Marquand Manuel

2023 Offensive/Defensive Coordinator Search Tracker

As the head coaching carousel spins, many of the league’s offensive and defensive coordinator positions are open as well. Teams seeking new head coaches will soon begin OC and DC searches — some have already started those processes — but a handful of other teams that did not make HC changes are also searching for top assistants.

This is a big year for offensive coordinator hires, with nearly half the league conducting searches or likely being set to do so. Here are the teams searching for new OCs and DCs. As new searches emerge, they will be added to the list.

Updated 2-8-23 (3:34pm CT)

Offensive Coordinators

Baltimore Ravens (Out: Greg Roman)

Carolina Panthers (Out: Ben McAdoo)

Dallas Cowboys (Out: Kellen Moore)

  • Brian Angelichio, tight ends coach (Vikings): Interviewed 2/2
  • Thomas Brown, tight ends coach (Rams): Interviewed
  • Jeff Nixon, running backs coach (Panthers): Interviewed
  • Brian Schottenheimer, offensive consultant (Cowboys): Hired

Denver Broncos (Out: Justin Outten)

Houston Texans (Out: Pep Hamilton)

Los Angeles Chargers (Out: Joe Lombardi)

Los Angeles Rams (Out: Liam Coen)

New York Jets (Out: Mike LaFleur)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (Out: Byron Leftwich)

Tennessee Titans (Out: Todd Downing)

Washington Commanders (Out: Scott Turner)

Defensive Coordinators

Atlanta Falcons (Out: Dean Pees)

Carolina Panthers (Out: Al Holcomb)

  1. Ejiro Evero, former defensive coordinator (Broncos): Hired
  2. Vic Fangio, former head coach (Broncos): Interviewed
  3. Marquand Manuel, safeties coach (Jets): Interviewed
  4. Kris Richard, co-defensive coordinator (Saints): Interviewed

Denver Broncos

Houston Texans 

Miami Dolphins (Out: Josh Boyer)

Minnesota Vikings (Out: Ed Donatell)

New Orleans Saints (Out: Ryan Nielsen, Kris Richard)

  • Joe Woods, former defensive coordinator (Browns): Hired

San Francisco 49ers (Out: DeMeco Ryans)

  • Vic Fangio, former head coach (Broncos): On radar
  • Chris Harris, defensive backs coach (Commanders): Interviewed 1/31
  • Kris Kocurek, defensive line coach (49ers): On radar
  • Steve Wilks, former interim head coach (Panthers): Hired

Texans Request Chris Harris, Marquand Manuel DC Interviews

FEBRUARY 7: Houston has also put in a request to interview Manuel, reports Aaron Wilson of KPRC2. That comes as little surprise, given the Texans’ previously noted interest in him following Ryans’ HC hire. Manuel, 43, spent two years as a defensive coordinator in Atlanta, and has since worked with the Eagles’ and Jets’ defensive backs.

Wilson also notes that Kocurek is no longer on the Texans’ radar not due to a lack of interest, but rather the overwhelming belief that he will remain in San Francisco. He, along with Undlin, represent logical internal replacement candidates for Ryans with the 49ers. Undlin had been reported to be “in the mix” for that position by SI’s Albert Breer, but Wilson tweets that the 51-year-old’s contract with San Francisco has expired. As a result, he is free to explore opportunities below the coordinator level, including in Houston and elsewhere.

FEBRUARY 6: The Texans are looking to fill out their staff under new head coach DeMeco Ryans, reportedly requesting to interview former Commanders defensive backs coach Chris Harris for the defensive coordinator job in Houston, according to Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated. Harris had reportedly been the Titans’ planned hire as defensive pass game coordinator and cornerbacks coach, but no official statement was ever made.

It seemed that Harris was off the market due to the Titans’ plans, but a little over a week later, the 49ers reportedly had interest in interviewing Harris for their defensive coordinator position. After that, it began to seem that Harris would allow his greater options to play out before committing to Tennessee. Harris did interview with San Francisco, and the 49ers’ coordinator hiring process is still ongoing, plus now Harris has been connected to Houston’s search.

Harris isn’t the only name that’s been mentioned in Houston so far. A little over a week ago, the first few names of interest were reported. Jets safeties coach Marquand Manuel, 49ers passing game specialist/secondary coach Cory Undlin, and 49ers defensive line coach Kris Kocurek were all mentioned as candidates of interest in Houston. Manuel is the only one of the four who has experience as a defensive coordinator, but with Ryans leading the team, it appears prior experience is not a requirement.

