Leslie Frazier: It’s discouraging I haven’t had another chance to be a head coach

When Leslie Frazier was fired as head coach of the Vikings after the 2013 season, he figured he would eventually earn a second head-coaching job. So far, he hasn’t.

Frazier spent two seasons as the defensive coordinator of the Buccaneers after the Vikings fired him, and now he’s heading into his seventh season on the Bills’ staff, but he admits he finds it disappointing not to get another head-coaching job.

“I’d be lying if I told you that I felt like it would take this long to have that opportunity come along, especially after some of the success and particularly the most recent success we’ve had in Buffalo,” Frazier said on the AP Pro Football Podcast. “So it’s discouraging in some ways, but you just have to be able to control what you can control. I’m going to do the very best I can and help us to have another good defense in 2022 and help the Buffalo Bills win as many games as we can and put us in a position to compete for the world championship.”

Frazier is Black, and the NFL has faced criticism for having too few Black head coaches, but Frazier said there’s another profile he doesn’t fit: NFL teams are often looking for offensive coaches, and he coaches defense. Frazier interviewed for the Giants’ and Dolphins’ vacancies this offseason, and both teams hired coaches from the offensive side of the ball.

“Two of those cases, they said we would prefer to go with an offensive coach and they pointed to their young quarterback as the reason,” Frazier said. “And, I said this to both teams that I think I would do a good job of hiring a strong offensive coordinator, even though my background is defense. There have been a lot of defensive head coaches that have won Super Bowls in our league because at the end of the day, you need the right leadership. . . . It’s unfortunate. I think it’s very narrow-minded to only see the head coach as an offensive guy because you have a young quarterback. You need the right leader in that role because you’ve got to be able to handle multiple responsibilities, not just call offensive plays. I just think that’s a misguided approach, but I’m not the guy doing the hiring.”

The 63-year-old Frazier is hoping that 2023 will be the year when he gets his second chance to be a head coach.