James Bettcher meeting with teams about defensive coordinator jobs

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James Bettcher interviewed for a promotion from defensive coordinator to head coach in Arizona, but the Cardinals hired former Panthers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks as Bruce Arians’ successor on Monday.

Wilks is expected to bring Al Holcomb with him from Carolina to be the defensive coordinator, which leaves Bettcher to look for a job with another team for the 2018 season. His search process is reportedly getting underway on Tuesday.

Ian Rapoport of NFL Media reports that Bettcher will meet with the Titans and Giants about their defensive coordinator jobs at the Senior Bowl in Mobile. Both teams have new coaches with Tennessee tabbing the defensive-minded Mike Vrabel and the Giants hiring former Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur.

Former Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio is reportedly in the mix for defensive coordinator under Shurmur as well.

Bettcher became the coordinator in Arizona in 2015 and previously served as the team’s linebackers coach.

10 responses to “James Bettcher meeting with teams about defensive coordinator jobs

  1. Seems like his defenses always take about 6-10 weeks to gel. Then if you get someone who knows how to read his blitzes (see Carolina/Arizona playoff game from January 2016, or 2017’s Rams/Cardinals game in London), then his defenses get absolutely slaughtered. On the bright side, he always seemed to do well against teams like Seattle.

  2. His defensive plans have always been excellent; but his players’ effort not always 100%; but many blame BA for that because BA was always messing with the team’s psyche and giving more leeway to his favorites.

    Besides, Bettcher did not have the NFL’ affirmative action push going for him. Instead as sure the the sun rises and sets each day, pressure was surely applied by the NFL to the Cardinals for “something” to happen to fill the last HC vacancy after all of the earlier vacancies were filled by Gruden in Oakland, McDaniels in Indy, Vrabel in Tennessee, Patricia in Detroit, Shumur in NYG, and Nagy in Chicago; coincidently, most had none or merely token interviews with non-White candidates.

  3. As a Cards fan, all I can say is thank goodness they didn’t make Bettcher the head coach. He inherited a great defense from Todd Bowles, and they regressed under Bettcher.
    And this was before they lost the five players to free agency.
    With Bettcher the defense rarely played well when it counted, and only showed up when the pressure was off and they were playing for nothing.

    The Cards defensive players have been ecstatic over the hiring of Wilks, knowing he is a defensive guy and knowing full well that would mean Bettcher would be given his walking papers. Haven’t heard any defensive players calling for the Cards to keep Bettcher. What does that tell you.

    Happy to see him move on.

  4. Bettcher is extremely intelligent. I read that he has a genius level IQ and earned honors in college. I think he has the make up to be a good coach. That said his defenses consistently took too long to perform up to standard often starting to play well in week 5 or later. His defenses also could never stop the dink and dunk short passing game. It always killed us and that got really old. He blitzed a great deal, but until last year we were never rated near the top in sacks as a defense. I dont feel like he utilized Honey Badger in the right way putting him in coverage for most of his games this last season. I think it says a great deal that not a single player stepped up and said they wanted him for a HC. Obviously the front office didnt feel like he was ready.

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