Chris Shula

2024 Offensive/Defensive Coordinator Search Tracker

After a crowded carousel previously stopped, the 49ers opened their defensive coordinator position. Here is how the NFC champions’ search looks:

Updated 2-28-24 (3:10pm CT)

Offensive Coordinators

Atlanta Falcons (Out: Dave Ragone)

Buffalo Bills (Out: Ken Dorsey)

  • Joe Brady, interim offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach (Bills): Hired
  • Thad Lewis, quarterbacks coach (Buccaneers): Interviewed

Carolina Panthers (Out: Thomas Brown)

  • Marcus Brady, senior offensive assistant (Eagles): Interview requested
  • Brad Idzik, wide receivers coach (Buccaneers): Hired

Chicago Bears (Out: Luke Getsy)

Cincinnati Bengals (Out: Brian Callahan)

  • Andy Dickerson, offensive line coach (Seahawks): To interview
  • Dan Pitcher, quarterbacks coach (Bengals): Promoted

Cleveland Browns (Out: Alex Van Pelt)

Las Vegas Raiders (Out: Mick Lombardi)

Los Angeles Chargers (Out: Kellen Moore)

New England Patriots (Out: Bill O’Brien)

New Orleans Saints (Out: Pete Carmichael)

Philadelphia Eagles (Out: Brian Johnson)

  • Jerrod Johnson, quarterbacks coach (Texans): Interviewed
  • Kliff Kingsbury, senior offensive analyst (USC): Interviewed 1/23
  • Kellen Moore, offensive coordinator (Chargers): Hired

Pittsburgh Steelers (Out: Matt Canada)

Seattle Seahawks (Out: Shane Waldron)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Out: Dave Canales)

Tennessee Titans (Out: Tim Kelly)

  • Nick Holz, passing game coordinator (Jaguars): Hired
  • Thad Lewis, quarterbacks coach (Buccaneers): Interviewed
  • Eric Studesville, associate head coach/running backs coach (Dolphins): Interview requested

Washington Commanders (Out: Eric Bieniemy)

  • Chip Kelly, former head coach (Eagles/49ers): On team’s radar
  • Kliff Kingsbury, senior offensive analyst (USC): Hired

Defensive Coordinators

Atlanta Falcons (Out: Ryan Nielsen)

Baltimore Ravens (Out: Mike Macdonald)

  • Zach Orr, inside linebackers coach (Ravens): Promoted

Buffalo Bills

  • Bobby Babich, linebackers coach (Bills): Promoted
  • Mike Caldwell, former defensive coordinator (Jaguars): Interviewed
  • Sean Desai, former defensive coordinator (Eagles): To interview

Chicago Bears (Out: Alan Williams)

  • Joe Barry, former defensive coordinator (Packers): To interview 1/27
  • Chris Harris, secondary coach (Titans): To interview
  • Eric Washington, assistant head coach/defensive line coach (Bills): Hired
  • Terrell Williams, assistant head coach/defensive line coach (Titans): To interview

Dallas Cowboys (Out: Dan Quinn)

Green Bay Packers (Out: Joe Barry)

Jacksonville Jaguars (Out: Mike Caldwell)

Los Angeles Chargers (Out: Derrick Ansley)

  • Jesse Minter, defensive coordinator (Michigan): Hired

Los Angeles Rams (Out: Raheem Morris)

Miami Dolphins (Out: Vic Fangio)

New England Patriots

  • DeMarcus Covington, defensive line coach (Patriots): Promoted
  • Michael Hodges, linebackers coach (Saints): To interview
  • Tem Lukabu, outside linebackers coach (Panthers): To interview
  • Christian Parker, defensive backs coach (Broncos): Interviewed

New York Giants (Out: Don Martindale)

Philadelphia Eagles (Out: Sean Desai)

  • Mike Caldwell, former defensive coordinator (Jaguars): Interviewed
  • Vic Fangio, former defensive coordinator (Dolphins): Hired
  • Ron Rivera, former head coach (Commanders): Interviewed 1/22

San Francisco 49ers (Out: Steve Wilks)

  • Daniel Bullocks, defensive backs coach (49ers): Interviewed 2/28
  • David Merritt, defensive backs coach (Chiefs): To interview
  • Nick Sorensen, defensive passing game specialist (49ers): Interviewed
  • Brandon Staley, former head coach (Chargers): Interviewed

