Seattle Seahawks defensive coordinator Kris Richard has seen his defense grow vulnerable since the loss of All-Pro safety Earl Thomas to a broken leg, but that won’t stop the Buffalo Bills from finding out if he’s the man to replace Rex Ryan. A report from Mike Garafalo on Friday says that the Bills have asked to interview Richard about their head coaching vacancy, and it’s expected to take place following the Seahawks’ wild card game against the Detroit Lions on Saturday.
Bills have requested permission to interview Seahawks DC Kris Richard and that's expected to happen after Saturday's game, sources say.— Mike Garafolo (@MikeGarafolo) January 6, 2017
This is not the first report about Buffalo being interested in Richard, as a similar one was leaked four days ago, but this is the first one to nail down a time and to sound a little more concrete.
Richard has been with Pete Carroll for his entire career as a coach, starting in 2008 as a grad assistant after his playing career ended quietly with Seattle and the San Francisco 49ers. He worked his way up to defensive backs coach with the Seahawks and then defensive coordinator after Dan Quinn left in 2015 to take the Atlanta Falcons head coaching position. The defense has finished first and third in points allowed, respectively, in Richard’s two seasons at the helm. They were fifth in defensive DVOA this season despite playing large chunks without Thomas, Kam Chancellor, and Michael Bennett, at different times.
The Bills finished 7-9 and Ryan was criticized for making the defense considerably worse in the two years after Doug Marrone left. Coincidentally, Marrone is being considered to replace Gus Bradley in Jacksonville. Of course, Bradley was the DC who preceded Quinn when he left in 2013 to take the helm for the Jaguars.