Packers fans are worried Matt LaFleur is going to hire Joe Barry 2.0

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The future of Green Bay Packers defensive coordinator Joe Barry remains a key talking point.

Matt LaFleur has remained loyal to Barry, but the Packers continue to underperform defensively, particularly against the run, ranking 31st in the NFL. Barry's unit has allowed over 200 rushing yards in four games this season.

LaFleur moving on from Barry in the offseason is a big if. And Packers fans are worried that LaFleur could hire Joe Barry 2.0 as his replacement.

Brandon Staley's time as the Los Angeles Chargers head coach appears to be nearing an end. Even before Justin Herbert's injury, the Chargers fell well short of expectations. A team that should be competing in the AFC West entered Week 15 with a 5-8 record.

If the Chargers move on, a potential landing spot for Staley would be in Green Bay as LaFleur's defensive coordinator. But it's not a move many Packers fans would be particularly impressed by.

Packers hiring Brandon Staley to replace Joe Barry wouldn't fix anything

So, why could the Packers potentially have interest in Staley if he became available?

LaFleur and Staley both come from the Sean McVay coaching tree. Staley was the Los Angeles Rams' defensive coordinator in 2020. Barry was also part of that staff as the Rams' assistant head coach and linebackers coach.

Barry was expected to join Staley's staff with the Los Angeles Chargers in 2021, but the Packers offered him their defensive coordinator job.

Staley runs a similar system to Barry. If LaFleur makes a change but wants a similar system, Staley would be a possible candidate.

However, the Packers would be taking a massive risk.

Staley's one year as a defensive coordinator in the NFL went well, but his defenses for the Chargers have been every bit as disappointing as the Packers' under Barry.

Staley led the Los Angeles Rams' defense to No. 1 in the NFL in 2020, landing him the Chargers' head coach job the following season. However, that's where the positives end. Here's how his Chargers defenses have ranked each year:

  • 2021: 23rd total, 12th pass defense, 30th run defense, 30th scoring defense
  • 2022: 20th total, 7th pass defense, 28th run defense, 22nd scoring defense
  • 2023: 29th total, 29th pass defense, 16th run defense, 18th scoring defense

Note: 2023 numbers are before Week 15

Sound familiar? An underperforming unit that can hold up against the pass but struggles against the run? It sure sounds like Joe Barry's Packers defense.

And it's not like Staley hasn't had talent in Los Angeles. His defenses have included superstars like Joey Bosa, Derwin James, and Khalil Mack.

If the Chargers fire Staley, his next NFL job could be as a defensive coordinator. But the Packers shouldn't consider him as a replacement for Barry.

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