The Cincinnati Bengals blew out the Buffalo Bills on their home field on Sunday to advance to the AFC Championship Game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Meanwhile, LA Chargers fans watched from home, still nursing their wounds from the disastrous Wild Card Round loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars.
The biggest focus around the Chargers right now is the vacant offensive coordinator position. Joe Lombardi was fired quickly after the Wild Card Round loss and the Chargers have officially requested to interview two coaches at this point in time (Zac Robinson, Jerrod Johnson).
There are several other quality candidates that the Bolts may pursue, potentially including someone on the Bengals' staff. The Bengals' blowout win over the Bills may prompt the Chargers to give an extra look towards quarterbacks coach Dan Pitcher.
Dan Pitcher could be a strong candidate for Chargers offensive coordinator.
There are several things working in Dan Pitcher's favor on top of being part of one of the most successful offensive coaching staffs in the sport. Brandon Staley has not been shy in expressing how much he loves the Sean McVay/Kyle Shanahan coaching tree and Pitcher is an extension of that.
While he has not coached directly under either coach, he has been a key member of Zac Taylor's coaching staff. Taylor's tenure as the quarterbacks coach with the LA Rams is what got him his chance to be the Bengals' head coach in 2019.
Pitcher also has ties to general manager Tom Telesco. Pitcher started as a scouting assistant with the Indianapolis Colts in 2012, graduating to a pro scout in 2014 and 2015 before joining the Bengals' coaching staff. Telesco was the vice president of football operations for the Colts in 2012.
There are some potential drawbacks in hiring Pitcher as well. While he is part of a great offensive coaching staff, it is worth wondering how big of an impact he is actually having. Both Taylor and offensive coordinator Brian Callahan have a bigger hand on the offense than Pitcher.
His resume is a bit light as well. While Staley did say that experience is not something that is required for the offensive coordinator job, not having any experience is going to cause more of an uphill battle for Pitcher compared to other options.
But he has the qualifications and the ties to at least get his foot in the door. From there, all it takes is alignment between he, Staley and the front office and Pitcher could become a shocking hire.