Rich Scangarello

Coaching Rumors: 49ers, Chargers, Jaguars, Eagles

The 49ers‘ staff is starting to come together, as Matt Barrows of The Athletic writes. Chris Foerster has been bumped up to primary offensive line coach while Rich Scangarello will return as the quarterbacks coach. Scangarello served as SF’s QBs coach in 2017 and 2018 before the Broncos tapped him as their OC in 2019. After a rough time in Denver and one year in Philly, he’s headed back to the Bay Area.

Here’s a look at the latest coach and coordinator news:

  • The Chargers will interview Colts defensive backs coach Jonathan Gannon for their defensive coordinator job, as Ian Rapoport of NFL.com tweets. Gannon is also being considered by the Bears for their DC role.
  • Meanwhile, new Chargers coach Brandon Staley is bringing Rams assistant Joe Barry along for the ride as his defensive passing game coordinator and linebackers coach (Twitter link via Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero of NFL.com).
  • The Jaguars have requested an interview with Colts quarterbacks coach Marcus Brady for their offensive coordinator job, as Pelissero tweets.
  • The Eagles are interested in interviewing Cowboys special teams coach John Fassel, according to Marcus Hayes of the Philadelphia Inquirer (Twitter link). Fassel, the son of ex-Giants head coach Jim Fassel, spent eight years as the Rams’ ST coordinator. He also served as the Rams’ interim head coach for the final three games of 2016.

GM/Staff Notes: Staley, Schoen, Jets, Eagles

The Falcons have secured an interview with Bills assistant GM Joe Schoen, according to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports (on Twitter). This will be Schoen’s second GM interview this offseason. He met with the Panthers earlier this week. Schoen has been on the rise for a bit now, moving from Dolphins player personnel director (2014-17) to the assistant GM of a Bills franchise that has raised its profile considerably during his tenure under Brandon Beane. Under Beane, Schoen and Sean McDermott, the Bills have made three playoff berths in four years. They were 0-for-17 in the 21st century previously.

Here is the latest from the GM and coaching carousels:

  • Brandon Staley‘s Rams defense ranked first in scoring defense this season, and that could allow him to continue a meteoric NFL rise. In addition to the Jets requesting an interview with Staley, the Chargers are interested in speaking with the first-year coordinator, Jourdan Rodrigue of The Athletic tweets. Staley spent the 2018 season as the Bears’ outside linebackers coach before following Vic Fangio to Denver and working in the same capacity there. But he has become a hot coaching commodity who could end up in a leading role soon.
  • The assistant leading the charge against Staley’s defense Saturday may be competing with him for the Jets‘ top coaching job. Seahawks OC Brian Schottenheimer is expected to be on the Jets’ radar to replace Adam Gase, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. Schottenheimer has been Seattle’s OC for three seasons but served in that role in New York longer, working as offensive coordinator under Eric Mangini and Rex Ryan from 2006-11.
  • While the Eagles are retaining Doug Pederson, they will lose DC Jim Schwartz and part ways with two offensive assistants. Marty Mornhinweg and Rich Scangarello will not be back in Philly next season, Chris Mortensen of ESPN.com tweets. Despite both joining the Eagles last season, each was on an expiring contract. This marks another offseason of shakeups to Pederson’s offensive staff. Both Frank Reich and John DeFilippo departed in 2018, while the Eagles fired OC Mike Groh last year. Both Mornhinweg and Scangarello held non-position-coaching titles; the former worked as a senior consultant and the latter functioned as a senior assistant. Mornhinweg is a veteran NFL OC who served as Lions HC from 2001-02, while Scangarello was the Broncos’ OC last season.
  • The Washington GM search is beginning to take shape. In addition to ex-GMs Marty Hurney, Martin Mayhew and Rick Smith, Washington is expected to show interest in ex-Panthers exec Ryan Cowden, per La Canfora. While Cowden worked with Ron Rivera in Carolina, he has been with the Titans since 2016. He currently works as their VP of player personnel.

Eagles Promote Press Taylor

The Eagles’ revamped coaching staff is starting to come together. This week, the Eagles promoted quarterbacks coach Press Taylor by tacking on the title of passing game coordinator, as Tom Pelissero of NFL.com tweets. The club is also set to hire former Broncos offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello for a staff position, Pelissero hears.

