NFL World Reacts to UCLA Hiring Eric Bieniemy as Offensive Coordinator

With the Commanders not retaining Eric Bieniemy, UCLA has hired him as associate head coach and offensive coordinator. How is the NFL world reacting?

While the NFL‘s coaching carousel is over for the 2024 go-around, college hires are still being made. That includes the guys who didn’t get NFL jobs in this year’s cycle.

One of those guys? Former Kansas City Chiefs and Washington Commanders offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy, who is joining UCLA’s staff as an associate head coach and offensive coordinator. How is the NFL world reacting?

Eric Bieniemy’s College Transition Warrants NFL World Reaction

According to both Adam Schefter and Pete Thamel, Bieniemy is finalizing a two-year deal to join the Bruins. He’s joining newly hired head coach DeShaun Foster, who was signed on after Chip Kelly left the team.

“Went from Super Bowl champion OC to being a OC for UCLA? Damn,” said one NFL fan on X (formerly known as Twitter). Bieniemy got his first NFL offensive coordinator position with the Chiefs back in 2018 after being with the team as the running backs coach from 2013-2017. He stayed with the Chiefs until 2022, leaving for the Commanders.

Before coaching, Bieniemy was a player for the Los Angeles Chargers, Cincinnati Bengals, and Philadelphia Eagles from 1991-1999. He was a running back who had been drafted in the second round of the 1991 NFL Draft.

His coaching career started in 2000 as an assistant coach at Thomas Jefferson High School. However, he got a job as a running backs coach with the University of Colorado, his alma mater, in 2001. He stayed a running backs coach through 2010, working with UCLA and the Minnesota Vikings.

His first offensive coordinator position came in 2011 with Colorado once again. He stayed with them until 2012, leaving for the Chiefs in 2013. Despite interest over the last handful of years, Bieniemy has never been a head coach in his career. “How was this guy never an NFL HC?” said another fan on X.

“Happy for Eric Bieniemy becoming the Offensive Coordinator and Associate Head Coach at @UCLAFootball as reported by @PeteThamel and @AdamSchefter, but how this man can’t get a Head Coaching job in the NFL or in College is UNBELIEVABLE,” said Robert Griffin III on X.

In his first year as the Chiefs’ offensive coordinator, KC was first in the NFL in yards per game and points scored. He also oversaw the Chiefs winning multiple Super Bowls and quarterback Patrick Mahomes won multiple MVPs, including one in which he passed for over 5,000 yards and 50 touchdowns.

The main reason he decided to leave the Chiefs for the Commanders was the ability to call plays. With the Chiefs, head coach Andy Reid handled play-calling duties, but with the Commanders, it was all Bieniemy.

He had signed a two-year deal with the team but did not make it past one season, as head coach Ron Rivera was fired.

“Looks like he finally found his home,” said another NFL fan. “Sad that he won’t bring all us fantasy players some crazy points this season.”

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In Bieniemy’s first and only season with the Commanders, albeit with a significantly less talented team, Washington finished 4-13. The offense ranked 21st in average yards per game during that stretch. He was not retained by the newly hired Dan Quinn for 2024, as the Commanders hired Kliff Kingsbury as OC instead.

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