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3 Coaches That Fit Chris Spielman's Vision

These three coaches would be very appealing to Chris Spielman

Well, Chris Spielman isn't going to land the Lions general manager job, but he is back with the organization as a special assistant to team chairman Sheila Ford Hamp and team president and CEO Rod Wood.

And it's a rare move made by the Lions where fans all across the board and pundits love it.

In his new role, Spielman, who donned the Honolulu Blue as a player from 1988-95, will aid in the franchise's search for its next GM and head coach.

Hamp and Wood are entrusting in the former Fox Sports broadcaster to help the organization establish a winning culture that was nonexistent while Matt Patricia and Bob Quinn were in charge as head man and general manager, respectively. 

It will take the team ridding itself of the final remnants of the disappointing "Patriot Way" era, and it won't happen overnight.

But, Spielman believes the Lions can build a positive culture and become a winning organization through not only "clear communication" on the "direction" the team is headed but also through the GM and head coach working in "unison." 

"Everybody understands the head coach and the general manager have to be in unison. Now, they can fight and argue, which is healthy. But, I'll tell you this, there's going to be unity," Spielman told reporters Tuesday during his introductory press conference. "It's not going to be an us vs. them. You can't build a winning culture in us vs. them."

With Spielman's voice now an active part of the organization, here are three head coaching candidates that would make sense for Detroit to target.

San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh 

Boy, do Lions fans love themselves some Robert Saleh. 

Even with Spielman now being a part of Detroit's front office, Saleh still appears to be the favorite to land the Lions head coaching job.

And it makes all the sense in the world, not only because of Saleh being a Dearborn, Mich., native and the strong, positive impact he's had on the 49ers' defense.

But, also because of the fact that he's a fiery individual and gets his players to want to run through a "brick wall" for him.

He's just the type of coach that Spielman would want to play for, and it further builds Saleh's candidacy as the top option for the head coach opening in Detroit.

Minnesota Vikings co-defensive coordinator/linebackers coach Adam Zimmer 

The son of Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer hasn't been mentioned in many circles as a top candidate for NFL head coaching vacancies.

But, the fact that Spielman's older brother Rick Spielman is the general manager in Minnesota at least gives Adam Zimmer a shot at the job. 

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It also doesn't hurt that he's coached linebackers with the Vikings -- the position that Chris Spielman played during his college and pro football career -- since 2014, and has played an instrumental role in the development of Eric Kendricks.

Kendricks, a second-round pick in 2015, was an AP first-team All-Pro selection in 2019, after totaling 110 tackles and a career-high 12 passes defensed -- tied for the league-leading mark among all NFL linebackers. 

With Spielman on board with the Lions now, I wouldn't be surprised if Zimmer gets an interview for the team's head coaching gig. 

Indianapolis Colts defensive coordinator Matt Eberflus

Eberflus' name has become a hot one in head coaching circles, due to the high-quality job he's done with the Colts' defense. 

Through 13 games, Indianapolis has allowed the 12th-fewest points per game at 23.1/game. 

Not that it holds a ton of value, but Eberflus also was born in Ohio, just like Spielman.

All of the above lands the Colts defensive coordinator as the third candidate on this list. 

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