Jim Schwartz

Giants Interview Jim Schwartz For DC

Four former defensive coordinators have now interviewed with the Giants. Jim Schwartz was the latest to do so, going through a virtual meeting with the team Saturday, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets.

A Titans assistant, Schwartz has extensive experience as a defensive coordinator. He gained plenty of intel on recent Giants teams from his five-year post as Eagles DC. The Eagles hiring a new head coach last year ended up sending Schwartz back to Tennessee, where he aided Mike Vrabel‘s staff from a non-DC position this season.

The Giants have now met with Schwartz, ex-Ravens DC Don Martindale, multi-stint DC Teryl Austin and 2021 Bears defensive play-caller Sean Desai. After being prepared to keep Patrick Graham on for a third season, Brian Daboll appears to prefer Graham’s replacement have coordinator experience. Graham agreed to become the Raiders’ DC on Friday night.

Schwartz, 55, is best known for his time with the Lions. Inheriting a team coming off an 0-16 season, Schwartz guided Detroit to a 10-6 slate in 2011. After the Lions fired Schwartz following the 2013 season, he resurfaced as the Bills’ DC before moving to Philly and collecting a Super Bowl ring. The Colts interviewed Schwartz recently but ended up hiring Gus Bradley as their defensive leader.

Colts To Interview Jim Schwartz For DC

With Matt Eberflus departing Indianapolis to become head coach of the Bears, the Colts are in need of a new defensive coordinator. After interviewing Jaguars DC Joe Cullen and WFT defensive backs coach Chris Harris this weekend, the club plans to speak with Titans senior defensive assistant Jim Schwartz for the job.

It was Schwartz’s work as Tennessee’s DC from 2001-08 that landed him the Lions’ head coaching job in 2009, and he remained in Detroit for five seasons, compiling a 29-51 record during that time (though he did secure a rare playoff appearance for the team in 2011). He enjoyed a successful season as the Bills’ defensive coordinator in 2014, but then-HC Doug Marrone resigned following that campaign, and new HC Rex Ryan brought in his own staff.

Schwartz, now 55, served as the Eagles’ DC from 2016-2020, a run that included a championship ring. His Super Bowl-winning defense ranked fourth in the league, and his unit was ranked in the top-10 against the run from 2017-19. After his contract with Philadelphia expired at the end of the 2020 season, he initially planned to sit out 2021, though the Titans convinced him to come back in something of an advisory role. After finishing as a bottom-five defense in terms of yards allowed in 2020, Tennessee was ranked 12th in the league in that regard in 2021.

Colts HC Frank Reich arrived in Philadelphia with Schwartz in 2016 and spent the 2016-17 seasons as the team’s offensive coordinator, so there is an obvious familiarity there. And Schwartz has a long track record of success, so while this is the first reported interest in him in this year’s coaching cycle, Reich could do much worse in his quest to replace Eberflus.

In related news, Reich may be losing his safeties coach, Alan Williams. We heard on Friday that Williams is a candidate to become Eberflus’ defensive coordinator in Chicago, and Tom Pelissero of the NFL Network tweeted this morning that Eberflus is indeed targeting Williams.

Titans To Hire Jim Schwartz

Jim Schwartz said in January he planned to take the 2021 season off, but the five-year Eagles defensive coordinator appears to have backtracked on that pledge.

The former Titans DC plans to return to Tennessee, according to Brent Dougherty of 104.5 The Zone and TitanInsider.com’s Terry McCormick (Twitter links). Schwartz has an extensive history with the Titans, having worked in multiple positions with the franchise since it rebranded under the Titans moniker in 1999.

Schwartz’s initial Titans gig launched him onto the head coaching radar. He worked as Tennessee’s DC from 2001-08 and was with the franchise for 10 years prior to accepting the Lions’ HC job in 2009. Schwartz was a Titans defensive assistant on their 1999 Super Bowl staff and served as the team’s linebackers coach in 2000. That defense ranked first overall, leading to Schwartz’s promotion to DC in ’01.

