The Upcoming Bye Week Will Have Bob Quinn Thinking About the Future of This Team
Detroit lost their fourth game of the year on Sunday and many people were pointing the finger of blame at Jim Caldwell. He didn’t challenge a possible fumble that could have turned the game around and he called for an onside kick with just under three minutes left in the game. His poor coaching habits showed up again on Sunday and this leaves Bob Quinn with a tough choice in the next two weeks.
Coaching Option One: Keeping Caldwell To Finish The Season
Jim Caldwell’s time in Detroit is up. The chances that he lasts the entire season are slim, but the first option is to at least let him finish his final year and Bob Quinn can evaluate him fully.
Firing a coach mid-season assumes you are accepting that the season is lost and you are looking towards the future. Quinn might not want to do that in his first year, even if he knows he won’t be keeping Caldwell after the season is done. Caldwell has respect from the players in the locker room, so players aren’t begging for him to get canned. He could still possibly turn this season around and possibly get Detroit into the playoffs.
While winning a playoff game could have Quinn rethink about getting rid of Caldwell, it might not save his job. His only chance for sure to be back in 2017 is if he wins the Super Bowl, which is unlikely.
Coaching Option Two: Fire Caldwell After the Bye and Promote Teryl Austin to Head Coach
This is one way to kill two birds with one stone. Teryl Austin is turning into the Joe Lombardi of the defense. Instead of adjusting his style of defense, he is trying to fit players into his scheme. This isn’t the smartest tactic, but that seems to be what Austin is doing this year.
Fans want Austin to be fired, but not just yet. What Quinn could do if he decides within the next week or two that Caldwell won’t be able to lift this team into the playoffs, is to fire Caldwell and promote a coordinator to the head coaching spot. Reports say that the Lions organization want Jim Bob Cooter to stay on the coaching staff, so giving him the interim head coaching gig would be suicide.
This leaves Teryl Austin getting promoted. This way, we give Austin a chance to prove himself. Most interim coaches end up being fired and replaced with someone else. Teryl Austin was considered a possible head coaching candidate the past three years and now he would have his chance to prove he can be a head coach. If he doesn’t work out, then we can cut him out.
The way this season looks Austin and Caldwell won’t last into 2017, so either option is a good one. We can ride on Caldwell into the off-season and restart from square one. Alternatively Quinn could fire him within the next two weeks, try out Austin to see if he can turn something around and if he can then we could consider him in 2017, but if not we let him go and look for a new head coach.