Detroit Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson has informed both the Seattle Seahawks and Washington Commanders that he will remain with the organization, per NFL Insider Tom Pelissero. He had emerged as a top candidate for both head coaching vacancies, but has opted to remain with the Lions in their pursuit of making the Super Bowl next season.
Johnson has emerged as one of the top rising assistant coaches in the entire league over the past few season, getting promoted to Lions OC in 2022. The team had one of the top offenses in the NFL during their breakout campaign this year, racking up 6,712 yards on 5.9 yards per play with 30 passing touchdowns and 27 rushing touchdowns. The Jared Goff-led offense was up 24-7 in the NFC Championship Game and on the doorstep of a berth in Super Bowl 58 before a second-half collapse ended those dreams. Given that most of the Lions’ weapons will be back next year, it’s understandable why he’d want to take another crack at getting this group over the hump.
Now that Johnson has taken himself out of the running, the Commanders and Seahawks remain the only two franchises still in search of a head coach. Washington could go the defensive route as it is giving a second interview to Lions DC Aaron Glenn, as well as Cowboys DC Dan Quinn. Meanwhile, with Johnson off the table, Seattle appears to be targeting Ravens DC Mike Macdonald as its top candidate.