Scott Turner

Coaching Notes: Turner, Colts, Cards, Flores

In addition to the previously reported player gripes about the state of the Commanders‘ offense, John Keim of notes others in the organization expressed frustration about the inconsistencies within the team’s offensive philosophy. Washington fired three-year OC Scott Turner on Tuesday, despite having signed him to a three-year extension, and signs point to the team making a more concerted effort to focus on its run game. Ron Rivera and GM Martin Mayhew expressed a desire to run more, even after the Commanders ranked fourth in rushing attempts (538). But Keim adds a litany of complaints surfaced about the nature of the offense — from the team deviating from effective plays to Turner’s scheme being difficult for quarterbacks to digest. Concern about the offense emanated inside the building throughout the year, per Keim, who adds Rivera sat in on offensive meetings at points amid the unrest.

The Commanders’ issues at quarterback and on their O-line, a unit full of veterans, hamstrung Turner’s unit. So did injuries, as the team planned to have Brian Robinson play a major role from the start. The two gunshot wounds he sustained in August derailed those plans, and Carson Wentz barely ended up playing with the third-round rookie this season. While outside candidates will be interviewed, Keim adds the Commanders generally like their offensive scheme. QBs coach Ken Zampese, a second-generation NFL assistant who was previously the Bengals’ OC, will likely be an in-house candidate.

Here is the latest from the coaching ranks:

  • The Cardinals fired Kliff Kingsbury after four seasons and did so less than a year after signing him to an extension that ran through 2027. While Kingsbury firing rumors had been brewing for months, CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson notes (via Twitter) the young HC did not appear to be expecting it. When a “surprised and distraught” Kingsbury addressed his staffers, he mentioned some of them could be retained. One of them might be DC Vance Joseph, who has been connected to a possible promotion. The former Broncos HC served as Kingsbury’s DC throughout his four-year tenure.
  • One of Frank Reich‘s Colts staffers earned an interview for the team’s HC vacancy. Special teams coordinator Bubba Ventrone met with Jim Irsay and Co. about the position Wednesday, Tom Pelissero of tweets. Ventrone, 40, broke into coaching after 10 NFL seasons as a player. After spending time on Bill Belichick‘s staff, Ventrone joined Reich’s staff in 2018 and has been in position as Indy’s ST coordinator since. This is his first interview for a head coaching gig. The Colts can interview their own staffers, unattached coaches and Eagles or Chiefs staffers this week but must wait until midway through next week to begin meeting with candidates from teams playing on wild-card weekend.
  • Although Brandon Staley guided the Chargers to the playoffs, Dan Graziano of does not get the sense the second-year HC’s job is 100% safe. A loss to the Jaguars may prompt Chargers ownership to change course. Sean Payton lurking may well affect Staley’s standing, should the Jags prevail. The Bolts job came up several months ago for Payton, who already lives in Los Angeles, and this potential partnership has been a poorly kept secret in NFL circles.
  • Brian Flores will interview for the Browns‘ DC job Thursday, Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette tweets, though the Steelers linebackers coach is believed to have other teams interested. Flores’ discrimination lawsuit is ongoing, but the former Dolphins HC just wrapped a season on Mike Tomlin‘s staff. The Browns are also interviewing Jim Schwartz and Sean Desai, with a Jerod Mayo request out there as well.
  • Two more Panthers assistants have left to join Matt Rhule at Nebraska. Rob Dvoracek and Garett McGuire have left the Panthers to become the Cornhuskers’ linebackers and wide receivers coaches, respectively, Joe Person of The Athletic tweets. Both were in low-level assistant roles with Carolina and each played for Rhule — Dvoracek at Temple, McGuire at Baylor. These exits follow Terrance Knighton‘s; Knighton departed the Panthers in-season.

Commanders Fire OC Scott Turner

The Commanders will be on the hunt for a new play-caller for the 2023 season. They are firing Scott Turner, NBC Sports Washington’s JP Finlay reports (on Twitter).

Turner had been in place as Washington’s OC throughout Ron Rivera‘s three-year tenure, and the second-generation coach was with Rivera in Carolina as well. ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler reported minutes ago Turner was on shaky ground, and the Commanders will look for an upgrade on the market. Rivera confirmed the move shortly after the reports emerged.

