Packers to Hire Matt LaFleur as Next Head Coach
The Packers intend to hire Titans offensive coordinator Matt LaFleur as their next head coach, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
“You look at Matt LaFleur and where he’s been, it seems like successful quarterback play follows him,” Rams head coach Sean McVay said last season. “Matt LaFleur's a great coach. We're fortunate that he's here and I think he's done a great job with our guys and certainly his time in Atlanta—they had a lot of success as well.”
What we know about Matt LaFleur
After five years in the college ranks, LaFleur landed his first job in the NFL in 2008, serving as the Houston Texans’ offensive quality control coach under head coach Gary Kubiak. That job sparked a decade-long meteoric rise that saw LaFleur pair with some of the biggest young names in coaching.
After two years in Houston, LaFleur traveled to Washington, where he joined Mike Shanahan’s Redskins staff as a quarterbacks coach. Readers familiar with the career arcs of the two trendiest names in coaching will already know what happened, but while with the Redskins, LaFleur was able to work closely with both Kyle Shanahan and Sean McVay.
LaFleur served through the elder Shanahan’s entire tenure in Washington, and after the breakdown of that regime, he spent the 2014 season at Notre Dame while quarterback DeShone Kizer was redshirted.
A year later LaFleur was back in the NFL, rejoining Kyle Shanahan in Atlanta. As quarterbacks coach, he helped Matt Ryan to two of the most productive years of his career, including an MVP campaign in 2016.
After the Falcons famously blew their 28-3 lead to the Patriots in the Super Bowl, LaFleur reconnected with a second coaching colleague, joining Sean McVay’s staff in Los Angeles as McVay’s offensive coordinator. He and McVay worked together to produce the league’s top scoring offense in 2017, the second consecutive year in which LaFleur was part of the league’s scoring leader.
In 2018, LaFleur served as the offensive coordinator for the Tennessee Titans after first interviewing for their head coaching job. The results haven’t been quite as pretty as his last two stops. The Titans finished 27th in the league in offense, and LaFleur was criticized for running the ball too often on early downs.
What’s next for Matt LaFleur and the Packers?
On Sunday in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Packers reporter Tom Silverstein insisted that LaFleur would need to have “knocked [Murphy and Gutekunst’s] socks off in the interview” to have a shot at the job. It appears he has at least done just that, given how quickly the Packers moved.
LaFleur will also keep defensive coordinator Mike Pettine and the defensive coaching staff. In doing so, the Packers avoid having three defensive coordinators over three seasons for the first time since the 2004-2006 seasons.
The Packers and LaFleur still need to finalize a contract, but the hard work of assembling his staff of assistants will begin immediately. Green Bay is the first of the eight teams looking for a head coach to hire one, giving them the first crack at assistants.
As we’ve mentioned throughout the process, it’s likely Green Bay may hire one of the coaches they’ve interviewed as a coordinator or associate head coach to pair with LaFleur.