Okay, perhaps it’s simply too late into the evening for rational thought, but the latest reports of LA Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris meeting with the Indianapolis Colts on a second interview to fill their vacant head coach position seemed way too positive to ignore. Per ESPN NFL Insider Jeremy Fowler, Morris met with the Colts beyond their scheduled time and well into the evening hours.
Since this is their second round of interviews, that is frequently a very good sign for both the candidate and the team that they have found their guy. Of course, for now, it’s all just Rams Rumors, as no decision has been made by the Colts.
But that could change very quickly.
In the meantime, let’s take a quick and dirty peek at some names that have been tossed around in terms of the team’s potential future defensive coordinator candidates just in case.
It’s almost a certainty that all LA Rams fans know and would love to have Vic Fangio as the team’s next defensive coordinator. The problem is that the LA Rams are starting late to the bidding, and by the time the Indianapolis Colts decide (or the Denver Broncos, who are also keen on hiring Raheem Morris), Fangio may have already been scooped up. There are mixed reports coming out now about the likelihood of Fangio joining Frank Reich’s coaching staff with the Carolina Panthers. But this is the latest report.
Will the LA Rams be in the running for Fangio? Well, the NFL is already pursuing Fangio, and unfortunately, the LA Rams may find themselves out of the running before they ever get to interview the guy. But Fangio has been a name linked to taking over as DC of the San Francisco 49ers if they lose DC DeMeco Ryans to a head coaching position at either the Denver Broncos or the Houston Texans. The Rams could not only get a quality DC but stop their fiercest rival from landing him.
Another defensive coordinator who has frustrated Sean McVay’s offense in the past is Brian Flores. He has also been a name that has been linked to a number of NFL teams that are currently in the hunt for a new defensive coordinator. But Brian Flores is also a name that has appeared as a plaintiff in a lawsuit against the NFL, alleging discriminatory hiring practices.
But that has not caused NFL teams to balk at interviewing him in this cycle. In fact, he is one of the more frequent names linked to interviews right now:
Unfortunately, Flores is also being pursued right now. And if he does not land the Cardinals head coaching job, he has already been interviewed by the Minnesota Vikings for their defensive coordinator position. Until the Cardinals turn Flores away as their head coach, the Vikings will likely be on standby. But the Vikings have the inside track on Flores right now, an advantage that I am not certain that the LA Rams can overcome.
One of the candidates for the LA Rams defensive coordinator position is Defensive Line Coach/Defensive run game coordinator Eric Henderson. There is a lot to love about Coach Henny, and that is why I am a strong supporter of him to be hired if the opportunity arises.
There is so much to love about Coach Henny. But before I go into that, let’s address the elephant in the room. This would be Coach Henny’s first time as an NFL defensive coordinator. But the Rams hired positional coach Brandon Staley for his first DC adventures, and he was an instant success. Beyond that, Coach Henny was given the opportunity to call defensive plays in the LA Rams preseason games, and the defense responded by playing their best half in the preseason.
Why was Henny so effective in that limited sampling?
In short, he is aggressive. This is the Founding Father of #DAWGWORK – Discipline, Attitude, Work ethic, and Grit. Henny has been the NFL’s Defensive Line Coach of the Year, but perhaps more importantly, he has almost single-handedly coached the Rams’ defensive front into a sturdy buttress that has been one of the stingiest defenses to run and score on the ground against.
Now, imagine the LA Rams defense, the entire defense, with that same love of hard work, passion, and the grind that has made the Rams’ defensive line feared in the NFL.
No matter who of these three candidates is hired, I believe that the Rams’ defense will inspire cheers from the fanbase once more. It all starts with the hiring of Rams DC Raheem Morris for a head coaching job. And right now, the Rams rumors have him closing in on doing exactly that.