Following Dean Pees‘ latest retirement, the Titans went without a true defensive coordinator last year. The results were not good. Tennessee ranked as one of the worst third-down defenses in modern NFL history and ranked 28th in total defense. The Titans, who offered Pees a role on their 2021 staff, promoted 2020 defensive play-caller Shane Bowen to DC. It looks like he will have some notable help next season.

As Jim Wyatt of the team’s official website writes, Schwartz will serve as a resource to Bowen and the rest of the team’s defensive staff. Head coach Mike Vrabel said, “We are excited to add Jim to our staff. He has a deep level of football knowledge and has overseen a great deal of success on the defensive side of the ball, so it is always good to add a quality coach to our staff. This role will provide our defensive staff with Jim’s experience and perspective in the staff meetings and on the practice field.”

The Eagles’ 2017 Super Bowl-winning defense ranked fourth under Schwartz, and the Fletcher Cox-anchored unit ranked in the top 10 against the run from 2017-19. Just about everything fell off track in Philly last year, but Schwartz has a history of coaxing production. The 54-year-old assistant has popped up occasionally on the HC carousel but has been a defensive play-caller since the Lions fired him in 2014.

Eagles DC Jim Schwartz Sitting Out 2021 Season

Jim Schwartz is stepping away from football, at least temporarily. Tom Pelissero of NFL.com reports that the Eagles defensive coordinator will let his contract expire at the end of the season and will “take a year off from coaching.”

According to Pelissero, the Eagles had approached the 54-year-old about an extension. However, after undergoing hip and eye surgeries, Schwartz believed this was a good time to take a break. While the report notes that Schwartz “will contemplate retirement,” it also sounds like he’s keeping his options open for future opportunities.

Schwartz got his first NFL opportunity in 1993 when he served as a scout on Bill Belichick‘s staff in Cleveland. Following a stint with the Ravens, Schwartz ended up catching on in Tennessee. After starting as a defensive assistant, he made his way up to linebackers coach and eventually defensive coordinator, a role he held for eight seasons.

Schwartz got a crack at head coaching in 2009 when he was hired by the Lions. He finished with an ugly 29-51 record during his five seasons in Detroit, although he did make the postseason with third-year quarterback Matthew Stafford in 2011. He was fired by the Lions following the 2013 campaign, and he was subsequently signed as the defensive coordinator in Buffalo. The Bills had a top-five defense during that 2014 season, but he wasn’t retained when Rex Ryan took over as head coach following the campaign.

Schwartz was hired as Philly’s defensive coordinator in 2016. The veteran coach played a major role in turning around a porous defense, and he earned a Super Bowl ring after guiding the defense in 2017.

Latest On Browns’ Coaching Search

Part 1 of the final leg of Browns interviews took place Wednesday, with Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz sitting down with team brass. Despite being a late entry into this process, Schwartz continues to gain steam.

The former Lions head coach is a legitimate candidate to land this job, per Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Browns chief strategy officer Paul DePodesta, who is running this search, already has a good relationship with Schwartz, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport (video link).

Kevin Stefanski is up next, with that interview set to take place Thursday in Minneapolis. Stefanski impressed during two interviews for this job last year, but Rapoport notes that while John Dorsey ran the search that ended with Freddie Kitchens, owner Jimmy Haslam also nixed a potential Stefanski-Browns union. While DePodesta now has greater say in how the Browns proceed here, Haslam certainly still will make the call.

Josh McDaniels‘ interview remains on for Friday. The longtime Patriots OC has interviewed with his hometown team twice before. Although McDaniels withdrew his name from consideration for the Browns job in 2014 and backed out of a Colts agreement four years later, Rapoport adds that the 43-year-old assistant “definitely wants” this job. However, he may no longer be the favorite.