It’s not immediately clear what position Scangarello will occupy, or what this all means for the Eagles’ own OC vacancy. Scangarello served as the Broncos’ OC in 2019, but the results were not pretty. After finishing out as the No. 14 team in offensive DVOA in 2018, they regressed to 26th in the NFL. Still, as we’ve seen before, teams aren’t always looking at a coach’s latest results, and Scangarello rolled into Denver with plenty of hype thanks to his previous work in San Francisco.

Taylor, meanwhile, was being considered for the OC position as recently as January 31st. Although he hasn’t been explicitly ruled out for the post, his additional title seems to indicate that he’s no longer in the running for the job. Taylor, 32, has been on the Eagles’ staff since 2013 but has only served as a position coach for the last two years. He is perhaps best known for his role in the Eagles’ legendary “Philly Special” that helped them capture their long-awaited Super Bowl ring.

The Eagles fired Mike Groh just after their early playoff exit, despite previous comments from head coach Doug Pederson indicating that he’d be staying on board. Weeks later, the Eagles are still looking for his replacement.

Browns To Interview Rich Scangarello For OC

While working on their GM and defensive coordinator roles, the Browns are now moving along with their offensive coordinator search. New HC Kevin Stefanski plans to interview recently fired Broncos OC Rich Scangarello for the role, Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports.

The interview is expected to take place Monday or Tuesday, per Cabot. The Broncos fired Scangarello less than a week ago, bringing in former Browns HC Pat Shurmur to head up their offense.

Stefanski is expected to call plays in Cleveland but has indicated he is not committed to doing so. Scangarello worked as the 49ers’ quarterbacks coach prior to moving to Denver in a play-calling role. The Broncos’ offense ranked 28th in both points and yards this season, but the first-time NFL OC did not have too much to work with, talent-wise. That would be less of an issue in Cleveland.

Scangarello, 47, oversaw an offense forced to use three quarterbacks due to injury. But the Broncos finished 4-1 once Drew Lock took the reins, and it came as a surprise when Vic Fangio fired his first-year coordinator. Perhaps Scangarello’s most impressive showing, however, came when he helped first-time starter Brandon Allen to a midseason victory over the Browns.

Previous Browns OC Todd Monken recently accepted an offer to become Georgia’s OC. The Browns have used three different offensive coordinators since the start of the 2018 season, going from Todd Haley to Freddie Kitchens to Monken.

The Browns’ 2019 offense, despite being one of the league’s most-hyped units, was a massive disappointment. The Kitchens-orchestrated attack ranked 22nd in both points and yards, frequently prone to mismanagement and failing to fully unleash prized trade acquisition Odell Beckham Jr. Stefanski and the new OC will be tasked with rejuvenating Baker Mayfield, who took a step back after a strong finish to 2018.

Mike Shanahan On Broncos’ Interest, Coaching Plans

Mike Shanahan revealed his side of the late-2017 discussions centered around the Broncos bringing him back as head coach. The two-time Super Bowl-winning HC said he was “close” to taking the job, had it been offered.

I was close. I was close,” Shanahan said, via The Athletic’s Nicki Jhabvala (subscription required). “But one thing that has to happen: You all have to be on the same page. And one thing you have to make sure of when you are a head football coach is the owner, the GM, the quarterback are all on the same page. If it doesn’t happen, the chance of you winning a Super Bowl aren’t very good.

So, anyway, if that situation had happened, I was going to take it. If not — but anyway, I had a great conversation with John as everybody knows and it didn’t work out. Sometimes it works out for the right reasons.”

John Elway made the initial contact regarding the short-lived reunion, Jhabvala reports, and the Hall of Fame quarterback-turned-GM discussed the job — which then belonged to Vance Joseph — with his former coach. But at the time, Broncos CEO Joe Ellis informed Elway his firing Joseph after one season would have required him to conduct a thorough search — rather than earmark the job for Shanahan. The Broncos would have obviously needed to comply with the Rooney Rule as well.

