The Lions will go with the most experienced coach in their offensive coordinator search pool. They are finalizing a deal with Anthony Lynn, Michael Lombardi of The Athletic tweets.
Lynn spent the past four seasons as the Chargers’ head coach and was the Bills’ OC in 2016. Lynn joined several position coaches in the running for the Detroit job and was linked to the Seattle OC position as well. But his bounce-back opportunity will come in the Motor City.
This will be a reunion between Lynn and new Lions HC Dan Campbell. During Campbell’s playing career, he was with the Cowboys in 2005. Lynn coached Dallas’ running backs that season, during a 14-year run as an NFL running backs coach. This connection helped bring Lynn to Detroit, with Adam Schefter of ESPN.com noting (via Twitter) Lynn wanted to work with Campbell and DC Aaron Glenn again. Officially hired as Lions DC Saturday, Glenn was also on the 2005 Cowboys’ roster.
Lynn, 52, beat out Ravens QBs coach James Urban, former Jets OC John Morton, Steelers wideouts coach Ike Hilliard and Bills QBs coach Ken Dorsey for this post. The former Chargers HC brings far more experience than this lot of position coaches and will be in position to call plays again — something he did not do this past season with the Chargers.
While Lynn was not the Bolts’ primary play-caller during his stay as their head coach, each of the team’s four offenses in this time ranked in the top 11 in total yardage. This past season began a promising new chapter for the Chargers, who saw Justin Herbert break out quicker than expected — en route to becoming the Offensive Rookie of the Year favorite — under the tutelage of Lynn and OC Shane Steichen.
The veteran coach will now attempt to lead a Lions offense in transition. Matthew Stafford remains under contract but has been mentioned in trade speculation, with the Lions having hired a new coach and GM this month. The Lions also have starting wideouts Kenny Golladay and Marvin Jones set for free agency.