When offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy left the Kansas City Chiefs to become the Washington Commanders’ new offensive coordinator, it came as a surprise to a lot of folks.
Leaving Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid to work with an offense in Washington that has a lot of question marks could be construed as a puzzling move.
The immediate explanation offered by NFL analysts was that Bieniemy’s decision to go to Washington was rooted in his desire to be a head coach.
The idea is that Bieniemy can “prove himself” away from Reid and get offered a head coaching job next offseason.
Bieniemy, however, suggested on Thursday that a future head coaching job isn’t why he left Kansas City.
Instead, Bieniemy told reporters that he essentially didn’t want to become complacent with the Chiefs. Bieniemy has been on Reid’s staff since 2013, so that’s certainly understandable.
LIVE: Asst. Head Coach/Offensive Coordinator Eric Bieniemy’s introductory press conference https://t.co/5b71PExM4c
— Washington Commanders (@Commanders) February 23, 2023
“It’s been 10 years, I was blessed to have that opportunity,” said Bieniemy. “But one thing in this profession that you learn is that comfort is the enemy of progress.”
“The past two weeks have been physically and emotionally exhausting,” added Bieniemy. “I knew it was time to move on, so many different waves of emotions. I knew what I wanted to do, this is why I’m here.”
When it comes to being a head coach, Bieniemy said that’s the furthest thing from his mind right now.
“Right now I’m the offensive coordinator of the Washington Commanders,” explained Bieniemy. “Being a head coach, if that’s to happen it will take care of itself. We’ve had a great deal of success. We went to five straight AFC Championship Games, three out of four Super Bowls, two out of those we won. Being a head coach, it hasn’t happened, it’s not anything that’s going to impact me moving forward because the only thing I need to be concerned with is what’s important today.”
Some might question in Bieniemy is being genuine with his statements, but I 100 percent believe he is.
Bieniemy is right — it’s easy to get comfortable when you’re in the same place for a decade.
Moving to Washington will take him out of his comfort zone and allow him to see the game from a different vantage point. It will also allow him to do some things on offense that maybe he couldn’t do in Kansas City.
Sometimes it’s just time to move on. And for Bieniemy, that time was now. He’s accomplished all he can accomplish with the Chiefs. Now it’s time for a new challenge in Washington.