This decision comes 10 months after Washington extended Turner, but the team has consistently struggled to put up points during Rivera’s tenure. Washington has finished 25th, 23rd and 24th in points scored from 2020-22. Although the team’s quarterback instability undoubtedly represents the main reason for those rankings, Turner will pay the price.

The son of Norv Turner, Scott landed his first NFL job under Rivera in 2011, becoming an offensive quality control staffer with the Panthers in Rivera’s first season. After some moves around the league and a year under Jim Harbaugh at Michigan, Turner resurfaced in Carolina during Rivera’s final two Panthers seasons. In the wake of the Panthers firing Rivera (and Norv Turner moving to a non-OC role) in 2019, Scott Turner finished that year running Carolina’s offense. He parlayed that into the Washington gig. (Washington also fired Norv Turner back in 2000, after he lasted seven years as HC.)

Rivera had gone with the same OC-DC pairing — Turner, Jack Del Rio — throughout his Washington tenure, but assuming he stays on as the Commanders’ HC, a hot seat will await. Washington made the playoffs in 2020, albeit with a 7-9 record, but has not cleared .500 during Rivera’s stay. That will ramp up the pressure on the veteran coach for the 2023 season.

With Washington, Turner was tasked with running offenses built around several different quarterbacks. The team, which has started six Week 1 QBs since 2017, has seen injuries impact its QB room significantly during Rivera’s tenure. Alex Smith‘s return from his gruesome leg injury aided the then-Washington Football Team in 2020, when Smith started over Dwayne Haskins. But Haskins still started six games for Washington that year. Smith’s retirement led to the Commanders signing Ryan Fitzpatrick in 2021. Fitzpatrick lasted barely 10 plays that season, going down in Week 1 and never playing again. This year’s Carson Wentz experiment largely busted.

The Commanders traded two Day 2 picks for Wentz but went just 2-5 in his starts, benching him for both Taylor Heinicke and Sam Howell this season. Wentz did not have the chance to play with rookies Brian Robinson and Jahan Dotson much, but after returning from his broken finger, he threw three interceptions in a Week 17 loss that eliminated the Commanders. With the team having the chance to save $26MM by cutting Wentz, it would be a bit of a surprise if he returns in 2023.

Quarterback issues aside, this move also comes after Commanders players showed frustration with the team’s play-calling, Sam Fortier of the Washington Post writes. Logan Thomas said last week, “The way I put it is: We got so much talent, we should be scoring more points than we have,” with Fortier adding nine other players expressed issues with Turner’s play-calling. Washington extended Terry McLaurin, drafted Dotson in Round 1 and has Curtis Samuel on an $11.5MM-per-year deal. Both its top running backs (Robinson, Antonio Gibson) also were Day 2 choices. Turner’s replacement will be tasked with maximizing this lot of higher-end investments.

Commanders To Extend OC Scott Turner

Washington will start a different Week 1 quarterback for a sixth straight season, acquiring Carson Wentz to be the latest. But the team ensured play-calling continuity by agreeing to terms on an extension with Scott Turner.

Turner, who took over as Washington’s offensive coordinator when Ron Rivera arrived in 2020, agreed to a multiyear extension, J.P. Finlay of NBC Sports Washington tweets.

Formerly the Panthers’ quarterbacks coach, who moved up to Carolina’s OC to close out the 2019 season, Turner will aim to maximize Wentz’s talents. Turner, 39, has been in the NFL since 2011 and is on his second run as an OC. The second-generation NFL play-caller has mentored Dwayne Haskins, Ryan Fitzpatrick (briefly) and Taylor Heinicke. Turner will be tasked with rehabilitating Wentz’s career, which has skidded off track after the Eagles and Colts traded him in the past year.

Washington did not rank inside the top 20 in points or yards during Turner’s first two seasons, but the team did not exactly have much at quarterback during that time. This led to the Commanders sending the Colts two Day 2 picks and a 2022 second-round swap for Wentz. How Wentz performs may well determine Rivera and Turner’s fates come 2023.

Commanders Extend OC Scott Turner

Scott Turner is staying put. This week, the Commanders agreed to a multi-year contract extension with their offensive coordinator, according to J.P. Finlay of NBC Sports Washington (on Twitter).

