The Washington Commanders and two-time Super Bowl winning coach Eric Bieniemy have agreed in principle on a contract that will make him the team’s new offensive coordinator and assistant head coach, according to multiple reports.
Bieniemy and the Commanders still have work out some of the final details of the contract, but the deal is expected to be for two years.
Once the language of the deal is set, Bieniemy will likely be formally introduced in a press conference next week.
Bieniemy was the offensive coordinator with the Kansas City Chiefs during the past five seasons, but he did not have play-calling duties. Instead, he largely focused on game planning and play design while head coach Andy Reid called plays during games.
In Washington, Bieniemy would likely be given full autonomy when it comes to the offensive philosophy and would call the plays.
Bieniemy replaces Scott Turner, who was fired in January after three seasons at the helm. Washington’s offense during that span was mostly underwhelming and never finished a season ranked higher than 20th in yards. Last season, the Commanders ended the year in the No. 26 spot in points.
Ron Rivera enters his fourth season as Washington’s head coach. He has complied a 22-27-1 record so far, but he led the Commanders to a NFC East title in 2020.
Rivera and the Commanders will likely be under pressure to have a winning season, especially as the franchise remains in an unstable state, and embattled owner Dan Snyder explores a possible sale.
Despite interviewing for multiple head coaching potions over the past several years, Bieniemy has failed to land a job. Some have attributed his lack of in-game play-calling experience as a detriment to his head coaching candidacy.
“It’s so past-deserved,” Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes said before the Super Bowl. “He’s done everything the right way. He’s been a part of this offense and this team for so long, holds everybody accountable, is creative in making up plays for us. I don’t know why he hasn’t been hired, but it’s been great for us.”
Bieniemy would have needed a contract extension to remain in Kansas City, as his deal came to an end after this past season.
“Eric Bieniemy has been tremendous for us, and I think he’s tremendous for the National Football League,” Reid told reporters on Monday. “I’m hoping he has an opportunity to go somewhere and do his thing, where he can run the show and be Eric Bieniemy.”
Bieniemy has extensive NFL coaching experience, having served as the Chiefs running back from 2013 through 2017. He was also the Vikings’ runningbacks coach.
Bieniemy also had a long playing career. He spent 10 seasons with the Chargers, Bengals and Eagles.