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Packers Will Interview Ravens’ Dennard Wilson for Defensive Coordinator

In his first season as defensive backs coach, the Baltimore Ravens fielded the best pass defense in the AFC and reached the conference championship game.
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GREEN BAY, Wis. – Green Bay Packers coach Matt LaFleur’s search for a defensive coordinator will continue with Baltimore Ravens defensive backs coach Dennard Wilson, according to NFL Network.

This was Wilson’s first season in Baltimore, and it hardly could have gone better. Baltimore became the first team in NFL history to lead the league in points allowed, sacks and takeaways. Wilson’s secondary, which finished No. 1 in opponent passer rating, played a big role.

The previous two seasons, he was defensive backs coach and defensive passing game coordinator for the Philadelphia Eagles. In 2022, the Eagles reached the Super Bowl behind a defense that finished fifth in passer rating and first in yards.

When Jonathan Gannon went from defensive coordinator of the Eagles to head coach of the Arizona Cardinals after the 2022 season, Wilson was a candidate to replace Gannon. That job went to Sean Desai, so Wilson pursued other opportunities. He pounced at the opportunity to coach his home-state Ravens.

“The ball travels further and faster in the air than it does the ground,” he said during his first training camp with the Ravens. “We’ve got to eliminate the explosive plays and we’ve got to keep the passing yards down.

“The biggest thing is attacking the ball with violence. We’ve got to create way more turnovers. The two big winning factors in football are explosive plays and takeaways.”

Wilson believes he is ready to run a defense.

“I've been doing this a long time, and I've been around some great defensive coordinators, in my opinion,” Wilson said during training camp in 2022. “I've been groomed by Gregg Williams, I've been groomed by Todd Bowles, who are very good in this league, and they're very thorough.

“I've been tutored by them. I know how to run a ship. I know the responsibilities. So, if the opportunity presents itself, I'll be ready for it. But I'm here where my feet are and I'm just trying to be the best defensive backs coach I can be.”

Wilson was a three-year starting defensive back at the University of Maryland from 2000 through 2003. He spent part of the 2004 season on Washington’s practice squad.

Wilson got his start in coaching at DeMatha (Md.) Catholic High School from 2004 through 2006 before returning to his collegiate alma mater as a graduate assistant in 2007 and 2008.

From there, he served as a pro scout for the Chicago Bears from 2008 through 2011. Wilson worked as defensive backs coach of the Rams from 2012 through 2016 and the New York Jets from 2017 through 2020.

The Ravens lost to the Chiefs in Sunday’s AFC Championship Game. While Patrick Mahomes was 30-of-39 passing, the Ravens limited him to 241 yards – just 6.18 yards per attempt.

During the season, Baltimore finished first in the NFL in opponent passer rating and yards per attempt and third in interceptions en route to earning homefield advantage.

Of note: Ravens under coordinator Mike Macdonald operated out of a 3-4 alignment this season. The Eagles ran a 4-3 while the Jets ran a 3-4.

Wilson is the fifth known candidate. There undoubtedly have been others that have gone unreported.

This story will be updated.