New Orleans Saints co-defensive coordinator Ryan Nielsen will interview for the Minnesota Vikings’ vacant defensive coordinator job. This will be Nielsen’s second interview. He will also interview for the Atlanta Falcons defensive coordinator position.
Vikings have requested to interview Saints’ co-DC Ryan Nielsen for Minnesota’s vacant defensive coordinator job.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) January 22, 2023
Nielsen also expected to interview with the Falcons for the same role.
Nielsen has been one of the most important defensive assistants and helped coach one of the league’s best defensive lines the past few years. This is the risk the Saints took by naming two coaches to a coordinator position. They can take interviews for other teams for the same position because it is considered a promotion and not a horizontal move.
The Saints' other co-defensive coordinator Kris Richard received calls last offseason to interview for a defensive coordinator position and he has again this offseason. Richard is scheduled to interview with the Carolina Panthers.
The #Panthers requested permission to speak with #Saints defensive backs coach Kris Richard for a possible defensive coordinator job, source said. They are conducting HC interviews and DC interviews concurrently. Richard likely will get others.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 16, 2023
The Saints could potentially lose both of their co-defensive coordinators in the same offseason, or they could also retain both, if not given the job. Don’t expect many coaching hires to become official until Sean Payton decides on his future. He will be the first big domino to fall. If he does return, he may try and bring some of the current Saints staff with him.