[RELATED: Commanders Trade For Wentz]

The new deal will keep him in place through 2024 as he guides an offense led by Carson Wentz. Turner has history with Commanders coach Ron Rivera, dating back to the Panthers where he served as a quality control coach (2011, 2012) and quarterbacks coach (2018, 2019).

They work well together, though they’ve yet to see real results in D.C. Washington has ranked just 28th in total yards over the last two years with Turner at the helm. The acquisition of Wentz, they hope, will change that. The Commanders have churned through a number of quarterbacks since 2020, but Wentz and his ninth-ranked QBR should help to steady things.

Before dealing for Wentz, the Commanders reportedly offered three first-round picks for Russell Wilson. Ultimately, they were topped by the Broncos, but Wentz should still provide Turner with a significant upgrade under center.

Coaching Notes: Giants, O’Connell, Browns

Since former Mississippi State coworker Joe Judge landed the Giants‘ HC job, Freddie Kitchens has been linked to a staff position. A report circulated Tuesday indicating Judge will hire Kitchens for an unspecified role (Twitter link via, but’s Jordan Raanan tweets nothing is finalized between the Giants and the former Browns coach. The Giants have hired a quarterbacks coach, Jerry Schuplinski, but certainly could add the longtime offensive assistant in another capacity.

Here is the latest from the coaching carousel:

  • Before deciding to reunite with Scott Turner, Ron Rivera interviewed 2019 Redskins offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell for the job, J.P. Finlay of NBC Sports Washington notes. Rivera was interested in former Giants HC Pat Shurmur for OC, but he declined the interview and opted for the Broncos’ play-calling job. O’Connell landed on his feet as well, becoming the Rams’ offensive coordinator.
  • While the Kitchens hire is not yet certain, veteran secondary coach Jerome Henderson will be joining Judge’s Giants staff, Adam Caplan of Sirius XM Radio tweets. Most recently the Falcons’ DBs coach/defensive passing-game coordinator, the 50-year-old Henderson has also coached the Jets’, Browns’ and Cowboys’ secondaries dating back to 2008. Henderson was a 1991 first-round pick who played eight NFL seasons.
  • The Giants will also add Jody Wright to their staff, according to The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman (Twitter link). Wright worked with Judge at Mississippi State in the 2000s and was most recently an offensive assistant with the Browns under Kitchens in 2019. Wright also spent time at Alabama during the 2010s and was an assistant head coach at UAB prior to relocating to Cleveland.
  • On the subject of the Browns, they are not retaining several Kitchens staffers. Most notably, Kevin Stefanski will not bring back quarterbacks coach Ryan Lindley, Field Yates of tweets. Lindley, tight ends coach John Lilly, assistant defensive line coach John Parella and quality control staffers Deuce Schwartz, Tyler Tettleton and Alonso Escalante will not be back. Lindley, 30, served as Browns running backs coach after Kitchens was promoted to OC midway through the 2018 season, and the former quarterback held Cleveland’s QBs coach job this past season.
  • The Cardinals hired another recent Browns staffer, bringing in offensive assistant Jim Dray, Yates adds. A former Cardinals seventh-round pick in 2010 as a tight end, Dray played eight seasons — mostly in Arizona and Cleveland — and wound up with the Browns in 2019 as an offensive quality control coach.
  • Recently notified he was out in Cleveland, James Campen may have an opportunity with Carolina. The Panthers are interested in the former Browns offensive line coach, David Newton of tweets. Campen was Mike McCarthy‘s offensive line coach from 2007-18 and spent 15 years as a Green Bay assistant prior to his Cleveland move last year. The Browns hired Bill Callahan to replace him on Monday.

Redskins Hire Scott Turner As OC

The Redskins’ Scott Turner interview produced a job offer. The second-generation coach will become Washington’s new offensive coordinator, the team announced. Washington also announced that Nate Kaczor would return as the team’s special teams coordinator.

The son of former Redskins head coach Norv Turner, Scott worked under Ron Rivera with the Panthers from 2018-19. Scott Turner will succeed Kevin O’Connell in this role. O’Connell was initially a candidate to remain with this new Redskins regime and even drew consideration for the HC job Rivera eventually secured. But the one-year coordinator now appears headed elsewhere.

