At the end of every NFL regular season, Black Monday falls upon the head coaching landscape and a handful of them lose their jobs.
With every lost job, though, a door opens for a new candidate.
So far, we’ve seen a total of five head coaches get fired (including Ben McAdoo earlier in the season) and we’ve had a coach retire. Beyond that, there are two other coaches mulling their futures.
That’s going to be one of the focuses here: examining the coaching carousel.
Here, we’ll break down what is going on team by team and discuss a few key skill-position players who could impact their respective teams in a big way.
After going for nearly 2,000 scrimmage yards, it’s that time again—Le’Veon Bell wants to get paid.
According to Jason La Canfora of CBS Sports, it’s a “foregone conclusion” the Steelers will franchise-tag the running back.
As noted by ProFootballRumors.com, in previous negotiations, Bell sought $16 million per season.
The 25-year-old is an exception to the rule, but in this day and age, the running back position isn’t looked at as highly as it once was. Sure, backs such as Ezekiel Elliott and Leonard Fournette are being drafted high, but it’s unlikely we’ll see another Adrian Peterson-like extension of $100 million over seven years.
This will drag out right until the July 15 deadline, but the Steelers should lock Bell up for the next few seasons and offer more money per year.
He gets used a ton and most running backs will start to slow down, but there’s no denying what Bell does to this Steelers offense.
Larry Fitzgerald and Carson Palmer
In the wake of head coach Bruce Arians hanging up the Kangol, it appears that both wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald and quarterback Carson Palmer may follow suit, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network:
Palmer doesn’t come as much of a surprise—he’s suffered some brutal season-ending injuries the last few years, and he’s not getting and younger.
However, Fitzgerald seemed on board with returning in 2018. With Arians gone, though, that will mean the veteran receiver will need to learn another new offense. That might not be worth it to the 34-year-old at this point in his career.
This would open up a ton of extra volume for other Cardinals wide receivers and may lead to them also drafting a quarterback high in the upcoming draft.
After firing John Fox, the Bears have turned their attention to four potential candidates:
Vic Fangio: According to Rapoport, Fangio could “could get a look” from the Bears. The defensive coordinator knows the team and the system, but this looks more like a courtesy than anything:
Josh McDaniels: The Patriots offensive coordinator is going to be a hot commodity as the coaching searches wear on. He’s had past head coach experience with the Denver Broncos and St. Louis Rams, but neither of those episodes ended the way he would have liked.
Now, though, McDaniels is most likely ready and would get to groom Mitchell Trubisky the way he’d like. In Rapoport’s words, McDaniels is a “QB guru:”
Pat Shurmur: In the same Rapoport report, we’ve learned the Bears are also requesting to interview Pat Shurmur. The offensive coordinator of the Minnesota Vikings has done wonders this season, with Case Keenum leading the way. Will Shurmur jump ship to stay within the same division? If he did, he would have a chance to shape Trubisky.
John DeFilippo: According to Mike Garafolo of NFL Network, the man who assisted in making Carson Wentz the MVP candidate he was, John DeFilippo, is on the radar is well. His work as the Eagles quarterback coach and working directly with Wentz is enough on its own. What could he do with Trubisky?