Seattle Seahawks (Out: Clint Hurtt)

Tennessee Titans (Out: Shane Bowen)

  • Brandon Lynch, cornerbacks coach (Browns): Interviewed 1/30
  • Dennard Wilson, defensive backs coach (Ravens): Hired

Washington Commanders (Out: Jack Del Rio)

  • Joe Cullen, defensive line coach (Chiefs): Considered a candidate
  • Joe Whitt, defensive backs coach (Cowboys): Hired

Rams Promote Chris Shula To DC

The Rams are turning to their current coaching staff to fill the void left by former defensive coordinator Raheem Morris. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, the Rams have promoted pass rush coordinator and linebackers coach Chris Shula to defensive coordinator. The Rams have since announced the promotion.

With Morris being named as the Falcons new head coach, the Rams had a major hole on their coaching staff. Sean McVay considered a number of outside candidates for the job, including former Commanders head coach Ron Rivera. McVay also considered in-house candidates; besides Shula, defensive backs coach Aubrey Pleasant was also expected to get an interview for the position.

Ultimately, the Rams opted for Shula as their new defensive coordinator. The grandson of Hall of Fame coach Don Shula, Chris Shula has been climbing the NFL coaching ranks for close to a decade. He spent the past seven seasons with the Rams organization, working his way up from assistant LBs coach to the full-time job. He earned the added responsibility of pass game coordinator in 2022, and he took on the title of pass rush coordinator in 2023.

Shula has earned a positive reputation during his seven seasons with the Rams, and Schefter notes that the Dolphins tried to get the coach in for a coordinator interview. Ultimately, the Rams wouldn’t let the 37-year-old out of the building. According to Fox Sports’ Peter Schrager, Shula was “incredibly impressive” during his interview for the Rams job, and the decision is expected to be “celebrated” by the current staff.

The Rams are also reportedly eyeing a current staff member for another vacancy. According to Jonathan Jones of CBS Sports, the Rams interviewed assistant defensive line coach AC Carter for the full-time job. Carter has had a quick rise, as he only entered the NFL coaching ranks in 2022 when he served as the Broncos defensive quality control coach. In Los Angeles, he was credited with helping guide rookie Kobie Turner to a team-leading nine sacks this past season.

Dolphins To Interview Chris Shula For DC

The Dolphins’ search to replace Vic Fangio will move toward Sean McVay‘s staff, and it now includes a rather familiar name in South Florida.

Chris Shula, who has been with the Rams throughout McVay’s tenure, is set to interview for the Dolphins’ defensive coordinator position, NFL.com’s Tom Pelissero tweets. The grandson of legendary Dolphins coach Don Shula, Chris will meet with the team about its DC opening Thursday.

A Miami native, Chris is the son of former Dolphins assistant and ex-Bengals head coach David Shula. In addition to Don Shula’s 26-year run as Dolphins HC, the Shulas have produced another NFL HC (David) and a coordinator (Mike). Chris, 37, has moved around on McVay’s staff, specializing on the defensive side. He spent this past season as the Rams’ linebackers coach.

This marks Chris’ second opportunity to interview for a coordinator post this offseason. The Rams also have him on the radar to replace Raheem Morris, though bigger names are also being considered for that Los Angeles-based gig. McVay’s success has brought steady turnover on his staff, with a handful of staffers rising to the HC or coordinator ranks elsewhere. Shula spending all seven seasons on McVay’s staff has represented rare continuity for the NFC West team.

Shula coached the Rams’ DBs in 2022 but has spent the other six seasons in L.A. working with the team’s linebackers. During the team’s Super Bowl-winning slate and this past season, Shula coached L.A.’s LBs. The third-generation NFL coach broke into the league as a quality control staffer with the Chargers. Here is how the Dolphins’ DC search looks as of Thursday morning:

NFC West Coaching Updates: Rams, Kubiak, Cardinals

The Rams announced that they’ve finalized their coaching staff for the 2023 season earlier this month, according to Rams staff writer Stu Jackson. We covered a number of the changes from 2022 already, but below are the ones we have yet to cover.

With the departure of Thomas Brown, who will be calling plays for the Panthers in 2023, head coach Sean McVay had an opening for a new assistant head coach. We heard last month that the team added Jimmy Lake to the staff, but we didn’t have details on his role. It turns out that he will be replacing Brown as the Rams assistant head coach.