Scott Turner served as Rivera’s quarterbacks coach in Carolina, up until Rivera’s dismissal. After Rivera was ousted, Turner was elevated to OC and he impressed with his play-calling acumen. The 37-year-old assistant will now be tasked with developing Dwayne Haskins.

While Turner worked with young Panthers signal-callers this season in Kyle Allen and Will Grier, the Redskins having selected Haskins in the first round makes this a much higher-profile assignment for the young assistant. Turner previously served as Carolina’s offensive quality control coach from 2011-12, so this will be his third job working with Rivera.

Cam Newton played well under the guidance of the Turners to start the 2018 season. The dual-threat quarterback had the Panthers at 6-2 and was completing passes at a higher rate. However, Newton’s midseason shoulder injury altered the franchise’s quarterback situation. Newton being done for the 2019 season after Week 2 thrust Allen into action. After the UDFA showed initial promise under the Turners, keeping the Panthers afloat in the NFC playoff race, he faltered down the stretch as the Panthers lost their final eight games.

Despite featuring All-Pro Christian McCaffrey, the Panthers ranked 28th in offensive DVOA (31st in passing offense). Washington possessed one of the few lesser-regarded attacks by comparison, ranking 30th in this metric.

In other Redskins news, Joe Person of The Athletic reports that former Panthers DL coach Sam Mills III will be joining Rivera’s Washington staff (Twitter link).

Tom Pelissero of first reported that Turner would be hired (Twitter link).

Redskins Eyeing Scott Turner For OC Job

The Redskins are zeroing in on Scott Turner as their offensive coordinator, Tom Pelissero of tweets. Turner served under Ron Rivera in Carolina and they could be on track for a reunion. 

Turner served as Rivera’s quarterbacks coach in Carolina, up until Rivera’s dismissal. After Rivera was ousted, Turner was elevated to OC and he impressed with his play calling. The 37-year-old would be a logical choice for the Redskins, who seem likely to part ways with Kevin O’Connell.

O’Connell has received permission to speak with other teams about potential OC vacancies, a source tells Ian Rapoport of (on Twitter). The Redskins’ offense struggled in 2019, but O’Connell has long been viewed as a rising star in coaching circles. O’Connell was reportedly considered for the Redskins HC job before Rivera was hired and Rivera (at least, at one point) was open to keeping him on board.

Redskins To Interview Scott Turner

Panthers offensive coordinator Scott Turner will interview with the Redskins for their OC vacancy, according to Ian Rapoport of (on Twitter). Incumbent Kevin O’Connell remains the frontrunner for the job, but Rapoport hears that Turner could wind up as the team’s quarterbacks coach if he doesn’t land the OC post. 

The Redskins wasted little time in hiring new head coach Ron Rivera and, in turn, Rivera started building out his staff immediately. On New Year’s Day, Rivera tapped Jack Del Rio as his new defensive coordinator.

Rivera is already familiar with Turner’s skillset – Turner served as Rivera’s QB coach in Carolina, up until Rivera’s dismissal. After Rivera was ousted, Turner was bumped up to OC as his father, Norv Turner, was transitioned to a different role.

The Turner family, of course, also has history with the Redskins. Norv served as the Redskins’ head coach from 1994-2000.

Panthers Owner Discusses Coaching Change, Front Office, Future

Panthers owner David Tepper was forced to make a difficult decision today, firing long-term coach Ron Rivera. Since Tepper took over ownership of the organization in 2018, he’s had Rivera on the sideline. Now, the team will turn a page and start hunting for their next head coach.

Secondary coach Perry Fewell will serve as the Panthers head coach on an interim basis. The shakeup also will see offensive coordinator Norv Turner transition to special assistant to the head coach as quarterbacks coach Scott Turner moves to offensive coordinator. When it comes to the front office, GM Marty Hurney will keep his job, but Tepper revealed that he’ll be searching for an assistant general manager and/or a vice president of football operations.

Tepper sat down with Bill Voth of (Twitter link) this afternoon to discuss the coaching change, the owner’s outlook for the organization, and the team’s future shuffling of the front office. We’ve snagged all of the notable soundbites below:

On why he decided to fire Ron Rivera:

“[It was] a very hard move. Ron Rivera, besides being a good coach, is one of the finest men I’ve ever met in my life.

