NFL Rumors: CFB coaches who might come to NFL, Broncos received NFLPA legal threats over Russ, Eberflus future

  • Matt Eberflus is expected to stay with Bears in 2024
  • Broncos were threatened with legal actions due handling of Russell Wilson
  • Several CFB coaches are expected to draw NFL interest

Chip Kelly, UCLA Bruins football
Chip Kelly, UCLA Bruins football / Jason Parkhurst-USA TODAY Sports
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NFL Rumors: Several college football coaches are on the NFL radar

As both the college and professional football seasons wind down, the coaching market is starting to heat up. Jay Glazer recently went on FOX NFL Sunday to discuss the potential for college coaches to make the NFL leap. Several candidates have emerged, including UCLA's Chip Kelly, Arizona's Jedd Fisch, and USC assistant Kliff Kingsbury.

"This is the time of the year that we started looking at these candidates. Last night Detroit had one, Ben Johnson, he’s really the top guy out there for offensive coaches. It’s gonna be a slew of defensive coaches. What I’m being told is the defensive coaches are starting to pick around and make some calls from guys with college and pro experience."

As NFL teams continue to hammer the market for defensive-minded head coaches, those coaches are then looking to bring in bright, inventive minds to captain their offense. Ben Johnson is the example cited by Glazer — the créme de la créme for NFL offensive coordinators. Johnson, however, is 37 years old and has spent virtually his entire coaching career in the pros. Chip Kelly and Kliff Kingsbury are both former NFL head coaches with spotty track records at best. Fisch is the closest comparison. He took the Arizona job in 2021 and led the Wildcats to an impressive 10-3 record in 2023. His last NFL job was as the Patriots' QB coach in 2020.

There has also been growing buzz surrounding Jim Harbaugh's potential exodus at Michigan. So, plan to keep one eye on the college football pool at all times. The leap from CFB to NFL head coach is notoriously tricky, but it is intriguing to consider the possibility of Power Five head coaches like Kelly or Fisch leaving their posts for assistant gigs in the NFL. It could be a pathway back to the NFL head coaching chair for Kelly, or a chance to Fisch to take one more step up the ladder. That said, there's significant risk involved and Power Five head coaching gigs — especially high-profile jobs like UCLA or Arizona — aren't easy to come by.

Kelly is the most established name mentioned. He has multiple NFL head coaching stops under his belt. He has been around the proverbial block a few times. Long lauded for his bold offensive strategy, the public perception of Kelly has soured in recent years. One has to imagine he's not the ideal candidate for a lot of fanbases. Fisch, on the other hand, might have more to offer by way of his perceived upside as a relative unknown.

Next. 3 long-term Broncos replacements for Russell Wilson. 3 long-term Broncos replacements for Russell Wilson. dark