The year is young, but I'm willing to stake a fair amount of Monopoly money on the idea that things will not get much weirder than this in Atlanta.
Per source, Atlanta is moving assistant head coach Raheem Morris to coach WRs. Henderson replaces him on D. https://t.co/AnUXIzco16— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) January 24, 2016
In addition to coaching WRs, Raheem Morris will also assume a role alongside OC Kyle Shanahan as the Falcons passing game coordinator.— Albert Breer (@AlbertBreer) January 24, 2016
Just by trotting through Raheem's coaching history, I don't believe he's had any professional experience coaching wide receivers, or even coaching offense. On those grounds alone, this is a strange move.
The thinking here has to be that there's an assistant coach who can do the day-to-day work with wide receivers while Morris gets up to speed, and that having him as a passing game coordinator will be valuable because Morris knows how defenses think, in particular secondaries. There may be something to that, because Shanahan did appear to struggle with predictability in 2015, but this probably has more to do with Dan Quinn's trust in and regard for Morris as a coach and teacher than anything else. It's an experiment, full stop, and if he's taking an active role in planning for the passing game, it makes Shanahan's role a little awkward.
If you'll recall, Raheem has head coaching experience. He also has really good rapport with the WRs, from what I've observed.— Jeanna (@jeannathomas) January 24, 2016
I'm wary because it's such an odd, unorthodox move, and nothing in Morris's background suggests he's going to be a particularly great asset on this side of the ball. He simply doesn't have the experience coordinating and offense or coaching wide receivers that you would look for in a coach brought aboard to do both of those things, and while the Falcons have built a deep, talented staff, this still makes me question what Dan Quinn might be thinking. Stranger things have worked in the NFL, but you should view this shuffling of the staff with healthy skepticism, as you likely are, and we'll see how it works out.