Green Bay Packers fans might not be thrilled about it, but Joe Barry likely isn't going anywhere anytime soon.
Watching Barry's defense is often a frustrating and uncomfortable experience. How often do teams run all over the Packers with ease? Even in victory over the Kansas City Chiefs, why was Travis Kelce regularly about a mile away from any Green Bay defender?
However, this season, a frustrating watch hasn't often translated to negative results. Barry's defense is getting the job done, and that's all that matters.
Sometimes, there's good luck, such as the missed pass-interference call on rookie Carrington Valentine against the Chiefs or Quentin Johnston's game-sealing drop to hand the Packers victory over the Los Angeles Chargers. But every team has their share of luck.
The results across the season are all that matters. The Chiefs were able to bend the Packers' defense last week, but they rarely broke it, scoring only 19 points.
The numbers for this defense will likely land Barry at least another year.
Packers defense is finding a way under Joe Barry
Barry's philosophy is clear. He regularly plays soft coverages, which can be frustrating as it leads to easy completions, but the idea is to keep everything in front of the defense and limit big plays. It forces an offense to dink-and-dunk their way downfield and rely on yards after the catch.
It's hard to regularly sustain long drives that result in touchdowns, as proven in the Chiefs game. In the first half, Kansas City ran a combined 27 plays on only two drives but came away with just six points. It allowed the Packers to build a 14-6 halftime lead.
Green Bay may give up yards, especially on the ground. The Packers are 30th against the run. But opponents have to battle to score points, with Green Bay allowing only 20.3 points per game, the ninth-best record in the NFL.
The Packers have only allowed more than 20 points five times in 12 games. Two of them were in the opening four games. Since Week 5, Green Bay has allowed just 18.4 points per game.
The record is even better during the Packers' recent 4-1 stretch. In games against the Los Angeles Rams, Pittsburgh Steelers, Chargers, Detroit Lions, and Chiefs, Green Bay allowed only 17.4 points per game. That's winning football.
Even if you look back over Green Bay's past 17 games (starting in Week 13 of 2022, which gives us a full "season" of data), the Packers have allowed 19.5 points per game.
Barry's unit is far from perfect. Would this Packers defense reach an even higher level with another defensive coordinator who plays a more aggressive scheme? Perhaps.
But that's no guarantee. Green Bay's defense is getting the job done, holding opponents to 20 or fewer points in seven games this season. That is the sustained success every team strives for and a defensive effort good enough to make the playoffs.
Four of the Packers' remaining five games are against offenses ranking inside the bottom 12 for points scored. Two are among the worst four.
That gives the defense a tremendous opportunity to finish strong and ensure Joe Barry remains in Green Bay.