REPORT: Chargers hire Anthony Lynn as HC


It’s been a very busy day for the Chargers. After officially making the announcement to relocate to Los Angeles earlier, the Chargers have now found their new head coach.

According to NFL Insider Ian Rapoport, the Chargers are set to hire former Bills interim head coach Anthony Lynn.

The #Chargers are finalizing a deal with Anthony Lynn, source said.

— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 13, 2017

Lynn filled in as interim HC for the season finale after Rex Ryan got fired. Prior to that, Lynn started off the 2016 season as the Bills’ running backs coach, the same position he manned in 2015. He then transitioned to offensive coordinator after Greg Roman was let go following Week 2, which marked the first time in his coaching career where Lynn called the plays. He’ll be the Chargers’ first ever black head coach.

It’s a bit of a surprise that the Chargers chose Lynn after the team interviewed all but one (Lynn) defensive-minded coach. After 10 years with an offensive-minded coach running things (Mike McCoy and Norv Turner), you would think the Chargers would have changed it up.

But maybe they changed things up in a different way. With QB Philip Rivers getting up there in age and 2016 first-round RB Melvin Gordon showing he can handle the load after a dominant sophomore season, maybe the torch has finally been passed on to the latter. It’s ironic that when Turner took over as HC in 2007, the torch was essentially passed on from star RB LaDainian Tomlinson to Rivers.

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And this could be the right thing for the Chargers. The Bills led the league in rushing offense in both 2015 and 2016, with LeSean McCoy leading the way last year with 1,267 rushing yards, which ranked sixth-best in the NFL. The Bills also did well scoring, finishing with 24.9 points per game, good for 10th-best in the league and right behind the Chargers (ninth).

The Chargers reportedly wanted a head coach who would retain Ken Whisenhunt as the team’s offensive coordinator, something Lynn was okay with. The next question is whether or not defensive coordinator John Pagano will be kept. It was reported that former Jaguars HC Gus Bradley would follow Lynn wherever he signed. Bradley failed as a HC in Jacksonville but thrived as the DC in Seattle.

If that’s the case, then this hiring is very exciting, because the Chargers could potentially have the right guy running the defense. Bradley runs a 4-3 scheme, so it’ll be interesting to see how everything plays out.

A ground-and-pound offense with a punch-you-in-the-mouth defense is in the making. Hopefully, Lynn, who is a first-time head coach, can be a true leader, someone the Chargers desperately need.