On offense, the biggest change we have yet to cover is the addition of Ron Gould as the team’s new running backs coach. After allowing Ra’Shaad Samples to depart for a college position, the Rams went and poached Gould away from San Diego State a month after Gould was named the associate head coach and running backs coach for the Aztecs. He spent the last six years coaching running backs at Stanford. Additionally, two assistants received promotions this offseason. Jake Peetz, who was an offensive assistant last year has been given the new title of pass game specialist. Kenneth Black, last year’s coaching fellow in Los Angeles, will fill Peetz’s previous role of offensive assistant.

Los Angeles made two new additions to the defensive staff. They hired Joe Coniglio to coach outside linebackers in 2023. Coniglio played a similar role for Navy last season. The other addition is Andrew Carter, who will be the new assistant defensive line coach after the departure of Skyler Jones. Carter was a defensive quality control coach for the Broncos last year.

Additionally, the Rams’ defensive staff saw a rare swap occur. Chris Shula, who served last year as the team’s pass game coordinator/defensive backs coach, will spend 2023 as the inside linebackers coach/pass rush coordinator. Last year’s inside linebackers coach, Chris Beake, will now coach defensive backs.

Here are some other staff changes in the NFC West:

  • We heard last month that the 49ers added Klint Kubiak to their staff in an unnamed role. The team recently announced that Kubiak will serve as San Francisco’s offensive passing game specialist in 2023. The 49ers also announced the hires of Jacob Webster as defensive quality control coach and Max Molz as coaching operations assistant. Both are making their NFL-debuts with Webster coming from Wisconsin as a graduate assistant and Molz serving as the associate director of football operations at Missouri last year.
  • The Cardinals hired some personnel help for new general manager Monti Ossenfort earlier this week, according to Aaron Wilson of KPRC 2. Arizona is bringing in Rob Kisiel to a pro personnel department executive position. Kisiel has been a pro scout for the Falcons for the last two seasons and previously served as director of pro personnel for the Texans.

Eagles Conducted DC Interviews With Chris Shula, Jesse Minter

The Eagles continue to evaluate both the NFL and NCAA landscapes in their search for a new defensive coordinator. A pair of candidates are the latest names to be connected to the opening.

Philadelphia has interviewed Rams defensive backs coach Chris Shula along with Michigan DC Jesse Minter, per Mike Garafolo of NFL Network (on Twitter). Neither coach had drawn interest for an opening elsewhere so far in the 2023 hiring cycle, but they have added to the growing lost of staffers the Eagles are considering as they try to find Jonathan Gannon‘s replacement.

Shula, 37, is the grandson of Hall of Famer Don Shula and son of former Bengals head coach Dave Shula. He began his NFL coaching career with the Chargers in 2015, spending two years there. He moved on to the Rams in 2017, becoming a member of Sean McVay‘s first Los Angeles staff after playing under him in college. Shula worked with the team’s linebackers for his first five seasons, but in 2022 was given the new title of DBs coach along with passing game coordinator.

Minter, meanwhile, has primarily worked in the college ranks throughout his coaching career. The 39-year-old’s first and only NFL gig to date came in Baltimore beginning in 2017. He was hired as a defensive assistant that year, and later spent time as assistant, then full-time defensive backs coach of the Ravens. In 2021, he returned to NCAA sidelines with Vanderbilt, leading him to the Wolverines this past season. Michigan’s defense played a key role in their second straight Big Ten championship and CFP appearance this season. That has understandably put Minter back on the NFL radar.

The Eagles not only lost Gannon as coordinator after two seasons, but they face the possibility of losing a number of defensives starters in free agency this offseason. That includes several members of their secondary, though keeping C.J. Gardner-Johnson is expected to be a priority. Targeting staffers with experience as defensive backs coaches would make sense in their attempt to re-tool that unit heading into 2023.

