This could change in a hurry, but new Orleans Saints co-defensive coordinator and secondary coach Kris Richard wasn’t among the candidates the Carolina Panthers are discussing for their open defensive coordinator job. CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson reports that new Panthers head coach Frank Reich and owner David Tepper have differing opinions on who they should pursue for that vacancy, with Reich wanting to bring Gus Bradley with him from the Indianapolis Colts while Tepper likes Marquand Manuel.
Richard received an interview request for this job early in January, but that was before Carolina hired Reich. And he could still emerge as a candidate if neither of these guys are an option. Bradley is still under contract with the Colts and Manuel has been linked to the Houston Texans head coach favorite DeMeco Ryans. If the Panthers strike out there, Richard makes a lot of sense. He worked with Bradley on the Seattle Seahawks and has run similar systems in the past with the Dallas Cowboys.
So there’s still a chance Richard leaves New Orleans this offseason, even if it doesn’t seem very likely right now. He doesn’t call plays with the Saints (Dennis Allen has held onto that responsibility after being promoted to head coach) but he would get that opportunity in Carolina or on another staff around the league. It’s something to watch out for in the days ahead, but you have to hope the Saints don’t lose both of their co-defensive coordinators to division rivals after the Atlanta Falcons hired Ryan Nielsen.