commanders and Seahawks saw a number of the top remaining candidates for their head coaching vacancies become available via their team’s respective losses on Sunday. Washington’s intentions remain clear, but Seattle will also speak with the names most frequently connected to its own opening.
The Seahawks are set to interview Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson tonight along with Ravens DC Mike Macdonald tomorrow, SI’s Albert Breer reports. In the former’s case, this summit will be a second interview which comes amidst expectations he is the top choice of the Commanders. The latter, meanwhile, has not yet taken part in a Seahawks meeting.
In spite of that, it was reported during the weekend that the Seahawks were interested in speaking with Macdonald. The Ravens and Lions were eliminated on Sunday, leaving their staffers free to interview with and accept offers from teams prepared to offer a head coaching position at any time. Both Johnson and Macdonald have been amongst the most sought-after candidates in this year’s cycle, and their futures could become clear in the coming days.
The Panthers were prepared to (once again) make a push to land Johnson, one of the top young offensive minds in the league. He was tapped as Carolina’s top choice, but the same is true of Washington. With the Panthers having moved on to Dave Canales, the Commanders are in pole position to land the 37-year-old.
Johnson would be a welcomed addition to any staff, but the Seahawks will have other options if he does take the Commanders gig. Macdonald, like Johnson, has only been an NFL coordinator over the past two years, but his work with Baltimore’s defense has quickly upped his head coaching stock. Prior to tomorrow’s sit-down with the Seahawks, he will meet today with the Commanders.
Of course, another name looming over the Seattle vacancy is Dan Quinn. The current Cowboys defensive coordinator has elected to turn down HC interest in the past, but a chance to succeed Pete Carroll in Seattle could await him. Quinn is among the staffers to have already conducted a second interview with the team, and Clarence Hill Jr. of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram notes Quinn could presently be considered a “slight favorite” for the job. However, Seattle is high on Macdonald, he adds.
Indeed, NBC Sports’ Peter King confirms Quinn’s history with Seattle (having previously served as the team’s DC) is unlikely to represent a deciding factor in the team’s ultimate decision. Plenty is still to be determined as the Seahawks enter the next phase of their coaching search. Both they and the Commanders will be worth watching closely as the HC cycle approaches its end.