By: Jared Clifton (Twitter: @unstuckintime82)
Take Your Best Schott: Five Outside the Box Candidates to Replace Brian Schottenheimer as Seattle’s New OC
In somewhat of a surprise move, the Seattle Seahawks and OC Brian Schottenheimer parted ways after three seasons. Despite a hot offensive start to the 2020 season and the eighth-best finish in points per game; another late-season offensive swoon and a perceived difference in the preferred scheme between HC Pete Carroll and Schottenheimer led to the ouster.
After beginning the year with eight straight games of 27+ points per game (34.3ppg), the new look “Let Russ Cook” offense struggled to just two such showings in the second half (23.13 ppg), which was bottom third in the league. Whether this crisis of production was initiated by Carroll’s propensity to focus more on the run game is inconsequential to the job status of Schotterhimer, but it will remain largely consequential as Carroll looks to hire his fourth offensive coordinator.
There are a number of coaches that would love to fill this role and many of the names that will be discussed and even interviewed are those we’ve heard nearly every hiring cycle, but these five aren’t necessarily the favorites to land the post but are names that would make a lot of sense as Pete Carroll rallies the offensive troops into the waning days of his illustrious coaching career.
Much like the end of the Brian Schottenheimer era, Darrell Bevell’s predecessor to his seven-year run as the Seahawks OC, Carroll parted ways with one year OC Jeremy Bates for “offensive philosophy differences”. Bevell brought Seattle one of their greatest offensive stretches in team history, including a Super Bowl win in 2013 and a Super Bowl appearance in the year following.
Unfortunately, it is perhaps the final offensive call as the OC in Seattle, an ill-advised play-action slant that was intercepted by Malcolm Butler in the end zone to effectively end the Seahawks chances at back to back titles, that defines Bevell’s tenure in the rainy northwest. Although he remained in his position for three more seasons, that could cause a pause in revisiting an offensive play-caller that brings with him very sore memories for Hawks fans.
However, assuming Bevell is not successful in his pursuit of the Detroit Lions head job, after a five-game stint as interim head coach, it makes too much sense to reinstall the man that was instrumental in the development of Russell Wilson and Top 10 offensive units in all but two seasons at the helm.
In a less than ideal situation in the Matt Patrica led Lions regime, he oversaw marginal improvements to the offense each season, without full seasons of QB Matthew Stafford in 2019 and WR Kenny Golladay in 2020. He was able to utilize a pass leaning offense to play the Lions few strengths, but not so pass-heavy that it wouldn’t be adjustable as Carroll appears ready to move back to a more run-centric approach.
It’s true what they say, that you can never go home, but with Bevell’s name closer to the circles of head coaching candidates, this one makes sense to help both his and Seattle’s brand in the very near future.