The Washington Commanders hired Kliff Kingsbury as their next offensive coordinator, the team announced Monday.
Kingsbury is signing a three-year deal, according to Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated.
Washington also hired Dallas Cowboys secondary coach and pass-game coordinator Joe Whitt Jr. as its next defensive coordinator.
Whitt Jr. has been with the Cowboys for the last three seasons. He served as the secondary coach and pass-game coordinator for the Cleveland Browns and Atlanta Falcons before landing in Dallas. The 45-year-old was also the cornerbacks coach for the Green Bay Packers from 2009-17.
Kingsbury was a senior offensive analyst for USC last season after spending four years as the head coach of the Arizona Cardinals. The 44-year-old was Texas Tech’s head coach for six seasons before his Cardinals stint.
Arizona’s offense was about league average with Kingsbury calling the shots. The Cardinals ranked 16th in EPA/play during his four-year tenure, according to Ben Baldwin’s database, and never ranked higher than 10th in points per game in a single season.
Kingsbury withdrew his name from the Las Vegas Raiders’ offensive coordinator job after contract negotiations broke down. He was reportedly set to take the role, and both sides were expecting a deal to get done.
UCLA head coach Chip Kelly was also a potential candidate for the role.
The Commanders named former Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn as their new head coach Saturday. This is the first significant hire Quinn has made since taking over as head boss.
Washington has struggled mightily on offense in recent years. The club ranks 28th in offensive success rate since 2019, per Baldwin’s database, and failed to rank inside the top 20 in points per game during that stretch.
Sam Howell was the team’s starting quarterback for all 17 games in 2023. He got off to a hot start, throwing for 2,783 yards with 17 touchdowns and nine interceptions in his first 10 games. However, he was benched twice in December, and the team lost its final eight games of the season.
The Commanders have resources to help Kingsbury turn their offensive woes around. Washington has the most cap space in the NFL with $73.6 million, according to Over the Cap, and it owns the No. 2 selection in the upcoming NFL draft.
USC quarterback Caleb Williams is expected to be one of the first picks off the board, and Kingsbury spent the 2023 season coaching the Trojans signal-caller.