With Tommy Rees officially leaving to take over as the offensive coordinator at Alabama, Notre Dame football needs a replacement. Here are some potential candidates we think could be homerun hires for coach Marcus Freeman.
Notre Dame football OC – Byron Leftwich
Most recently, Leftwich was the offensive coordinator for Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. While he’s a two-time Superbowl champion, once as a player and once as a coach, he was let go from his position with Tampa Bay this past season. Would succeeding as offensive coordinator propel Leftwich to a head coaching gig? Although likely not directly to the NFL, it could lead to a head coaching job in college as a stepping stone toward the NFL.
A former quarterback that played in the NFL for 5 different cities, Leftwich would dominate on the recruiting trail and as coordinator. While it remains to be seen what his next step is, it’s easier to see him moving to the college level if it’s as a head coach. Still, Byron would be a huge get for coach Marcus Freeman given his success in the NFL.
Notre Dame football OC – Joe Brady
While he is currently the quarterback’s coach for the Buffalo Bills, Brady has had massive success at the college level as an offensive coordinator. While some credit can obviously be given to the emergence of Joe Burrow, Brady was the one calling the shots during that 2019 season. As a result, Joe took home the Broyles Award, which recognizes one assistant coach as the best in the nation.
While he has succeeded as offensive coordinator and has held the same position in the NFL, Brady could look to make a comeback to the position. As Notre Dame’s lead offensive play-caller, success would undoubtedly lead to other coaching opportunities. Whether it’s a head coaching position or another job as OC in the NFL, Brady would be in good shape with a strong showing for the Irish.
247Sports credits Brady with being involved in recruiting Arik Gilbert, the best tight end in his class. Though the hope is that he can recruit top QBs and others to South Bend, maybe he could help continue the “Tight End University” tradition with Notre Dame football.
Notre Dame football OC – Charlie Weis Jr.
I include Weis Jr. here simply for one of the more incredible college football redemption arcs in the sport’s history. After his dad struggled as the head coach for the Notre Dame football program, Jr. could earn some redemption for the family. The university was on the hook for millions as Weis was out the door, but Charlie could change everything.
While I’m being partly facetious, there’s some natural substance behind such a choice for coach Marcus Freeman and Jack Swarbrick. Currently the co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Ole Miss, Charlie is learning from one of the best offensive minds in the game. Could he excel as the sole coordinator for the Irish?
While I haven’t heard any rumors on any of the mentioned coaches above, Notre Dame should move swiftly in finding Tommy’s replacement. It’s a challenging chapter that should also be met with excitement. Whatever happens, trust in coach Freeman.