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Teryl Austin Likely to Return as Lions DC: Big win for Detroit

It looks like the Detroit Lions are 1-0, so far this off season.

Detroit Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin turned an underwhelming defense into a dominant one. Thus, as in similar cases, the NFL head coaching carousal came calling. After drawing interest from four teams (the Bears, Bills, Broncos and 49er’s) who all chose to go different coaching routes, Austin’s last hope at a head coaching gig seemed to be in Atlanta with the Falcons.

Austin interviewed for the second time this past Thursday with Atlanta, and according to reports truly impressed the Atlanta team management, which included team president Rich McKay and GM Thomas Dimitroff.

However, it seems it wasn’t enough to convince a hire.

The Falcons have showed equally, if not stronger, interest in Seattle defensive coordinator Dan Quinn and according to NFL.com, the team is prepared to go in that direction. This is evidenced by the Falcons reported hiring of offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan. Austin gave his job pitch with former Denver Broncos OC Adam Gase as apart of his staff cabinet. Shanahan is presumed to be a part of a package deal to bring Quinn on board the day after Seattle’s playoff run ends.

So, alas, it seems that Austin will remain as the Lions defensive coordinator for at least one more season, which by all accounts is the first giant victory for the team this off season.

Austin’s player development and aggressive defensive schemes changed the culture on a Lions defense that was seen as the team’s Achilles heel before the season began. He helped orchestrate one of the best rushing defenses in recent memory and took a beaten up secondary to the top third in league against the pass. As the Lions defensive identity prepares to be challenged by the free agency and NFL draft landscapes, it has to feel like a huge win to Lions personnel and fans alike that we can attain Austin’s services.

NFL teams tugged at Austin but didn’t pull him in.

Their loss, our gain.

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