With the offseason officially under way, the Atlanta Falcons are set to interview Eric Bieniemy, offensive coordinator of the Kansas City Chiefs, and Robert Saleh, defensive coordinator of the San Francisco 49ers, according to Ian Rapoport.
The Falcons have previously interviewed interim head coach Raheem Morris who led the Falcons to a 4-7 record after taking over for Dan Quinn in October.
Bieniemy and Saleh would represent a fresh start for the Falcons rather than a promotion from within, something that seems to be needed after Atlanta struggled the past two seasons and have been on a downward trend since 28-3.
The last two hires for the Falcons in Mike Smith and Dan Quinn have both been from the defensive side of the ball, ironic considering former General Manager Thomas Dimitroff’s penchant for building through offensive skill players.
I think this puts Bieniemy in a good position to differentiate himself from past hires and usher in a fresh start. Bieniemy’s Chiefs offense is No. 1 in the NFL and the only team over 400 yards per game. Patrick Mahomes is considered one of the game’s brightest stars right now, and the Falcons have a high draft pick and a need to rebuild.
Seeing Bieniemy come in with a young, local quarterback like Ohio State’s Justin Fields to replicate what is happening with Mahomes and the Chiefs is going to be a tantalizing prospect for Arthur Blank and the Falcons.
Robert Saleh has his 49ers fifth in the NFL in total defense, fourth in passing defense, and seventh in rushing defense (the Falcons finished 29th, 32nd, and sixth respectively).
The Falcons aren’t the only team interested in the pair of coordinators. According to Albert Breer, The Lions are planning on interviewing Bieniemy and Saleh Monday as well.