The Browns have interviewed several others in this search, which is slated to be an eight-interview process. But at this point it would be a bit of a surprise if one of these final three did not end up with the job. The team is aiming to have a coach by Saturday. Here is where the Browns’ process stands as of Wednesday night, courtesy of PFR’s Head Coaching Search Tracker:

Eagles Notes: Schwartz, WRs, Groh, Staff

In a rookie receiver class that included big seasons from A.J. Brown, D.K. Metcalf, Terry McLaurin and others, the Eagles did not get much from second-round pick J.J. Arcega-Whiteside. The Stanford prospect caught 10 passes for 169 yards, even as the team losing each of its starters created consistent opportunities. The Eagles bypassed Metcalf for Arcega-Whiteside, but Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer notes the team placed a higher grade on the eventual Seahawks starter. But Metcalf having failed an Eagles physical meant the team did not want to use a second-round pick on him, McLane adds. Metcalf amassed 900 regular-season receiving yards and posted 160 in Seattle’s win over Philadelphia in Round 1. Regardless, the Eagles will likely be linked to first-round wideouts this year. The Eagles are “all over” this year’s wideout and cornerback classes, per Matt Miller of Bleacher Report.

Here is the latest from Philadelphia:

  • The Eagles restructured Alshon Jeffery‘s deal to create 2019 cap space, guaranteeing the veteran receiver’s $9.9MM 2020 salary. It would cost the Eagles more than $26MM to release the soon-to-be 30-year-old target, but McLane notes offset language is included in Jeffery’s deal. It is unclear, however, how much the Eagles would save if another team signed Jeffery after a release. Howie Roseman has done well in recent years to create roster-improvement avenues for the Eagles. But with Jeffery and 33-year-old DeSean Jackson‘s money nearly fully guaranteed, the veteran GM may need to get creative to improve Philly’s wideout situation.
  • Roseman appeared to hint at the Eagles’ window closing with their current nucleus, and McLane expects the team to cut ties with some regulars to infuse the roster with younger talent (Twitter link). Roseman projects the Eagles to hold 10 draft picks in April, meaning three compensatory selections, and held off dealing two first-round picks for Jalen Ramsey because of Carson Wentz‘s contract requiring more rookie-deal salaries on the roster (Twitter links via NFL.com’s Mike Garafolo and SI.com’s Albert Breer). Roseman has been aggressive on acquiring veterans for draft picks in recent years; the Eagles may change up that strategy in 2020. They currently have 11 starters under contract who are over 30 or will be by year’s end.
  • Jim Schwartz interviewed for the Browns’ HC job on Wednesday, but the Eagles would like him to stay. Doug Pederson would like him to return for a fifth season as Philly’s DC, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets.
  • Pederson was clear on the statuses of offensive coordinator Mike Groh and wideouts coach Carson Walch, indicating (via ESPN.com’s Tim McManus, on Twitter) both will be back next season. Pederson, however, added all of the Eagles’ staffers remain under evaluation. Despite Schwartz’s interview with Cleveland and Pederson’s declarative statement on Groh and Wach, McLane sees the DC as being more likely to be back than the offensive staffers (Twitter link). It was obviously a rough year for Eagles wide receivers. And Groh’s offense — likely as a result of the frequent starter unavailability — ranked 14th in DVOA in his second season at the helm.

Latest On Browns’ HC Search

The Browns are no longer competing with any team for coaching candidates, with the Panthers and Giants having made their choices. However, neither hired a coach the Browns were considering. Both were linked to Josh McDaniels, who remains set to interview with the Browns on Friday.

But with Jim Schwartz entering the derby and Kevin Stefanski remaining a Browns target, McDaniels’ status as frontrunner may be slipping. The Patriots offensive coordinator may not have the edge Schwartz or Stefanski, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com notes (video link).

Stefanski wowed Browns brass in his 2019 interview, Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer adds. But then-GM John Dorsey promoted Freddie Kitchens instead. With Browns chief strategy officer Paul DePodesta running this year’s search, the team appears to be seeking analytically geared coaches. Schwartz and Stefanski profile as embracing analytics, per Rapoport.

McDaniels, however, still has support in the Browns building, Cabot notes, adding that DePodesta and ex-Browns exec Andrew Berry (now with the Eagles) would be interested in a reunion. However, Cabot points to said reunion being most likely to commence with Stefanski as the head coach.

McDaniels’ interview will occur Friday — two days after Schwartz’s and one day after Stefanski’s. A northeast Ohio native, the 43-year-old McDaniels has interviewed with the Browns twice before. He met with the Browns during previous owner Randy Lerner‘s tenure in 2009, but the team hired Eric Mangini. McDaniels withdrew his name from consideration after interviewing in 2014, when current owner Jimmy Haslam was in charge. The Browns conducted a lengthy search in 2014; McDaniels was once believed to be the favorite during that process as well. The Browns want to make their hire by Saturday, so second interviews do not appear to be on tap.