The intriguing scenario around Harris has been prolonged, as he is still receiving significant interest for open defensive coordinator jobs. In Houston he’ll be forced to compete with two of Ryan’s former San Francisco underlings in Undlin and Kocurek, but Harris has certainly been a hot name in coaching circles. His ascent up the coaching ladder is sure to continue next year whether he accepts the offer in Tennessee, replaces Ryans in San Francisco, or joins him in Houston.

Latest On Texans’ Coordinator Searches

The Texans have secured their new head coach, as the organization agreed to a six-year contract with DeMeco Ryans earlier today. Now, the organization is shifting the focus to coordinators, and the Texans have already starting compiling a list of candidates for both roles.

[RELATED: Texans Hire DeMeco Ryans As HC]

It sounds like Ryans will presumably bring in his own staff, meaning incumbent offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton will likely be on the outside looking in. The Texans have already started reaching out to potential candidates, with NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reporting (via Twitter) that the organization has requested an interview with 49ers passing game coordinator Bobby Slowik for the OC job. Meanwhile, Jonathan Jones of CBS Sports reports (on Twitter) that the Texans have also requested permission to interview Bengals wide receivers coach Troy Walters for the gig.

Slowik would be a natural fit if Ryans is hoping to implement some of San Francisco’s offensive philosophies. Slowik has been with the 49ers since 2017 and actually started on the defensive side of the ball. He moved to offense in 2019, became an offensive pass game specialist in 2021, and earned the promotion to offensive passing game coordinator in 2022. The 49ers, of course, dealt with a number of injuries at quarterback this past season, but the team still got 29 passing touchdowns (vs. only eight interceptions) from Jimmy Garoppolo and rookie Brock Purdy.

It’s not a huge surprise that Walters is getting a look for an offensive coordinator job. While the Bengals organization has invested plenty of resources into the receiver position, Walters has still gotten the most out of the trio of Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins, and Tyler Boyd. The 46-year-old coach doesn’t have much of an NFL coaching resume, but he previously served as offensive coordinator at UCF and Nebraska.

The 49ers didn’t have a defensive coordinator in 2022, with head coach Lovie Smith mostly being responsible for defensive play-calling. With Smith now out of the picture, it sounds like Ryans will be looking for someone to help guide the defense. According to Aaron Wilson of Click2Houston.com (via Twitter), the Texans have interest in Jets safeties coach Marquand Manuel for the defensive coordinator job.

Following an eight-year playing career, Manuel joined the coaching ranks as an assistant special teams coach with the Seahawks in 2012. He worked his way up to become the Falcons’ defensive coordinator from 2017-18, but following a top-10 performance during his first year, Atlanta finished in the bottom five in 2018, leading to his ouster. After a one-year stint as a DBs coach with the Eagles in 2020, Manuel joined Robert Saleh‘s first Jets staff in 2021 and has served as Gang Green’s safeties coach over the past two seasons. The Jets allowed the fourth-fewest yards per game and the third-fewest passing yards per game in 2022, leading to him also garnering an interview for the Panthers’ defensive coordinator job.

The Texans also have interest in 49ers passing game specialist-secondary coach Cory Undlin for the defensive coordinator job, according to Wilson (on Twitter). Besides having worked extensively with Ryans over the past two years, Undlin has experience as a defensive coordinator, having served in the role with the Lions in 2020. Of course, that stint ended with his firing, but Undlin has seemingly rehabilitated his image following two successful seasons in San Francisco. The long-time coach won Super Bowl rings with the Patriots and Eagles, and he’s also head coaching stints with the Browns, Jaguars, and Broncos.

Undlin isn’t the only 49ers defensive coach that Ryans is considering. According to Wilson, the Texnas also have interest in 49ers defensive line coach Kris Kocurek. However, 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan is “expected to work to keep his staff intact” following Ryans’ move to Houston. Matt Barrows of The Athletic tweets that Ryans could also recruit 49ers defensive quality control coaches Stephen Adegoke and Andrew Hayes-Stoker to Houston (but presumably not for the DC job).

Latest On Panthers’ DC Search

Today marks the first official day at work for new Panthers head coach Frank Reich, the first domino to fall in the 2023 HC cycle. Much remains to be seen with respect to his staff, including coordinators on both sides of the ball.

