The Cincinnati Bengals are working to make Teryl Austin the team’s next defensive coordinator, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.
The deal is not complete, but things are trending toward that direction after Cincinnati interviewed Austin on Friday.
Austin has actually been interviewed for Detroit’s opening at head coach following his most recent stint as the team’s defensive coordinator. However, Detroit appears to be zeroing in on New England Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia as their next head coach.
Austin He has coached up the Lions’ defense since 2014. During that span, Detroit has finished third, 23rd, 13th and 21st in points per game allowed. Austin’s defense has consistently been among the NFL’s best at forcing turnovers. This year, the Lions finished third in the NFL with 32 takeaways, despite playing five rookies in starting or key backup roles.
That’s likely what caught Lewis’ eye as he continues to rebuild his coaching staff. Austin had a recent coaching stint with the Baltimore Ravens as their secondary coach from 2011-13, so Marvin Lewis and the Bengals have some familiarity with him. He was also defensive coordinator for the Florida Gators in 2010.
Prior to that, Austin joined the Arizona Cardinals coaching staff as their defensive backs coach from 2007-09. In 2009, he helped the team reach Super Bowl XLIII, where they would lose to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The Bengals are in the market for a new defensive coordinator after Paul Guenther left to join the Oakland Raiders in that same role.