The Cincinnati Bengals were in danger of losing both coordinators this offseason, but they managed to keep both offensive coordinator Brian Callahan and defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo.
Callahan was in the mix for the Indianapolis Colts head coach job while Anarumo was a finalist for the Arizona Cardinals head coach job.
The Cardinals have requested permission to interview Bengals WR Troy Walters for their offensive coordinator position, per league source.
— Jonathan Jones (@jjones9) February 17, 2023
The Colts ended up hiring Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen and the Cardinals hired Philly defensive coordinator Jonathan Gannon. Philadelphia essentially lived Cincinnati’s nightmare. The Bengals, however, aren’t totally out of the woods yet when it comes to keeping their coaching staff together.
On Friday, Jonathan Jones, an NFL reporter for CBS Sports, reported that the Cardinals requested permission to interview Cincy wide receivers coach Troy Walters for their offensive coordinator job.
Walters, who has been on the Bengals’ staff since 2020, doesn’t have any NFL offensive coordinator experience. His only previous offensive coordinator experience came at Nebraska in 2018/19 and at UCF in 2016/17.
Walters reportedly didn’t call plays at either program (he worked under Scott Frost, who called plays). If the Cardinals hire Walters to run their offense — and it would be an attractive job for him since the offense would be his baby with Gannon being a defensive-minded head coach — the Bengals have an obvious replacement for him.
Cincinnati could simply promote assistant wide receivers coach Brad Kragthorpe to wide receivers coach if Walters leaves. Kragthorpe has been with the Bengals since 2019. And he’s known Joe Burrow and Ja’Marr Chase even longer as he was at LSU in 2018.
Losing Walters wouldn’t be ideal, but at least the Bengals have a suitable replacement if it happens.