On defense, it became clear that Reich’s preference for his new DC was Vic Fangio. The 64-year-old agreed to terms yesterday on a deal with the Dolphins which will see him become the league’s highest-paid coordinator, however, leaving Carolina to look elsewhere to fill the position. A pair of finalists remain in the running.

Those two are Saints co-defensive coordinator Kris Richard and Jets safeties coach Marquand Manuel. Those two are the only candidates other than Fangio to have interviewed for the position, so it comes as little surprise that they remain in the running. Joe Person of The Athletic notes that Carolina has “moved on” to Richard and Manuel as it pertains to the DC opening, with the latter seeming to be in the lead (subscription required).

Josina Anderson of CBS Sports also reports (via Twitter) that Manuel remains the subject of considerable interest from Carolina. The 43-year-old has two years of DC experience, dating back to his time with the Falcons in 2017 and 2018. That post came between tenures in Seattle and Philadelphia prior to his current one in New York. Neither he nor Richard, who has multiple stints as a defensive coordinator on his resume, have experience working with Reich, though they have ties to general manager Scott Fitterer dating back to their shared time with the Seahawks.

Anderson adds that the Panthers could have competition in the form of the Texans for Manuel’s services. Houston is thought to be a potential destination for him in the (expected) event that 49ers DC DeMeco Ryans is hired as the team’s new head coach. Especially if that were to happen, attention could shift once more towards a staffer who does have experience working alongside Reich.

Person names Colts DC Gus Bradley as someone who has been “mentioned” as a candidate to follow Reich to Carolina. As he notes, however, an interview request as not yet been submitted. Anderson tweets that Reich brought up the possibility of hiring the 56-year-old, something ownership was not in favor of. It was then that Fangio was pursued, to the point where the Panthers were willing to give him the league’s largest coordinator contract (Twitter link).

With Reich expected to call plays on offense, the team’s ultimate choice at the DC spot will go a long way in determining their success on that side of the ball. Steve Wilks, who guided Carolina to an impressive run at the end of the season filling in for Matt Rhule, remains on staff for now, but he is likely to head elsewhere with new faces coming in on the Panthers’ sidelines.

Frank Reich Targeting Vic Fangio For Panthers’ DC Role

The Falcons interviewed Vic Fangio for their defensive coordinator job but went in another direction. The Panthers look to be planning a stronger push to bring in the acclaimed defensive mind.

Frank Reich is targeting Fangio to be his DC in Carolina, Josina Anderson of CBS Sports reports (on Twitter). While Fangio has also met with the Dolphins and may have a 49ers return in his back pocket, Anderson adds momentum is building toward a Fangio-Reich partnership. Fangio, 64, interviewed with the Panthers last week.

This would be a reunion for Fangio, who was the Panthers’ first DC back in 1995. Reich was on that roster, serving as the team’s starting quarterback for its first three games before moving into a backup role behind then-rookie Kerry Collins. Fangio stuck around in Carolina longer than Reich the first time around, lasting in that DC position through the 1998 season.

Reich and Fangio have otherwise not overlapped, and given the interest in the veteran coordinator, Anderson adds it could take making him the league’s highest-paid DC to finalize this reunion. After the Broncos fired Fangio last January, he has re-emerged as one of the most sought-after coordinator candidates. It will be interesting to see if the well-traveled defensive boss will accept a Carolina offer or wait for one of the other DC jobs — potentially San Francisco’s or with one of the teams still searching for a head coach — to open up.

Prior to coming to Denver, Fangio earned Assistant Coach of the Year acclaim for his work with the 2018 Bears. Chicago led the NFL in scoring defense that season — a 12-4 campaign that earned Matt Nagy Coach of the Year acclaim — and Fangio churned out productive Denver defenses despite repeated issues keeping Von Miller and Bradley Chubb healthy at the same time. Fangio also played a significant role in the 49ers’ back-to-back-to-back NFC championship game appearances in the early 2010s. Fangio has coached in the NFL since 1986 and has been a coordinator for five teams.

While Reich and Fangio would present quite the experienced play-calling tandem, the Panthers also have Marquand Manuel on their radar. The Jets assistant interviewed for the position, and ESPN.com’s Jeremy Fowler notes (on Twitter) the former Falcons DC impressed Panthers brass during the meeting. The Jets’ safeties coach for the past two seasons, Manuel was the Falcons’ DC from 2017-18. The former safety who spent the 2007 season with the Panthers interviewed with the team before Reich’s hire, like Fangio, but he was in Seattle during part of GM Scott Fitterer‘s tenure in the Seahawks’ front office.

