With the Oakland Raiders picking Denver defensive coordinator Dennis Allen as head coach this week, the big-time hires in the AFC West have been made. However, there are some openings remaining in the division that should be filled in the next couple of weeks.
Let’s take a look:
Denver: The Broncos need a defensive coordinator with Allen leaving after one season. Head coach John Fox has said he is not in a rush to replace Allen. Candidates include former Jacksonville coach Jack Del Rio (he was a coordinator for Fox in Carolina) and Denver linebacker scoach Richard Smith.
Kansas City: New head coach Romeo Crennel is planning to remain the team’s defensive coordinator, a position he held since 2010. The Chiefs have reportedly talked to both in-house and outside candidates for the open offensive-coordinator job. One candidate may be Brian Daboll, who, like Crennel and Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli, has New England ties.
Oakland: Allen will hire close to a completely new staff, so that will likely take a little time. If Al Saunders does not indeed remain as offensive coordinator, Allen could pursue former Green Bay coach Mike Sherman, who is also being wooed by Miami. Kansas City defensive backs coach Emmitt Thomas – Allen’s mentor – could be a possibility for defensive coordinator.
San Diego: The Chargers have the least work to do. They need to hire a linebackers coach to replace John Pagano, who was promoted to defensive coordinator earlier this month.