The first external coaching hire of the Mike Macdonald era has been made.
The #Seahawks are hiring Leslie Frazier as their assistant head coach, per sources.— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) February 2, 2024
The onetime #Vikings head coach, Frazier has long been a mentor to Macdonald. Now he joins Macdonald’s staff in Seattle. pic.twitter.com/JBYnbHSc4V
Frazier was most recently the Buffalo Bills defensive coordinator from 2017-2022, but did not return for the 2023 season. He intended to return to coaching at some point in 2024, and interviewed for the Miami Dolphins’ defensive coordinator job earlier this month. Frazier’s Bills defenses ranked in the top-10 by DVOA in four of his six seasons. He similarly held an assistant head coach role in his last three seasons in Buffalo.
Fans may recall that Frazier was the head coach of the Minnesota Vikings from late 2010 (as an interim) until 2013, reaching the playoffs in 2012 with Christian Ponder at quarterback and Adrian Peterson as his MVP running back.
Where does the mentorship connection come between Frazier and Macdonald, you wonder? Well, Frazier and Macdonald were both on the Baltimore Ravens staff in 2016; Macdonald was a defensive assistant and Frazier coached the secondary.
It’s worth noting that, unless there’s some additional reporting to come, Frazier is just an assistant head coach and not taking a defensive coordinator role. That search is apparently still ongoing. Frazier does provide prior head coaching experience and he is going to be the veteran presence (or, at least one of them) on the coaching staff.