How the Chargers firing Brandon Staley could directly impact Packers

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The Los Angeles Chargers' decision to fire head coach Brandon Staley could have ramifications across the league, including for the Green Bay Packers.

The Chargers are reeling from their 63-21 loss to the Las Vegas Raiders, but the vacant head coach job will arguably sit atop the list of most appealing landing spots for candidates at the end of the season.

And what's next for Staley? He earned the Chargers job after leading a dominant Los Angeles Rams defense in 2020.

There are two potentially significant ways the Staley firing could impact the Packers.

Packers division rival could lose offensive coordinator to Chargers

Future head coaches won't find many better landing spots than the Chargers. Yes, they are coming off a disappointing season, but there's a chance to enter a new era with a change at head coach and general manager.

The incoming coach doesn't have to worry about the quarterback position. The Chargers can compete in the AFC with Justin Herbert.

Enter Ben Johnson, who is currently the Detroit Lions' offensive coordinator. He is among the hottest names in the upcoming head coach hiring cycle.

Johnson has spearheaded the Lions' offensive revival. He inherited a unit that ranked 22nd in 2021 and helped them become the league's fourth-best offense last term. This year, Detroit ranks third in yards per game and seventh in points per game.

Jared Goff has played some of the best football of his career in Johnson's offense. Since the start of the 2022 season, Goff has completed 65.9 percent of his passes for 7,887 yards, 50 touchdowns, and 17 interceptions. Imagine what Johnson could do with Herbert.

The Packers would be delighted to see Johnson depart the NFC North and take his offensive scheme to Los Angeles.

The Lions are the best team in the division, but losing Johnson could have significant consequences for their offensive production in 2024.

Could Brandon Staley replace Joe Barry as Packers defensive coordinator?

The final four games of the regular season could determine Joe Barry's future in Green Bay.

The Packers can get away with their soft coverages and poor run defense when defending a lead against pass-first teams. But it's the opposite when they come up against teams that can run the football. Barry's unit has given up more than 200 rushing yards in four different games this season, and the worst part is that he seemingly doesn't learn and repeats the same mistakes.

If Matt LaFleur decides to make a change at defensive coordinator, Staley's name could come up.

Like LaFleur, Staley comes from the Sean McVay coaching tree. His defense follows a system similar to Barry and Vic Fangio's, which is what LaFleur has wanted in Green Bay.

Should LaFleur hire Staley? That's another question altogether. The Chargers' defense has had similarly underwhelming results under Staley, much like the Packers in Barry's system. Los Angeles had a bottom-five run defense in 2021 and 2022. In pass defense, Staley is often criticized for his soft coverages.

But if LaFleur wants to maintain a similar system with a new defensive coordinator, there aren't many better candidates than Staley. Perhaps taking away the head-coaching pressure would allow Staley to make a fresh start in Green Bay. His Rams defense led the NFL in almost every category in 2020.

Packers fans may not like it, but if LaFleur does move on from Barry, Staley's name could be near the top of the list.

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