How is Chiefs OC Eric Bieniemy not a head coach yet?

The Kansas City Chiefs made NFL historical past with their sensible comeback to defeat the Houston Texans within the Divisional Round, 51-31. Down 24-0, quarterback Patrick Mahomes went off within the second quarter to offer his group a 28-24 lead at halftime. Mahomes tied former Washington QB Doug Williams’ postseason document with 4 touchdowns in a quarter.

KC didn’t decelerate within the second half, scoring one other 24 factors to finish a 51-7 run. FIFTY ONE TO SEVEN! It was a fairly unhealthy search for Bill O’Brien’s Texans group, leaving many questioning if he’s the appropriate man for the job.

But a fair greater query popping out of the sport is how within the hell hasn’t an NFL group employed Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy but?

Bieniemy has one of the spectacular offensive teaching resumes within the league, and he has assist from the Chiefs to pursue head teaching jobs.

Bieniemy, who has been with the Chiefs since Andy Reid was employed in 2013, interviewed for 3 of the lately vacated head teaching jobs this yr: the Panthers, Browns, and Giants. Last week, Carolina employed former Baylor head coach Matt Rhule, and the Giants went with former Patriots particular groups coordinator/broad receivers coach Joe Judge. The Browns employed Vikings offensive coordinator Kevin Stefanski.

Bieniemy’s background and expertise makes him the proper head teaching candidate.

In his first season as offensive coordinator in 2018, Bieniemy helped the Chiefs to the AFC Championship Game. The Chiefs completed first within the league in complete offense and scoring, developing simply 41 factors shy of the 2013 Broncos’ document for factors scored in a season (603).

In Mahomes’ first season as a starter, he gained NFL MVP honors and have become the third quarterback in league historical past to throw for no less than 50 touchdowns in a season.

The Chiefs put collectively a top-five scoring offense in Bieniemy’s second season, regardless of a string of early accidents. They are at the moment driving a seven-game win streak that has put them one win away from taking part in of their first Super Bowl since 1970.

Kansas City’s success this season isn’t all due to Mahomes, both. When Mahomes went down with a sprained kneecap, the Chiefs’ offense didn’t decelerate a lot with backup Matt Moore behind heart. Bieniemy’s offense scored 80 factors over a 2-1 stretch with Moore as its major passer.

Bieniemy’s offenses even put up massive numbers even earlier than Mahomes exploded onto the scene. He was the Chiefs’ operating backs coach from 2013-2017. Under his tutelage, Jamaal Charles rushed for greater than 1,000 yards in 2013 and 2014. Prior to Kansas City, Bieniemy coached with the Vikings from 2006-2010. In that point, Adrian Peterson led the NFC in speeding yards with 1,341 in 2007, then led the NFL with 1,760 in 2008.

Even Bieniemy’s boss, Reid, has been stumping for him to be employed away:

“I’d say hire him, like right now,” Reid stated in early December, by way of Chiefs Wire. “That’s what I’d tell you. I don’t want to lose him, but if you’re asking me if he’s ready to be a head coach? Yeah, he’s ready. He was ready last year. Nobody is in more control than what he is within this game. He is a leader of men. He knows football, but he knows the offense like the back of his hand. He is in the quarterback room every day. I think if you talked to Patrick, I think Patrick would tell you how much of an influence he has had on him.”

Mahomes, after all, echoed his head coach:

“I think the details and the way he is able to control the room to get the best out of every single player is a big thing,” Mahomes stated, additionally by way of Chiefs Wire. “[Bieniemy] holds you to a high standard and he holds you to the standard that you need to be perfect with every single rep you get in practice. I think those details and that standard he holds everybody to elevates everyone’s game.”

Those endorsements are vital. Reid’s teaching tree is one of the profitable and wide-reaching within the NFL. Ten of Reid’s former assistants have earned head teaching jobs, together with the likes of Nagy, John Harbaugh (Ravens), Doug Pederson (Eagles), and Sean McDermott (Bills). Harbaugh and Pederson have each gained Super Bowls.

This isn’t the primary time Bieniemy has been handed over.

He interviewed for the Jets, Bucs, Bengals, and Dolphins final season, too, earlier than returning to the Chiefs. The head coaches employed as a substitute of him have been, like this yr, a mixture of retreads (Adam Gase, Bruce Arians) and first timers (Zac Taylor, Brian Flores). They went a mixed 21-43 in 2019, and none had successful seasons.

This yr, Rhule, Judge, and Stefanski are additionally first-time NFL coaches, and Stefanski, the one different NFL OC, had been a coordinator for simply a yr and alter. Bieniemy doesn’t have any much less NFL head teaching expertise than any of these guys.

Bieniemy’s scenario spotlights the NFL’s evident, and admittedly embarrassing, lack of variety amongst head coaches. Despite the league’s Rooney Rule, which requires groups to interview ethnic-minority candidates for each head teaching and senior soccer operations jobs, just one minority head coach was employed this cycle. That was longtime Panthers head coach Ron Rivera, who is now with Washington.

Zero black coaches have been employed throughout this teaching carousel season, and only one — Dolphins head coach Brian Flores — was employed throughout final yr’s cycle. The undeniable fact that Bieniemy, and different proficient black coaches, have been missed means that the Rooney Rule isn’t doing what it’s in place to do.

The rule itself is needed, however groups needs to be extra dedicated to giving minority coaches alternatives than merely checking a field. There are different elements within the lack of of black head coaches within the NFL, together with an institutionally flawed pipeline, however the crux of the issue falls on the overall managers and executives who’re in cost.

Bieniemy has a wealth of NFL expertise, his offenses rating a ton of factors, he comes from one of the profitable teaching timber within the league, and his gamers respect him. The Chiefs nonetheless have a shot at reaching the Super Bowl, too. How he hasn’t been employed but is baffling, to say the least.


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