Is this the year Eric Bieniemy finally gets hired?

Kansas City Chiefs v Denver Broncos
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The Kansas City offense, once it got out of neutral on Sunday night, did what it often does. It scored a lot of points in not much time.

The performance underscores the fact that too much time has passed for offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy to get a chance to run a team of his own.

Why hasn’t he gotten a shot yet? Per multiple sources, the periodic and persistent chatter regarding Bieniemy being a “bad interview” is BS. As one source with knowledge of the situation explained it to PFT over the weekend, Bieniemy did a great job in last year’s hiring cycle. And he continues to improve, as he receives (and he has) specific feedback on how to make his presentation even better.

So what’s the problem? It comes down to the reluctance, to date, of a team to make the bet that Bieniemy the great offensive coordinator will become Bieniemy the great head coach.

The skills sets are very different. For every one that works out, more than one don’t. (There’s a chapter in Playmakers about this dynamic; it’s football’s version of the Peter Principle.) And so the teams deciding on coaches must make the projection that a coordinator who has never been a head coach will become a good head coach.

The projection requires research that extends well beyond the predictable on-the-record comments of current boss and current players. It also necessitates a complete study of the coach’s history. Has overachievement happened at prior steps on his overall path?

Ultimately, it’s a risk. It’s a chance. Others with lesser accomplishments have gotten the chance. With 25 percent of the league looking for new coaches, it’s hard to argue that Bieniemy hasn’t earned his chance.

After four years coordinating an offense that features Patrick Mahomes and that has been to three straight AFC Championships and two straight Super Bowls, a growing number of league insiders believe Bieniemy has earned his shot. Folks throughout the Chiefs organization are actively supporting him, publicly and privately.

In Minnesota, less of a projection is involved. Bieniemy served as the team’s running backs coach from 2006 through 2009. He added the title of assistant head coach in 2010.

That could be good, and it could be bad. Bieniemy worked for Brad Childress, an ultimately unpopular head coach who failed to take one of the best teams in franchise history (the 2009 edition, Brett Favre’s first year) to the Super Bowl, fueled by the inexplicable placement of 12 men in the huddle coming out of a timeout. Then came 2010, a disaster that saw Childress fired during the season.

This obviously doesn’t disqualify Bieniemy from the Minnesota job. Again, however, they know him there better than they know him elsewhere. Somewhere, someone needs to figure out that Bieniemy deserves a chance to become as successful as a head coach as he’s been as a coordinator.

45 responses to “Is this the year Eric Bieniemy finally gets hired?

  1. Is this the year he can get hired because of you know what and show he is the product of a good system and a great qb. He doesn’t even call the plays on his team now.

  2. As a Chiefs fan, I hope he gets a job. The sooner the better. We’re tired of hearing about it.

  3. The real question you should ask, is this the year Eric Bieniemy has a good interview because that’s been the issue.

  4. What happens if hes a complete flop as a HC? Are all these people who dont own teams that have been calling/demanding for him to be hired gonna eat the crow on their plate?

  5. Hopefully wherever he coaches has the 2nd coming of Patrick Mahomes and a ton of offensive weapons!

  6. I hope so. By all accounts he’s ready, and a good and worthy dude. Hey, JOE JUDGE got a job. Nuff said.

  7. The Jags could do worse. …matter of fact they HAVE. Eric can develop Lawrence and he’s seen Andy hand of the reigns to his D coordinator and special teams coordinator. I would like to see what he can do.

  8. Interestingly, his odds will probably improve if they lose this Sunday… Teams don’t like to wait till after the Super Bowl to make their hires.

  9. You already said it. Different skill sets. A great coordinator should stay a great coordinator, unless they surely have the ‘it’ factor a head coach needs. Without knowing him personally, I don’t see that necessarily with Bienemy.

  10. You cansay what you want about Bienemy. But players RESPECT former players. Bienemys leadership would be off the chats. Furthermore,Dan Campbell (a former TE’s coach-never called plays)is a head coach and Bienemy isnt. Let that sink in.

