5 candidates to replace Ben Johnson as Lions offensive coordinator if he leaves for a head coaching job

If (and it is a huge 'if') Ben Johnson takes a head coaching job after this season, who could replace him as the Lions offensive coordinator?

Kirthmon F. Dozier / USA TODAY NETWORK
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3. Ronald Curry

Current Job: New Orleans Saints Quarterbacks Coach/Passing Game Coordinator

Another former college quarterback, Curry has been an offensive assistant (2016-2017), wide receivers coach (2018-2020) and now quarterbacks coach (2021-present) in New Orleans since 2016. He added passing game coordinator to his title in 2022.

From 2016-2020, Curry overlapped on Sean Payton's staff in New Orleans with Lions' head coach Dan Campbell (and defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn). So there is some inherent familiarity there,
and Curry's next step would likely be to being an offensive coordinator and a play caller.

It's fair to assume Campbell would at least want to interview Curry if he has to replace Johnson.

2. Scottie Montgomery

Current Job: Detroit Lions Associate Head Coach/Running Backs Coach

Montgomery is in his first year on the Lions' staff, as he replaced Duce Staley. He's well-regarded around the league, and he has done nice work with rookie running back Jahmyr Gibbs this year.

Montgomery may also have one of the more wide-ranging coaching resumes around among NFL assistant coaches. Check it out.

  • Duke, Wide receivers coach (2006-2009)
  • Pittsburgh Steelers, Wide receivers coach (2010-2012)
  • Duke, Associate head coach/offensive coordinator/passing game/wide receivers coach (2013)
  • Duke, Associate head coach/offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach (2014-2015)
  • East Carolina, Head coach (2016-2018)
  • Maryland, Offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach (2019-2020)
  • Indianapolis Colts, Running backs coach (2021-2022)
  • Detroit Lions, Associate head coach/running backs coach (2023-)

Montgomery could be a dark horse candidate for NFL head coaching openings after the season. But an easy step would be to an offensive coordinator post, and if Johnson leaves for a head coaching job that opportunity has a solid chance to come in Detroit.