Meet Byron Leftwich

The Chicago Bears season is coming to an end and many fans have decided for a very long time what to do with Matt Nagy. With the Bears officially eliminated from the playoffs and the end near, many have turned to the head coaching contenders.

As the title suggests, we will continue our learning series to get to know several of the alleged candidates for Head Coaching. My most recent article was done on Leslie Fraizer and can be found here. Today we turn to a very intriguing name, Byron Leftwich.

Chicago Bears should definitely have an eye on Byron Leftwich as their next head coach

Byron leftwich is still fairly new to the coaching scene, but at one point he was thought to be the franchise QB for the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Jaguars drafted Leftwich 7th overall in the 2003 draft.

Leftwich stayed with the Jaguars for a few years before eventually losing the starting spot to quarterback David Garrard. It’s fair to call Leftwich a bust when you consider where he was drafted. Leftwich had a cannon and could move well despite his larger size, many comparisons have been made to Vikings QB Dante Culpepper.

After his stint at Jacksonville, Leftwich remained primarily a replacement for the rest of his career. From 2007 to 2012, he rebounded with the Falcons, Steelers and Buccaneers before retiring in 2012.

In 2016, Leftwich officially began coaching for a team. To be brought in by Bruce Arians as a member of the Arizona Cardinals coaching staff. He started out as a staff intern before moving up through the ranks to eventually become an OC. Leftwich was then let loose in 2018, along with HC Steve Wilks.

His unemployment was, however, of very short duration. Not even two weeks after being fired, Leftwich resurfaced as offensive coordinator at Tampa Bay, reuniting with Bruce Arians. Since 2020, Leftwich has been the main caller to play for a formidable attack from the Buccaneers.

Final verdict

Byron Leftwich is really a fascinating candidate in my opinion. On the surface, he is the promising young player that many teams are looking for. The biggest question for me is his general lack of experience as a coach.

He is clearly a disciple of Bruce Arians, who trained him in Pittsburgh at one point. Arians, has a lot of faith in Leftwich as a play caller, as evidenced by letting him call plays for the past couple of years. I think Leftwich is one of the best candidates overall, but I wouldn’t put him at the top of my list. Although it can be hard to catch anyway as rumors are the The Jaguars are very interested in him.

His lack of coaching experience is worrisome and let’s face it, his offense at Tampa Bay is absolutely loaded. That being said, I think Leftwich has it all to be a great manager of the future.

If the Chicago Bears show a long-term commitment to Leftwich, there might be something special about them. Leftwich might not be my number one choice, but I would have him firmly in my top five contenders. As always, let me know in the comments what you think of Byron Leftwich and any other nominees you might like to see.