  11. Let’s face it – Andy Reid still calls the plays, and his “offensive coordinator” is a glorified clipboard holder. Just look at his OCs that got hired as HC – Pat Shurmur, Matt Nagy, Brad Childress, etc. Not exactly the crew that inspires confidence…

  12. No this isnt the year because he isn’t even a good coach. Andy Reid is the OC and Mahomes makes plays that’s it.

  13. Because there is a long history of offensive coordinators who don’t call plays and/or have elite QBs that bomb as head coaches. Bienemy will continue to have nothing to hang his hat on with Reid and Mahomes running the show

  14. The Chiefs want him gone so bad it is not even funny. I can be a great OC with the QB’s they have had and coach backing me up on play calling. He will not be a great coach I just fill it, but I hope he gets a job so we all can see just how great he is.

  15. Offensive coordinators call the plays. If you don’t call the plays, you’re not truly the offensive coordinator. Anyone can see that KC’s success on offense is largely due to Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes.

  16. EB isn’t even the choice for KC. Kafka is Reid’s replacement when he leaves, and everyone knows it. But KC needs him gone so they don’t have to play the bad guy when the time comes.

  17. He doesn’t design the offense or call the plays, and I don’t believe he will be bringing Mahomes, Kelce and Hill.

    So no, he won’t be getting a job, and he shouldn’t.

  18. The truth is that Bieniemy could be the best head coach ever and not succeed because of bad ownership , bad GM, bad quarterback, bad talent to begin with and poor draft gambling (no player is guaranteed) or many other reasons. Just like Bill Belichick failed in his 4 years at Cleveland in the early 90s.

  19. Depends – Can anyone say with certainty, What percent, IF any, of the offensive plays does he call on his own?… Cause if he is just calling in the play he is told to by Andy, then he doesn’t deserve any HC consideration!

  20. the real question should be “does EB see an opportunity anywhere else that would, shpuld, or could lead to success?”
    .
    would you leave your OC position from a superbowl contender for the jets, giants, jags, or lions?
    .

  21. I would take him in Jacksonville in a heartbeat. Honestly, I would take Voldemort from Harry Potter, if he can develop Trevor Lawrence!

  22. No I think Eric is wound to tight for a HC. He needs to mellow out some and he’ll be fine

  23. Leftwich and EB both won a SB as OCs and neither got a head job in the copycat NFL? Folks, it’s not hard to tell what’s going on. Don’t give the me this he doesn’t call plays stuff or doesn’t interview well. Has nothing to do with it. If you want a guy, you go get him and sign him. When have you ever heard, oh, he didn’t interview well? And what plays did Joe Judge call as a special teams coach? Keep making up your excuses.

  24. I would like to know how his interviews have went so far. We saw it from former Patriot coaches fail over and over. The Chiefs offense has been close to a pro bowl team lately, Can’t just say there success is because of his coaching over the talent around him.

  25. How much of the Chiefs vaunted offense is Eric Bienemy vs. Andy Reid? It seems that whenever announcers, color commentators, and studio pundits talk bout the actual offense, they talk about Andy Reid, and that the only time they talk about Eric Bienemy is to complain that he has not gotten a head coaching gig. Maybe the media has fueled the perception that he is more of a figurehead than the actual offensive coordinator.

  26. A team currently hiring a coach fired the last coach because the team has failed. If the GM doesn’t hit on a successful coach with this next hire, they will most likely lose their job and probably end their career. Andy Reid usually lets his OC call the plays. He relieved EB of that duty and hasn’t worked with him to give it back. Something isn’t right and I think GMs are not willing to risk their careers on the only OC Andy Reid doesn’t trust to call the plays.

  27. Obviously the teams that have interviewed him know something we don’t. Every coordinator in the game isn’t meant to be a HC and that’s perfectly ok. No need to beat the drum every year.

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