The mixed reports on Raheem Morris continue today as the Atlanta Falcons have reportedly asked for, and been granted permission from the Washington Redskins to interview Morris for an unspecified job on their coaching staff. Current Seattle Seahawks Defensive Coordinator Dan Quinn has long been expected to be the new head coach for the Falcons, and they have already started forming some of his staff. Former Redskins Offensive Coordinator Kyle Shanahan is expected to join the Falcons in the same role. Morris and Shanahan obviously coached together in Washington during Kyle's last two years.
Morris and Quinn also have previous coaching experience together. Quinn was the DL coach at Hofstra University from 1996-2000 and he also served as their DC in 2000. Raheem Morris was a player under Quinn, and then served as a graduate assistant at Hofstra in 1998, and was then Quinn's defensive backs coach in 2000. Morris stayed in that role for one more year before moving up to the NFL and getting a defensive quality control job with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Hofstra connections are very real.
The story from ESPN Chicago reporter Michael C. Wright was that the Redskins were intent on keeping Raheem Morris, and that could have played a part in Vic Fangio choosing the Chicago Bears Defensive Coordinator job over the Redskins. That has been widely labeled false by sources close to Fangio. The Redskins quickly moved on to their next choice and hired former San Diego Chargers LB coach Joe Barry.
Barry reportedly wants to keep Morris on his staff, but they are willing to let Morris interview for a bigger opportunity with the Falcons. Raheem Morris interviewed for the Giants DC job, and also for the Redskins DC job this year. Mike Nolan is currently the Falcons DC, but he will be replaced when Quinn is hired. Seahawks DBs coach Kris Richard would be a candidate for Quinn to bring with him as a DC, but if the Seahawks plan on promoting him to DC, he will have to look elsewhere. Will Raheem Morris get the job and leave Washington this year?
Redskins have granted Atlanta permission to interview Raheem Morris for a job on the coaching staff. (@MikeJonesWaPo reported the request).— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) January 24, 2015
Joe Barry had interest in keeping Morris as DBs coach, but it remained uncertain because of chance for larger role w other teams.— Mike Jones (@MikeJonesWaPo) January 24, 2015
[UPDATE #1: 12:00 PM 1/24/15]: Mike Jones says Morris very likely to Atlanta as a "hybrid assistant-defensive coordinator" with Dan Quinn calling plays.
Morris is scheduled to interview with the Falcons some time this week for a hybrid assistant-defensive coordinator position under new Coach Dan Quinn, two sources said. But another person familiar with the plans said that meeting is basically a formality.
Quinn, who will coach in the Super Bowl as defensive coordinator of the Seattle Seahawks before fully assuming his new job, is expected to continue to call the defensive plays as head coach in Atlanta. But Morris will have a senior assistant position that will feature more responsibilities than defensive backs, according to the person, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak for the parties involved.
[UPDATE #2: 5:58 PM 1/25/15]: Mike Jones updated Morris potential position to assistant head coach/passing game coordinator.
[UPDATE #3: 8:44 PM 1/25/15]: Dan Quinn expected to bring an assistant from Seattle to be his DC, Morris will have different role.
While Raheem Morris to Atlanta is close to official, sources say the plan is still for Dan Quinn to hire a current Seahawk assistant as DC— Dianna Marie Russini (@NBCdianna) January 26, 2015