As for the quarterback component of this, Kirk Cousins may or may not have been part of the equation. Conflicting reports emerged on then-free agency-bound passer following Shanahan to Denver. But the Shanahan process did not progress too far, and the Broncos made other plans. They retained Joseph for the 2018 season and signed the player Cousins wound up replacing in Minnesota, Case Keenum. They are now on another HC-QB combo in Vic Fangio and Joe Flacco.

Shanahan’s greatest coaching moments came in Denver. He helped the Broncos to two Super Bowl titles and four playoff byes. His Raiders and Redskins tenures did not go as well. The 66-year-old coach has not ruled out a return to the sidelines.

You always miss coaching,” Shanahan said. “But it’s been five years. I made the decision a long time ago, right when I got fired. I said if I didn’t get the right job right away where we had a chance to win a Super Bowl that I was probably going to do what I’m doing, which is kind of being a dad and following (my) son and the organization and being a part of it.”

Elway did enlist Mike Shanahan’s help while securing a deal with new OC Rich Scangarello, who worked for Kyle Shanahan for two seasons. Scangarello’s offense will look somewhat similar to what the Broncos primarily ran under the elder Shanahan.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

West Draft Rumors: Cardinals, Murray, 49ers, Broncos

On Saturday, Arizona State receiver and local product N’Keal Harry visited the Cardinals for a private visit, NFL Network’s Ian Rappoport tweets.

Possessing the size, strength and speed of a prototypical outside receiver, Harry could be an option for Arizona should he still be on the board when the team is on the clock at No. 33. Harry should fully be in play there, as the Cardinals reportedly like the value of going receiver with their second-round pick, Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller tweets.

Should the team go with Harry, it would pair him with another local standout in Christian Kirk, who impressed as a rookie before missing time with an injury down the stretch. The pair of young wideouts would join veteran and future Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald in a potentially loaded receiver corps for either Josh Rosen or Kyler Murray, should the team go with the Oklahoma product as expected a week before the draft.

Here’s more draft talk from around the league:

  • Sticking with the Cardinals, though the team has been heavily linked to Murray, Kent Somer of the Arizona Republic believes the team should pass on the reigning Heisman Trophy winner. He thinks the team should stick with Rosen, attempt to trade down to pick up more picks, and, if that option is not possible, take either Quinnen Williams or Nick Bosa.
  • Speaking of Williams, many NFL executives reportedly prefer the Alabama defensive lineman to Ohio State’s Bosa as the draft’s top overall prospect, Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk writes. In a poll of 14 personnel members by Bob McGinn, six chose Williams as the top picks, twice as many as Bosa, who received the second most. Also receiving votes were Josh Allen, Kyler Murray, Dwayne Haskins and Jeffery Simmons.
  • The Broncos have been heavily tied to quarterback’s heading into this week’s draft. Helping pick that signal-caller, if they do indeed go that route, is new offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello, who learned how to pick the position from 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan, the Denver Post’s Ryan O’Halloran writes“Kyle had a lot of success (evaluating quarterbacks) and (he) showed me some things that I use in the evaluation process,” Scangarello said. “It’s a tough position to evaluate. You just get them in (the meeting room) and you try and find out what you can about them.” Denver has been linked with Drew Lock, but Daniel Jones, Murray and Dwayne Haskins could all fit the bill at No. 10 if everything falls right.
  • The 49ers have been heavily tied to either Bosa or Williams with the No. 2 pick on Thursday, but the team is looking to the skill positions for their Round 2 pick, NBC Sports’ Matt Maiocco writes. At the top of the list is wide receiver, where they are looking to find a starter-level pass catcher to complement second-year wideout Dante Pettis and veteran Marquise Goodwin. Maiocco notes the receivers who have been in for a visit include Harry, A.J. Brown, Hakeem Butler, Jalen Hurd and Deebo Samuel.

 

 

49ers Notes: Draft, Coaching Staff

In 2017, the Niners traded the No. 2 overall pick to the QB-needy Bears in exchange for the No. 3 pick and three more draft choices. Matt Barrows of The Athletic can imagine a similar scenario unfolding this year as the Niners, once again, hold the No. 2 overall pick.

