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Land Commanders Kansas City Offensive Coordinator Bieniemy: Sources – NBC4 Washington

The Commanders have made their biggest move of the offseason, and it’s not selling the franchise.

Sources say Washington will soon set Eric Bieniemy as the new offensive coordinator and play caller. Fresh off a second Super Bowl win in Kansas City, Bieniemy may be the hottest name in the NFL following their comeback championship win over the Eagles.

In the minutes after the game, Chiefs coach Andy Reid said Bieniemy was “phenomenal” as he led Kansas City to a comeback victory. NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes, the Kansas City star quarterback, gushed about Bieniemy in the locker room after the game, explaining that the coach makes the quarterback a better player every day, challenging and demanding greatness.

And somehow, somehow, Ron Rivera just landed Bieniemy in Ashburn, Virginia.

In an offseason where selling the franchise remains the biggest question mark, Rivera may not have many options for a big hit. With ownership uncertain, it is hard to imagine Captains being major players in free agency or even the major trades, so a hire of big name coaches could be the best.

It’s an easy statement to suggest that Bieniemy is just as good.

Since Bieniemy took over as Chiefs offensive coordinator in 2018, Kansas City has appeared in three Super Bowls, won two and represented the offense with the most yardage in the NFL in 2018, 2020 and 2022. With Bieniemy as offensive coordinator, the Chiefs offense has never ranked lower than 6th in the NFL in runs scored and has twice finished as the highest scoring NFL offense (2018, 2022).

Perhaps more impressively, Kansas City finished with the best offense in the NFL last season and that came after trading All Pro wide receiver Tyreek Hill. The Chiefs had to overhaul their offense, requiring more lineups and more creativity, to match Mahomes and All Pro tight end Travis Kelce.

Let’s not pretend Bieniemy failed to work with elite talent in Kansas City, especially Mahomes and Kelce and an offensive genius like Reid, but let’s not pretend Bieniemy played no part.

Someone will ask, if Bieniemy is so good, why come to Washington?

While some skepticism might be warranted, consider this: In Kansas City most of the credit and accolades for fireworks offense go to Reid and Mahomes. Or Kelce. Or Hill when he was there.

Bieniemy was rarely talked about for his contributions to a juggernaut offensive attack. While internally Mahomes and Reid credited the man they call “EB,” the outside world saw a different picture.

Bieniemy interviewed for head coaching jobs, but never received offers. There are plenty of reasons to raise eyebrows, but in the end maybe he needs to prove his prowess away from the future Hall of Fame Reid and Mahomes.

In Washington, EB has just that opportunity.

Despite a strong group of wideouts in Terry McLaurin, Jahan Dotson and Curtis Samuel and solid running backs in Brian Robinson and Antonio Gibson, Washington hasn’t finished higher than 20th in yards gained since 2017. That’s five straight seasons solidly in the bottom half of the league offensively, and some of those were in the last five.

Bieniemy takes over on a Commanders offense needing an offensive line overhaul and with plans to start second year QB Sam Howell with 11 career NFL completions. Mahomes usually does it in quarter.

Howell has talent, but he’s also slipped to the fifth round of the 2022 NFL Draft. There are questions about his ability to handle professional defenses, although in limited work in Week 18, Howell looked like an encouraging prospect.

If Bieniemy can make things work in Washington, or really only show incremental improvement, that could be the sign to the rest of the league that he deserves the head coaching job. Adding the tenuous future for engineering staff as a whole with commanders could provide an accelerated opportunity.

Add in that Bieniemy gets a bigger caseload — lead game caller, associate head coach — as well as some control in the offensive staff, and even skeptics can start to understand why he wanted the gig.

Olympic divers are taught from a young age not to splash. Show control.

For Ron Rivera, whether he wants to impress or not, there may not be many coming until ownership stabilizes.

Bieniemy’s hiring could be the commanders’ cannonball dive of the 2023 offseason.

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