Saturday, January 25, 2014
Schwartz hire adds intrigue to Bills games
By Michael Rothstein
Jim Schwartz just added some intrigue to one of the Detroit Lions home games next season. The former Lions coach became the Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator Friday night, giving the 47-year-old a new job and a chance to run a defense again.
He’ll likely be a good one, too. Detroit’s defense played well last season and during his time in Tennessee, he was one of the better coordinators in the NFL. Even as his team struggled in Detroit, Schwartz never turned into a bad coach.
He did improve the Lions from the time he took over and he helped construct one of the top rushing defenses in the NFL last season. Schwartz seems to be a good match in Buffalo as well.
The Bills had a strong pass defense last season -- fourth in yards allowed per game, second in interception percentage and third in sacks -- but struggled some against the run. Considering how Detroit did against the run this season, he could turn them around quickly.
He’ll inherit a defense that should be mostly intact as well and much like with the Lions, will have a strong front four featuring Mario Williams, Kyle Williams and Marcell Dareus.
It’ll be a defense the Lions will actually see twice in Detroit. They’ll play in the preseason and again during the regular season at Ford Field. And don’t think for a second the Lions fans will forget Schwartz’s outburst toward them in the final home game. So it’ll be interesting to see what that reaction is when the teams play in the fall.
And it'll also be interesting to see how he approaches defending Matthew Stafford. No defensive coach in the league likely knows Stafford better than Schwartz, so that could be a fascinating matchup.