Reich’s vision for his staff helped sway the Panthers to hire him, Joe Person of The Athletic adds (subscription required), so how Carolina’s assistant cadre comes together will be interesting to observe. Fangio is one of the biggest names on the market, and considering the options he probably has, it would be quite the get for Reich to start his second-chance HC opportunity.

Panthers Request Permission To Interview Marquand Manuel For Coordinator Position

The Panthers have requested permission to interview Jets safeties coach Marquand Manuel for “a coordinator position,” per Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com (via Twitter). Presumably, Carolina is interested in installing Manuel as its defensive coordinator.

Manuel, 43, enjoyed an eight-year playing career in the NFL from 2002-09 and joined the coaching ranks as an assistant special teams coach with the Seahawks in 2012. He worked as the Falcons’ defensive coordinator from 2017-18, but Atlanta finished in the bottom-five in total defense in 2018 after boasting a top-10 unit the year before, and the team parted ways with Manuel at the conclusion of the campaign.

After one year as a DBs coach with the Eagles in 2020, Manuel joined Robert Saleh‘s first Jets staff in 2021 and has served as Gang Green’s safeties coach over the past two seasons. The Jets allowed the fourth-fewest yards per game and the third-fewest passing yards per game in 2022, which is certainly a feather in Manuel’s cap (though this is the first time we have heard of outside interest in his services in the current coaching cycle).

Of particular interest here is what the interview request could mean for Steve Wilks‘ candidacy as the Panthers’ head coach. Wilks, who stepped in as interim HC upon Matt Rhule‘s ouster in October, guided the club to a surprising 6-6 finish to the season, and he nearly captured a division title in the process. He also appears to have the full support of his locker room.

Nonetheless, as David Newton of ESPN.com tweets, Al Holcomb is Wilks’ defensive coordinator. So if the team is going in a different direction at DC, it could mean that it is, by extension, planning on going in a different direction at head coach.

While two of Carolina’s HC candidates, Jerod Mayo and Jim Harbaugh, are no longer in the running, there are nine other options (including Wilks) as of the time of his writing. The full list is as follows, and the majority of the remaining candidates have an offensive background, which Wilks does not have but which may be a priority for team ownership:

Coaching Notes: Steelers, Jags, Bruschi, Jets

Offensive line coach Mike Munchak left the Steelers for Denver after the 2018 season, and Pittsburgh’s O-line immediately declined. Shaun Sarrett initially replaced Munchak, but after two disappointing seasons he wasn’t retained this offseason. It was a big hire for Mike Tomlin that was talked about a lot, and in the end he opted to promote from within. The Steelers are promoting Adrian Klemm to the role, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network tweets. Klemm had spent the past two seasons as an assistant offensive line coach. A second-round pick of the Patriots back in 2000, Klemm spent a handful of years in the league as a player. He then started coaching in the college ranks, and was the run game coordinator and associate head coach at UCLA for a while under Jim Mora.

Here are a few more coaching notes from the NFL universe:

  • Urban Meyer continues to build his inaugural Jaguars staff, and now he’s settled on a secondary coach. Chris Ash has agreed to fill that role, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com tweets. Ash, the former head coach at Rutgers, is a pretty big name by secondary coach standards. Meyer continues to surround himself with guys who have coordinating and head coaching experience, most recently adding Brian Schottenheimer to the staff. Ash has an extensive college coaching history, but this will be his first NFL gig. He was Meyer’s co-defensive coordinator for a couple of years at Ohio State, so there’s plenty of familiarity here. He’ll work under new Jacksonville DC Joe Cullen.
  • Legendary Patriots linebacker Tedy Bruschi is getting into the college coaching game. He’ll serve as a senior adviser to new Arizona head coach Jedd Fisch, the university announced. Bruschi is an Arizona alum and Fisch served under Bill Belichick as the Patriots’ quarterbacks coach this past season, so this isn’t totally out of left field. Bruschi will apparently be staying on as an analyst at ESPN, so you’ll still be seeing him on your TV screens.
  • Robert Saleh is adding two people he’s familiar with to his new Jets staff. New York is hiring Marquand Manuel as safeties coach and Tony Oden as senior defensive assistant/cornerbacks coach, Tom Pelissero of NFL Network tweets. As Pelissero points out, Manuel and Saleh coached together in Seattle while Oden was DBs coach in San Francisco with him last year. Manuel was the Falcons’ defensive coordinator for two seasons from 2017-18, and spent last season coaching DBs in Philly.