The draft board seems a little uncertain right now, but quarterbacks tend to drift up from the bottom of the first round to the Top 10 as the big day draws near. This year, teams like the Giants (No. 6 overall pick), Jaguars (No. 7), Broncos (No. 10) and Dolphins (No. 13), and Redskins (No. 15) could all be candidates to move up the board to get their next signal caller.

Here’s more out of SF:

  • 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan said he initially rebuffed the Broncos’ attempts to speak with Rich Scangarello because he wanted to ensure that Scangarello would in fact be moving up from quarterbacks coach to a play-calling offensive coordinator (Twitter link via ESPN.com’s Nick Wagoner). Once that was confirmed, Shanahan cleared the way for Scangarello to become Vic Fangio‘s top offensive coach.
  • Conversely, Shanahan says he declined requests for Mike LaFleur and Mike McDaniel to explore other opportunities because neither position they would have interviewed for would have been a promotion. In the case of both men, neither one would have been given play calling responsibilities. The Packers, Browns, and Vikings all expressed interest in LaFleur while the Packers and Cardinals reached out on McDaniel.
  • Meanwhile, assistant offensive line coach Adam Stenavich was permitted to accept the Packers’ offensive line coach position.

Broncos Hire Rich Scangarello

The Broncos have officially hired Rich Scangarello as their new offensive coordinator, tweets Adam Schefter of ESPN.com. Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link) first reported Scangarello was expected to land in Denver barring any snags in negotiations.

Scangarello had a strong first interview with Vic Fangio & Co. earlier this week and he’ll be back in the building for Round 2 on Wednesday. Scangarello has just four years of NFL assistant coaching experience, but he wowed Denver brass nonetheless, and the 49ers’ initial reluctance to let him interview with the Broncos shows how much he is valued.

In 2018, the Broncos finished 19th in total offense with 350.1 yards per game. Scangarello, or whoever the hire is, will be expected to draw them closer to the Top 10.

As shown in PFR’s Offensive Coordinator Tracker, Scangarello is the only known candidate at this time. Mike Munchak was thought to be in the mix after Gary Kubiak bailed, but he has since signed on to be the Broncos’ new offensive line coach.

Broncos To Interview Rich Scangarello

The Broncos’ interview with Rich Scangarello is back on. After being rebuffed initially, the 49ers have reversed course to allow the Broncos to talk with their quarterbacks coach (via Mike Klis of 9News).

With that, the Broncos and Scangarello will discuss Denver’s offensive coordinator vacancy on Monday afternoon. The 46-year-old is one of a few known candidates for the job that was accepted, then rejected, by Gary Kubiak last week.

Scangarello has just four years of NFL assistant coaching experience, but he did spent four years as a college OC between Northern Arizona and Wagner. Scangarello patterned his passing game after Kyle Shanahan, which is why he accepted a low-paying assistant job to join his Falcons staff in 2015 and followed him to San Francisco.

As shown in PFR’s Offensive Coordinator Tracker, Scangarello is the first known candidate to interview for the job since the Kubiak hire went bust.

Latest On Broncos’ OC Search

The Broncos continue to search for a new offensive coordinator, but it sounds like a front-runner has yet to emerge.

For starters, three candidates have already been connected to the opening: former head coach Gary Kubiak, 49ers quarterbacks coach Rich Scangarello, and Steelers offensive line coach Mike Munchak. There was some optimism that the organization would hire Kubiak, but the two sides ultimately decided to go in different directions. The Broncos were denied their request to interview Scangarello, but Troy Renck of Denver7 (via Twitter) notes that the team is still pushing to interview the San Francisco quarterbacks coach.

When it comes to Munchak, it sounds like the long-time coach may not even be a candidate for the offensive coordinator opening. Renck says the Broncos are hoping to hire the 58-year-old as their offensive line coach, a position Munchak has held with the Steelers since 2014. Munchak’s contract with the Steelers has (or will soon) expire, so the Steelers wouldn’t truly have the means to block him from taking a different gig. We learned yesterday that Munchak was set to meet with the organization.

Ultimately, the final decision will come down to new head coach Vic Fangio. Nicki Jhabvala of The Athletic tweets that “the hire will be completely Vic Fangio’s call.”

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.