“Look, I came here two years ago. I wanted to show patience on the football side to see how it was going. On the business side, we made vast and sweeping changes. I didn’t want to make those vast and sweeping changes on the football side. I wanted to take time and patience to see how it could go.

“I just thought it was time, given the way things have gone the last two seasons, to put my stamp on the organization on the football side, as we’ve done on the business side of the organization. As much respect as I have for Ron, I think a change was appropriate to build things the way I want things to be built.”

On why the move was made now instead of after the season:

“There are competitive reasons why I wanted to make sure we were out there looking at all personnel possible for the future. I didn’t want to be having inquiries where Ron didn’t know what I was doing.

“I didn’t want to be doing things not upfront; thats not who I am. So I’d rather be straight-up and honest, and if I’m going to make a change, I’m going to make a change. And not to get a competitive disadvantage over other teams; if I need to talk to people, i want to talk to them, and I want to do it in a straight-forward, honest way.”

On why Fewell was chosen as the interim head coach:

“I have different coaches on the staff and I’m looking at the future now. And the future is: who may I have as potential candidates for different roles. Perry is a person who can command a room, can be a general, and I think that he is the right person to have that interim role… and to be auditioning for that role in the future.

“As far as the other choice we’ll probably make is to make Scott Turner a play-call offensive coordinator. In that respect, same thing: I want to see what Scott can do. Again, in an audition sort of way, see how he does it. He has some new ideas, and we’ll see how they get implemented.”

On the decision to move Norv Turner from offensive coordinator to special assistant to the head coach:

“Norv Turner is obviously still a tremendously knowledgable coach who I respect a lot. Norv has been around and is very knowledgable. Scott is potentially a future offensive coordinator of some sort. Why not see what he has to offer here.”

On what he’ll be looking for in a new head coach:

“What I want, just for the organization in general, is a mesh of old and new. Old football discipline. Modern processes, modern analytics, statistics, and the rest of that. But I respect old discipline, too. Listen, I was with a team in Pittsburgh that was the epitome of old-school discipline, so I want to see that brought in, I want to see that mesh. And what I want to have more than anything…I want to put the best people in the best positions to be successful. And I want those coaches to put our players on the field in the best positions to be successful, period.

“This whole process – they don’t build Rome in a day. People think if I make a magic change today, it’s going to make the organization better tomorrow… it is not. This is going to be a process.”

On how an assistant GM can help the front office:

“Marty Hurney is one of the best recognizers of college talent in the nation. I don’t want to lose that. And he’s also not a bad manager. There’s also new processes that I want to bring in. I think the modern football organization needs a couple people there [in the front office].”

On what today’s move means for the future of the organization:

“As far as a process is concerned, it’s the first step in a process. I’m making sure we have a standard of excellence on all sides of this business.”

Panthers Hire OC Norv Turner

The Panthers have hired longtime NFL coach Norv Turner their next offensive coordinator. The news was first reported by David Newton of

Turner was in Carolina on Wednesday to formally interview for the position and it didn’t take long for the two sides to hammer out an agreement. On Friday, the team made it official.

Norv Turner (vertical)

Turner’s hiring should come as no surprise, especially given that he was the first — and only — candidate mentioned following the firing of Mike Shula on Tuesday. Reports indicated the Panthers preferred to hire a veteran coach, and Turner certainly fits that bill. He’s served as a coordinator for six clubs and been a head coach for three more teams. Turner, 65, was most recently the offensive play-caller for the Vikings before abruptly resigning midway through the 2016 campaign.

In addition to his wealth of experience, Turner is also close with Panthers head coach Ron Rivera. Turner hired Rivera as an assistant coach and later defensive coordinator when both worked for the Chargers, and Turner also recommended Rivera for the Carolina job when it became open in 2011.

With the Panthers, Turner will take over a unit that boasts pieces such as quarterback Cam Newton, running back Christian McCaffrey, wide receiver Devin Funchess, and tight end Greg Olsen. Despite those options, Carolina’s offense struggled in 2017, ranking 12th in scoring, 17th in DVOA, and 19th in yards.

Meanwhile, Scott Turner will join his father in heading to Carolina, as he’ll become the Panthers’ new quarterbacks coach. The younger Turner most recently served as QBs coach at the University of Michigan, and has worked with the Panthers, Browns, and Vikings at the NFL level.