Eagles Hire Former Falcons DC Marquand Manuel

The Eagles have a new secondary coach. Philly is hiring Marquand Manuel for that role, according to Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com (Twitter link).

It’s a relatively high profile position coach hiring, as Manuel previously served as Atlanta’s defensive coordinator. After the Falcons’ defense tanked, Dan Quinn fired him following the 2018 season. He spent this past year out of football, and is now resurfacing on Doug Pederson’s staff. Manuel spent eight seasons in the league as a safety before becoming an assistant under Quinn in Seattle and eventually following him to Atlanta.

Philadelphia has seen a good amount of turnover on their coaching staff this offseason, and they’re still searching for a new offensive coordinator. Manuel will be taking over a position group that has been in turmoil the past couple of seasons. The Eagles’ secondary has been plagued by injuries the last two years, and the back-half of their defense has often struggled as a result. Just a few days ago, we heard that they were planning on targeting cornerbacks in free agency, and it sounds like they could overhaul the unit.

NFC East Notes: Manning, Manuel, Cowboys

Eli Manning has not expressed interest in a coaching position, but the likely Hall of Fame quarterback has not closed the door on remaining with the Giants in another non-playing capacity. The recently retired passer said he would be interested in a role with the team going forward, Mike Garafolo of NFL.com tweets. The Giants likely would not say no to such an arrangement, though it remains to be seen if Manning would consider a position immediately. If Peyton Manning‘s measured approach to post-retirement offers is any indication, it may be a while before his younger brother commits to returning to the league in a potential front office role. Manning will not land on the Giants’ reserve/retired list, as he was set to be a free agent in March. The 16-year Giant recently said he believed he could still play. So Eli might be patient before entering a post-playing role, in the event an unforeseen development opens up a starting job somewhere.

Here is the latest from the NFC East:

  • The Eagles interviewed former Falcons defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel for a role on their staff, Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com notes (on Twitter). They are eyeing the former safety-turned-coach as their secondary coach. Manuel, 40, did not coach this season but spent five years with the Falcons — four of which as either Atlanta’s secondary coach or DC. Dan Quinn fired him after the 2018 season.
  • After making several splashy additions to their staff, the Cowboys added a couple of lower-profile assistants. Mike McCarthy hired ex-Rams assistant special teams coach to the same position, Field Yates of ESPN.com tweets. A former NFLer, the 30-year-old Daniels spent the past two seasons on Sean McVay’s staff working under John Fassel. McCarthy hired Fassel to be his ST coordinator and has signed off on bringing the Rams’ special teams staff to Dallas. The Cowboys also hired ex-Redskins defensive quality control coach Cannon Matthews, per Yates. Matthews will remain in a defensive quality control role.
  • Although the Giants brought in ex-Cowboys coach Marc Colombo to head up their offensive line, they will keep one of Pat Shurmur‘s assistants on staff in this department. Ben Wilkerson will remain as the team’s assistant O-line coach, Dan Duggan of The Athletic tweets. Wilkerson, 37, served in this role in each of Shurmur’s two seasons.

Bengals Cast Wide Net In DC Search

The Bengals are casting a wide net in their search for a defensive coordinator and other defensive staffers, as Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. The club is expected to request (or has requested) interviews with former Falcons defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel, Texas A&M DC Mike Elko, Florida DC Todd Grantham, and Saints defensive backs coach Aaron Glenn.

The Bengals made an offer to veteran coach Dom Capers this week, but he turned them down and is now believed to be Miami-bound. Capers, 68, would have given the Bengals a Rams replica of sorts as he would have supported 33-year-old head coach Zac Taylor. The Bengals also flirted with former Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio, an indication they would prefer a veteran counterweight to Taylor.

Outside of Grantham, however, the coaches they’re now considering are on the younger side of 50. That could indicate a change in philosophy for Cincinnati. Or, it could be a case of the old adage – beggars can’t be choosers.

As previously reported, the Bengals also requested an interview with Rams DB coach Aubrey Pleasant.