Detroit Lions fans have likely been on pins and needles wondering about the future of star defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn, and a new tidbit from someone who could be plugged into the search could be shedding new light on how things figure to go.
Glenn seems to be a rising star in the coaching profession, but the Lions could have him stick with the team for another year at least. The Denver Broncos interviewed Glenn for their head coaching job recently, but he might not be one of the leaders in the clubhouse to be picked for the role.
The latest Lions news straight to your inbox! Join the Heavy on Lions newsletter here!
That’s according to Woody Paige of the Denver Gazette. Paige wrote on Twitter Wednesday, January 19 that Glenn might not be a leader for the Broncos’ head coach search. That title could belong to Dan Quinn and Nathaniel Hackett, a pair of other assistants who have been involved in the team’s interview process.
“Quinn and Moore interviewed extremely well as we would expect. Aaron Glenn will be a head coach, but not yet. Same for Mayo. Getsy impressive, but not ready. Quinn and Hackett, Hackett and Quinn still leaders. Bieniemy, Callahan and O’Connell still have real chance,” Paige wrote in the tweet.
That would seem to hint that Glenn might not be getting the job in Denver, which would mean he would be returning to the Lions. Glenn has not been interviewed for a head coaching job anywhere else so far, so if he doesn’t end up a finalist in Denver, that would mean the Lions could breathe a bit easier about him coming back.
Continuity is important for the Lions and their young staff, and keeping Glenn might well represent a big early offseason win for Detroit in 2022 given how good he has been thus far with the team already.
Glenn Solid for Lions’ Defense During 2021-22 Season
Lions fans are probably more than a bit worried about losing Glenn considering what he did for the team’s defense in 2021. The team struggled with injuries and inconsistency all year and yet they managed to improve down the stretch and find a way to scratch out some huge wins. Better than that, Glenn showed his chops as a defensive coordinator with several quality game plans, scheming to keep the likes of Lamar Jackson, Kyler Murray and even the high-powered Los Angeles Rams’ offense in check.
Defensively, the numbers weren’t great optically for the Lions given the team was 29th in yards allowed (379.8 per-game), 24th in pass defense (31 touchdowns) and 29th in run defense (135 yards per-game), but considering what happened to the unit and what Glenn was able to push through, Detroit should be thrilled to have him. The team saw young defenders like Tracy Walker and Amani Oruwariye have career years, while rookies like Jerry Jacobs and AJ Parker emerged out of nowhere. All of this was good news amid the losses of several key players like Jeff Okudah, Romeo Okwara and Trey Flowers to season-ending injuries.
All of this is a major credit to Glenn and his chops as a coach and a first-year defensive coordinator.
Glenn’s Career Biography & Highlights
At 49, Glenn took his time to get into the coaching ranks given his lengthy career in the NFL. After being a first-round pick of the New York Jets in 1994 out of Texas A&M, Glenn played eight years in New York before heading to his hometown Houston Texans from 2002-2004. He played for the Dallas Cowboys from 2005-2006, then finished his career with the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2007 and the New Orleans Saints in 2008. Glenn took some time off before jumping into his second career, where he started as a personnel scout with the Jets in 2012 and 2013, then advanced to coaching defensive backs with the Cleveland Browns in 2014 and 2015 before jumping to Sean Payton’s staff in 2016.
One of the most productive and durable players in his era during his time in the league, Glenn finished his career with 41 interceptions, 8 touchdowns and 634 total tackles. Here’s a look at some of his greatest hits in the league:
Glenn is thought to be head coaching material one day soon, and that might only be more of the case if he can turn around a woeful Detroit defense continuing next year. If he can keep doing well, he might be primed for even more jobs in the future.