The Washington Redskins had the first change to their coaching staff Wednesday, when the Atlanta Falcons announced they have hired Ben Kotwica as their new special teams coordinator. Kotwica held the same position with the Redskins the past five seasons, but was given permission to speak with other teams.
The Redskins hadn’t made any changes to their coaching staff before losing Kotwica, according to a person with knowledge of the situation, despite previous reports to the contrary.
Coach Jay Gruden was still evaluating his assistants as of Wednesday morning and deciding what changes to make to his staff after the team finished 7-9, including a 1-6 stretch in the final seven games. The entire process, starting with the team’s decision to retain Gruden, has lingered as teams around the league with head-coaching vacancies have started to announce hires and flesh out their 2019 coaching staffs.
Reports surfaced this week that the Redskins sat down with former New York Jets coach Todd Bowles and were interested in Denver Broncos defensive coordinator Joe Woods as a defensive backs coach, but neither received an official offer. Bowles was expected to take the defensive coordinator position with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after Bruce Arians was hired Tuesday as head coach, but the Chicago Bears' coordinator position is now reportedly a possibility for Bowles after Vic Fangio was hired by the Broncos as their head coach Wednesday afternoon.
The Falcons shook up their staff of assistants under Coach Dan Quinn after finishing 7-9 and missing the playoffs for the first time since 2015. The team hired Dirk Koetter as offensive coordinator and Mike Mularkey to coach tight ends.
There are expected to be coaching changes on the defensive side of the ball for the Redskins, but coordinator Greg Manusky and the rest of the assistants remain in place. There were reports that defensive backs coach Torrian Gray had been fired Tuesday, but the person with knowledge of the situation, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss personnel matters, said that has not happened.
There has been a belief since the end of the season that offensive line coach Bill Callahan could move on, that hasn’t taken place yet. Callahan is expected to draw interest from teams that could offer a promotion for the former Oakland Raiders head coach.
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