32. Dan Campbell, Detroit Lions
After slogging to a 4-7 start, the Lions cut ties with coach Matt Patricia (and GM Bob Quinn). It was a fitting end to Patricia’s tenure as news broke following back-to-back blowout losses to the Texans and Panthers. Under their former head coach, the Lions went 13-29-1 and were among one of the worst defensive units in the league (supposedly Patricia’s specialty). Detroit fans are still reeling from the fact that Patricia’s hiring came at the cost of Jim Caldwell’s job — who finished above .500 in three of the four seasons as the Lions’ coach.
Detroit dipped into its pool of alumni naming former tight end Dan Campbell as the team’s new head coach. Campbell is an intense individual whose introductory press conference featured some colorful language (the biting of kneecaps may have been mentioned). Campbell served as both the tight ends coach and assistant head coach for Sean Payton in New Orleans for the past five seasons.
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