List Of Candidates To Replace Joe Barry

The Packers defense needs a fresh perspective. We Examine Potential Joe Barry Replacing Candidates Again Today

Head coach of the Green Bay Packers Matt LaFleur is unable to ignore it any longer. It’s long past time for the Packers to get a new defensive coordinator in lieu of Joe Barry. There are numerous first-round draft selections on the defense. But despite the inflow of elite players, the defense is still not up to par. The Packers defense needs a fresh perspective at the top. Once again, we examine potential successors to Joe Barry today.

5 Candidates to Replace Joe Barry

Who to replace Joe Barry with isn’t the only question the Packers organization faces this offseason. President Mark Murphy and general manager Brian Gutekunst have to ask themselves if they trust Matt LaFleur to hire Joe Barry’s replacement. Since taking over as the Packers head coach, LaFleur has done a terrible job hiring assistant coaches. Do the Packers truly trust him to make the right hire this time?

The hiring of Joe Barry as the defensive coordinator has been the biggest mistake of LaFleur’s coaching career with the Packers. But it isn’t the only mistake LaFleur has made when it comes to hiring an assistant. When LaFleur was named head coach before the 2019 season, he chose to keep Mike Pettine as his defensive coordinator. The decision didn’t work out well and LaFleur parted ways with the coach after the 2020 season.

Then, of course, there was LaFleur’s total botching of the special teams coordinator. First, he hired Pettine’s buddy Shawn Mennenga, who turned out not to be the answer. When he finally decided to replace Mennenga, he chose to promote Maurice Drayton. He did this even knowing that Drayton was the assistant under two failed special teams coordinators (Mennenga and former coordinator Ron Zook). Drayton’s tenure was a complete dumpster fire.

Now, LaFleur will face arguably the biggest decision in his Packers head coaching tenure. This hire might decide LaFleur’s future with the Packers, and it’s a decision that LaFleur must get right.

Ejiro Evero, Defensive Coordinator

When LaFleur hired Joe Barry as the Packers defensive coordinator in 2021, Evero was one of the finalists for the job. LaFleur ought to be kicking himself for not hiring Evero. In 2022, Evero assumed the role of defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos. Although Nathaniel Hackett was a failure with the Broncos, Evero did not have the same fate. During his one season in Denver, he oversaw a very respectable defense. Prior to this season, he performed well enough to be given the same role with the Carolina Panthers.

With Panthers head coach Frank Reich already fired, there is a good chance that Evero will once again be in search of a new job this off-season. While the Panthers defense has had some struggles, Evero has done more with less. At only 42 years of age, and having experience calling an NFL defense, he should be at the top of LaFleur’s list.

Chris Hewitt, Pass Game Coordinator/Defensive Backs Coach

It’s a head-scratcher that Chris Hewitt hasn’t yet landed a coordinator position before now. The Baltimore Ravens have fielded some of the best defenses in the NFL and Hewitt has been a big part of that. He has been a part of the Ravens coaching staff since 2012.

Hewitt has a connection with the current Packers director-football operations Milt Hendrickson. From 2005-2018 Hendrickson spent time in the Ravens front office. He knows the type of coach Hewitt is and if Hendrickson, who is Gutekunst’s right-hand man, recommends Hewitt, it would go a long way.

Anthony Weaver, Associate Head Coach/Defensive Line

There is a reason that Anthony Weaver is the second candidate from the Ravens

NFL defenses, and head coach John Harbaugh of the Ravens is likely to lose some of his coaches to promotions this summer.

Like Hewitt, Weaver was once an NFL player. Following his playing career, Weaver entered the coaching field. He has assisted five different NFL clubs. Weaver was the Houston Texans’ defensive coordinator in 2020. He became a member of the Ravens staff in 2022, and since then, he has performed admirably with the defensive line.

. The Ravens have one of the best defenses in the NFL and there is a good chance that Ravens head coach John Harbaugh will see some of his assistants leave for promotions this offseason.

Weaver, similar to Hewitt, is a former NFL player. Once his playing career concluded, Weaver jumped into coaching. He has been an assistant for five NFL teams. In 2020, Weaver was the defensive coordinator for the Houston Texans. He joined the Ravens staff in 2022 and has done a very good job with the Ravens defensive line.

Because of the Ravens defensive success this season, coordinator Mike MacDonald might be in line to land a head coaching gig. If that happens, Weaver or Hewitt might be promoted to replace MacDonald. Leaving one of them off LaFleur’s possible list.

Daniel Bullocks, Safeties Coach

Hiring assistant coaches is largely based on your contacts and network of acquaintances. Matt LaFleur is acquainted with Kyle Shanahan, the head coach of the San Francisco 49ers. Thus, it would be simple to make the connection that LaFleur might consider looking to Shanahan’s staff to take Joe Barry’s post.

Another former NFL player, Daniel Bullocks, has been employed by Shanahan in San Francisco since 2017. Prior to being elevated to the position of safeties coach, which he presently occupies, he worked as an assistant defensive backs coach. The

49ers have fielded a very good defense under Shanahan, so hiring one of his assistants makes sense. Unlike Weaver, Bullocks has never been an NFL defensive coordinator. However, Joe Barry had defensive coordinating experience and he has been a major failure. Hiring an up-and-comer might be what the Packers need on defense.

Joe Whitt Jr., Secondary Coach/Pass Game Coordinator

Joe Whitt Jr. is a familiar name to Packers fans. He was on the Packers coaching staff from 2009-2018. He coached Hall of Fame player Charles Woodson during Woodson’s tenure and Woodson has given Whitt credit for some of his success.

Whitt Jr. is another assistant who should be a candidate to be an NFL defensive coordinator. Similar to the two Ravens assistants, Whitt Jr. might earn a promotion this off-season if current Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn gets another NFL head coaching job.

(Dis)Honorable Mentions – Potential Joe Barry Replacements

A handful of names were left off of our list. Jim Leonhard, a senior analyst at the University of Illinois and a former defensive coordinator at the University of Wisconsin, is the first. With the Packers parting company with Pettine, there were rumors that Leonhard was LaFleur’s first option. Because of his devotion to Wisconsin, he declined it. Regretfully, Chris McIntosh, the athletic director of Wisconsin, did not demonstrate the same devotion when he passed up Leonard for the head coaching post of the Badgers, which was Leonard’s rightful place. It is possible that he is not interested in the defensive coordinator post with the Packers because he is reportedly looking to become a college head coach. Add him to this list if he’s interested in taking Joe Barry’s place.

There is no reason that former Los Angeles Chargers head coach Brandon Staley should be on this list. Not only was he a massive failure as a head coach, but he called the Chargers defense this season and did a horrible job. Just because he fetched Vic Fangio’s coffee while both worked for the Los Angeles Rams does that make him a viable candidate. If LaFleur were to hire him, he should be immediately placed on the hot seat.

There is a good reason no current Packers assistant is on this list. None of the current Packers defensive assistants deserve to be on this list. If LaFleur finally grows a spine and fires Barry, he should part ways with the whole defensive staff and start over. The Packers need a new look on defense and the best way to do so would be to start from scratch.

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