A new name has emerged in defensive coordinator interviews. Vikings defensive backs coach Daronte Jones has earned his first opportunity to interview for an NFL defensive coordinator position, meeting with the Giants last week, per Tom Pelissero of NFL Network. The two parties conducted the interview in Mobile, AL, where Jones worked as the National team’s defensive coordinator.
Though Jones has been coaching in some capacity since 2001, he’s a relatively new name to the NFL. After time coaching at several high school and college institutions, as well as a one-year stay in the CFL, Jones earned his first NFL job as an assistant defensive backs coach for the Dolphins in 2016. He became the Bengals cornerbacks coach two years later.
Following his two years in Cincinnati, Jones started his first stint in Minnesota as a defensive backs coach. He only spent one year in that role before departing for the defensive coordinator job at LSU. He had been a defensive coordinator for Franklin HS and Bowie State, but this was his first D1 coordinator gig.
After not being retained following his lone season as the Tigers defensive coordinator, Jones returned to his previous role with the Vikings. This most recent year, he was promoted to defensive pass game coordinator. Minnesota would finish 24th in passing yards allowed.
Here is a list of Jones’ reported competition to replace Don “Wink” Martindale as defensive play-caller in New York:
- Derrick Ansley, defensive coordinator (Chargers): Interview requested
- Bobby Babich, linebackers coach (Bills): Interview requested; promoted to Bills DC
- Shane Bowen, defensive coordinator (Titans): Interviewed
- Anthony Campanile, linebackers coach (Dolphins): Interview requested
- Brendan Daly, linebackers coach (Chiefs): Interviewed
- Ejiro Evero, defensive coordinator (Panthers): Interview blocked
- Daronte Jones, defensive pass game coordinator (Vikings): Interviewed
- Dennard Wilson, defensive backs coach (Ravens): To conduct second interview; hired as Titans DC