Buffalo Bills head coach Sean McDermott has seen enough.
Hours after Buffalo's disappointing 24-22 last-second loss to the Denver Broncos, the Bills fired offensive coordinator Ken Dorsey, replacing him with quarterbacks coach Joe Brady, who will presumably call plays the rest of the season.
Dorsey's offenses have been wildly inconsistent following his predecessor, Brian Daboll, departing to become the New York Giants' head coach in 2022. Last season, Buffalo's 28.4 points per game were second only to the eventual Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs, but are averaging just 26.2 through the first 10 games of this season. Meanwhile, Josh Allen's 25 interceptions over the past 27 games matches his total from the full 2020 and 2021 campaigns.
The Bills lost three of four prior to Dorsey's dismissal, and Buffalo is averaging only 20.6 points over the last five games.
Here are four potential candidates as the Bills' next offensive coordinator, to replace Dorsey:
1. Joe Brady, Bills Interim Offensive Coordinator
Brady will get the first chance to secure the permanent offensive coordinator position, after getting to call plays over the Bills' final seven games of the season.
With offensive coordinator experience on Matt Rhule's staff with the Carolina Panthers, Brady is viewed as a rising star in the coaching community, at age 34. Brady worked alongside Joe Burrow, as LSU's passing-game coordinator for the 2019 season, now he'll have the chance to call plays for Josh Allen and Co. If Allen shows that he can trim turnovers over the second half of the season and the offense makes strides from averaging 26.2 points per game, Brady might go into this offseason providing the Bills with some staff continuity as the coordinator for 2024.
2. Lunda Wells, Cowboys Tight Ends Coach
Lunda Wells is quickly developing a reputation as one of the premier tight end coaches across the entire league, both in terms of developing young talent at the position and maximizing the veterans in his rooms.
Evan Engram had two of the most productive seasons of his career while playing under Wells, and the Cowboys have quickly gotten meaningful contributions from second-year tight end Jake Ferguson (36 catches for 354 yards with four touchdowns this season), along with rookie Luke Schoonmaker, who has caught three passes for 14 yards with a touchdown, in limited playing time. Wells also has experience as an offensive line coach, adding an element of versatility to his experience. A well-respected assistant under the head coaches and offensive coordinators he has worked with during his career, Wells could be an ideal fit as a play-caller both working alongside Sean McDermott and for the Bills' pass-oriented scheme.
3. Zac Robinson, Rams QB Coach
Sean McVay's assistants remain hot commodities, as teams continue to look to harness some of the influence of one of the more successful offensive minds in recent memory.
Last offseason, the Los Angeles Chargers interviewed Robinson for their offensive coordinator vacancy, prior to ultimately hiring Kellen Moore. Working alongside McVay likely has shaped how Robinson views offense, and his experience could be tailor made for finding ways to create opportunities for Josh Allen to dictate via the vertical passing game and maximize the impact of James Cook, as the Rams have been able to do with their running game in recent years. Robinson is a respected leader in offensive meetings for the Rams, and the personnel afforded by the Bills' job could make Buffalo an opportunity worth moving on from McVay's staff attractive.
4. Darrell Bevell, Dolphins QB Coach
If the Bills are looking for an experienced offensive coordinator to serve in some sort of "head coach" of the offense role, there might not be a more attractive candidate than Darrell Bevell.
With nearly 28 seasons of coaching experience, Bevell also now has the added allure of working on Mike McDaniel's staff. While Bevell doesn't call plays for quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, don't be surprised if Miami's motion-heavy scheme becomes the next wave of innovation across the NFL, and Buffalo boasts the kind of talent to replicate the Dolphins' success. Not to mention, Tagovailoa has become one of the game's elite quarterbacks under Bevell's tutelage, which could inspire confidence that he can fix what seems to be ailing Allen and elevate his game to even loftier heights.
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