Bieniemy’s offensive résumé is hard to beat.
Beyond playing a key role in the development of Mahomes, who is widely considered the NFL’s premier quarterback, Bieniemy has been the coordinator of a Chiefs offense that has won one Super Bowl, gone to another, finished first in the NFL in total offense three times in five seasons and hasn’t finished lower than sixth in the NFL.
Because of that track record, Bieniemy’s inability to land a head coaching job has puzzled NFL observers for a couple of seasons now, and the Chiefs offensive coordinator took part in the league’s accelerator program at the league meetings in May that was implemented to help diverse coaching and front office candidates network with owners around the league.
“First of all, I’ll say this, I thought the league did a heck of a job with the accelerated program this spring, and it was great to have an opportunity to be a part of that,” Bieniemy told Chiefs reporters at the end of December.
A concrete reason why Bieniemy hasn’t landed a head coaching job yet has not been reported.
Bieniemy does not call the plays in Kansas City, but plenty of offensive coordinators have gotten hired without handling play-calling duties. A few reporters have floated the idea that Bieniemy hasn’t interviewed well, but the Chiefs’ offensive coordinator has publicly stayed positive about his ongoing quest to become an NFL head coach.
“I’ve been in enough interviews to know that there’s always something to learn,” Bieniemy told The Associated Press earlier this year. “The beauty of being in the position that I’ve been in is I’ve seen how a lot of organizations are run, and I think having that diversity of talking to all these different organizations, it just gives me a better viewpoint of how I should establish myself, how I should go into this particular interview with this particular game plan, take more of a business approach.”
Bieniemy’s history with Ballard cannot be discounted.
Few general managers in the NFL have a better idea of how Bieniemy operates day to day, and Ballard deeply respects Reid, who has repeatedly and vociferously stumped for Bieniemy’s candidacy over the past couple of seasons.
But the Colts’ search will continue on Friday, and Indianapolis is casting a wide net.
Bieniemy, Indianapolis special teams coordinator Bubba Ventrone and Denver defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero have already interviewed. The Colts reportedly plan to interview Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson and Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris on Friday, then interview Eagles offensive coordinator Shane Steichen on Saturday.
Interim coach Jeff Saturday is also a candidate, and to this point, Indianapolis has only interviewed coaches who do not have a playoff game scheduled for the NFL’s Wild Card Weekend, making it likely that the search will expand as the playoffs advance.