Here is where the Browns’ process stands as of Tuesday night, courtesy of PFR’s Head Coaching Search Tracker:

Latest On Browns’ Coaching Search

The game of head coaching musical chairs has left the Browns without a seat (er, head coach). After the Redskins, Cowboys, Panthers, and Giants got their men, the Browns are forging ahead with their own search. 

The Browns plan to interview Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz on Wednesday, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com (on Twitter) hears. After that, they’ll chat with Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski on Thursday and Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels on Friday, according to ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter (Twitter link).

Schwartz, who once served as the Lions’ head coach, has been the Eagles’ DC since 2016. His first NFL job came with the (original) Browns, where he served as a scout from 1993-95.

The Browns don’t necessarily have to rush to make a hire now that the league’s four other openings have been addressed. Still, Schefter hears that they want to make their choice by Saturday.

Ron RiveraMike McCarthyMatt Rhule, and Joe Judge are all off the table, but the Browns still have plenty of candidates in consideration. Here’s the rundown, courtesy of PFR’s Head Coaching Search Tracker:

Browns To Interview Jim Schwartz

Add another name to the Browns’ interview-request list. The team is seeking permission to meet with Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. An interview is expected to occur this week, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets.

The former Lions head coach has been the Eagles’ DC since 2016. Schwartz’s first NFL job, however, came with the Browns. Prior to the original Browns morphing into the Ravens, Schwartz worked as a scout from 1993-95.

Schwartz, 53, was involved in the 2018 interview cycle but not much in last year’s. The Giants interviewed Schwartz in 2018. In 2016, the Browns were interested in bringing Schwartz to Cleveland as their defensive coordinator under Hue Jackson. Schwartz ultimately wound up in Philadelphia, where he oversaw the Eagles’ 2017 Super Bowl champion defense.

Under Schwartz, the Eagles finished 12th in defensive DVOA. They ranked fourth, fifth and 15th from 2016-18, with the championship group ranking in the top 10 in both run- and pass-defense DVOA. This year’s Eagles were fourth in run-defense DVOA, a staple of their recent defenses under Schwartz.

Following Schwartz’s five-year tenure in Detroit, he spent the 2014 season as Buffalo’s DC under Doug Marrone. Schwartz inherited one of the worst situations in modern coaching history, taking over a Lions team that had gone 0-16 in 2008, and elevated the team to the playoffs in 2011. Overall, Schwartz went just 29-51 as Lions HC. He joins a lengthy list of candidates connected to the Browns. Josh McDaniels is believed to be the favorite and will interview this week.

East Notes: Bell, Schwartz, Garrett,

Jets running back Le’Veon Bell was part of one of the team’s most active offseason is in recent history. However, Bell may be putting on a new uniform as soon as next season, according to Rich Cimini of ESPN. Bell is in the midst of the worst statistical season of his career. Cimini details the various hurdles that will limit New York’s flexibility in finding a new option.

Bell’s guarantees will make it unpalatable for the Jets to simply release Bell and so Cimini suggests a trade following the Jadeveon Clowney model that allows the Jets to incur a smaller cap hit, while recouping some compensation for the 27-year old running back.

Here’s some more from around the NFC East:

  • Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz may have the most power of any coordinator in the league, according to Jeff McLane of The Philadelphia Inquirer. Schwartz has led one of the strongest defensive units in football over his tenure, but has insisted on maintaining a low profile. But, given the strength of the team’s success, the former Lions head coach may be in line for another opportunity at the helm of a franchise this offseason.
  • Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett held a meeting with the team’s players on Thursday where he took responsibility for some of the team’s recent shortcomings, according to Jane Slater of the NFL Network. Garrett has been on the hot seat for much of the season, although owner Jerry Jones has publicly remained confident in him, but has Dallas in the driver’s seat in the NFC East. According to Slater, the meeting was received well by the players and may be at least partially responsible for the team’s strong performance in their 35-27 victory in Detroit against the Lions.