Raheem Morris now Atlanta Falcons’ 1st Black head coach after he was initially passed over for the job

Abu Mubarik January 31, 2024
Raheem Morris. Photo: Instagram/falconsdeutsch/atlantafalcons

Raheem Morris has been named the head coach of the Atlanta Falcons, making him the first non-interim Black coach to manage the NFL team and also one of nine head coaches of color to start the 2024 season.

Morris, 47, was hired by the Falcons after 14 candidates were interviewed, with Super Bowl winner Bill Belichick the most notable among them, according to the Associated Press. “This is a historic day for the Atlanta Falcons – after a comprehensive search, we are thrilled to welcome Raheem Morris back to Atlanta as the team’s new head coach,” owner Arthur Blank said.

In a post on Instagram, the Atlanta Falcons welcomed Morris with the caption, “Back and better than ever!” He had previously served as the Assistant Head Coach & Pass Game Coordinator of the Falcons in 2015. He was also the Assistant Head Coach & Wide Receivers Coach from 2016 to 2019, the Defensive Coordinator in 2020, and the Interim Head Coach in 2020.

“I am overjoyed for the opportunity for my family and I to return to Atlanta as the Falcons head coach,” Morris said. “I am incredibly appreciative of Arthur Blank for his leadership and for this entire organization for putting its trust in me to help lead this team.”

Morris is credited with spearheading the Rams’ Super Bowl-winning defense as its coordinator in the 2021 season. What is more, he joins the Falcons with some 59 games under his belt as an NFL head coach — 17-31 with the Buccaneers and 4-7 with the Falcons, according to NFL.com.

He started his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Hofstra in 1998. He first coached in the NFL during the 2002 season with the Buccaneers as a defensive quality coach. According to NFL.com, Morris coached nine seasons with the Bucs over two stints.

Also, he coached Washington as a secondary assistant under Mike Shanahan and Jay Gruden for three years before moving to Atlanta to become a member of Dan Quinn’s staff as an assistant head coach and defensive passing game coordinator in 2015.

After he was passed over for the Falcons head coach job following the 2020 season in favor of Arthur Smith, Morris moved to the Rams. He now replaces Smith, who was fired following three straight 7-10 seasons.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: January 31, 2024


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