Here is an updated breakdown of the Eagles’ search:

  • Sean Desai, defensive assistant (Seahawks): Interview requested
  • Vance Joseph, defensive coordinator (Cardinals): Team interested
  • Jim Leonhard, defensive coordinator (Wisconsin): Interviewed
  • Jesse Minter, defensive coordinator (Michigan): Interviewed
  • Chris Shula, defensive backs coach (Rams): Interviewed
  • Dennard Wilson, defensive backs coach (Eagles): Mentioned as candidate

NFL Coaching Notes: Rams Complete Staff, Colts Hire QC

The Rams put the finishing touches on their 2022 coaching staff, announcing the completion earlier this month. Along with many other promotions and hires that we’ve already reported on this site, the following staff changes were unveiled:

  • Thad Bogardus, who served last season as the assistant linebackers coach, was promoted to outside linebackers coach. He previously spent the 2020 season as assistant defensive line coach, a promotion after serving previously as assistant defensive line/defensive quality control coach.
  • Lance Schulters, who spent last season as a coaching fellow, earned a promotion to defensive assistant for the upcoming season. Schulters is a former NFL safety with 19 career interceptions to his name. He started his coaching career as a defensive assistant for the Falcons in 2020.
  • Chris Shula, who oversaw linebackers last year, will now serve as pass game coordinator/defensive backs coach for Los Angeles. Shula has worked with the Rams’ linebackers in some capacity since 2017, debuting in the NFL as a defensive quality control coach in San Diego after bouncing around a few college jobs.
  • Chris Beake was hired as the Rams’ new inside linebackers coach after nine seasons in Denver. After holding a variety of roles on the Broncos staff, he spent his final season there as the defensive pass game specialist.
  • Kenneth Black was brought on as a coaching fellow for the Rams this season. Black spent the last two years as co-offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach for Florida A&M.
  • Skyler Jones was hired as assistant defensive line coach. Jones spent seven seasons coaching at the college level, most recently in the role of defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator at Norfolk State.
  • Jeremy Springer was brought on in the role of special teams assistant. Springer has been a special teams coordinator at the college football level for the last four years, spending last year at Marshall and the previous three seasons with Arizona.

The Colts also announced a hire at the end of the month from the college level:

NFC Notes: Oher, Peppers, Redskins, Rams

Ron Rivera said earlier this month he expects Michael Oher to be back with the Panthers next season, but the recently re-signed left tackle has not yet been completely cleared from the concussion that sidelined him for most of the 2016 season, Jonathan Jones of the Charlotte Oberserver reports. Oher missed 13 games last season and has dealt with concussion trouble for more than four months.

Rivera did not know when Oher suffered the concussion, but Jones reports the setback likely occurred before the Panthers’ Week 3 Vikings tilt — the most recent game in which Oher played. GM Dave Gettleman said recently he had not spoken to Oher in a bit and was going to give him some time. The Panthers’ left tackle signed a three-year extension last summer, but Gettleman said he plans to investigate the position this offseason. Mike Remmers is a free agent as well, and Carolina doesn’t have any much depth here, so an Oher return is crucial. He will turn 31 in May.

Here’s more from the NFC.

  • A Julius Peppers-Panthers reunion makes sense for the 37-year-old North Carolinian as his career winds down, Scott Fowler of the Charlotte Observer writes. The outside linebacker who played as a 4-3 end in Carolina is a UFA. He spent four seasons with the Bears and three with the Packers, initially going to Chicago after the Panthers offered to make him the league’s highest-paid defender in 2010. The Panthers have ends Mario Addison and Charles Johnson looming as UFAs.
  • The Redskins‘ promotion of Aubrey Pleasant from assistant secondary coach to secondary coach has yet to be completed, Ryan O’Halloran of the Florida Times-Union notes. Washington’s talks with Pleasant are “at a standstill” after the team offered him the position, in a somewhat strange status for a defensive backs job. The Redskins still want to make Pleaseant its DBs boss after firing Perry Fewell. However, the Rams remain interested in Pleasant as well. Los Angeles already hired Samson Brown from the Broncos, but the former assistant secondary coach under Wade Phillips in Denver doesn’t appear to have a definitive role yet.
  • Regarding the top of the Redskins’ defensive hierarchy, one reason Joe Barry may have been ousted was due to some in the organization preferring he operate a more aggressive defense, John Keim of ESPN.com writes. However, a source told Keim he doesn’t consider new Washington DC Greg Manusky to be particularly aggressive. The newly promoted assistant promised to use an attacking style, though. Manusky’s Colts defenses did average more blitzes per season than Barry’s two in Washington did, Keim notes.
  • Should Pleasant join the Rams, he would be working with Don Shula’s grandson. The Rams plan to hire Chris Shula to work on Phillips’ defensive staff in Los Angeles, Alex Marvez of the Sporting News tweets. Chris Shula worked as a Chargers quality control coach the past two seasons. Prior to that, he served as a college defensive assistant. Shula played college football with Sean McVay.