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Seahawks hiring Leslie Frazier as assistant head coach, will join Mike Macdonald’s staff in Seattle

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The Seattle Seahawks are hiring Leslie Frazier as their assistant head coach, according to CBS Sports HQ Senior NFL Insider Josina Anderson. Frazier will now join the staff of Mike Macdonald, who was officially hired as head coach earlier this week to succeed Pete Carroll. 

Given that Macdonald is currently the youngest head coach in the NFL, it’d make sense that he’d want someone with experience on the staff to tap into as a resource and Frazier brings that in bunches. The 64-year-old has been in the league since 1999 when he was hired as the defensive backs coach of the Philadelphia Eagles. Prior to that, he played in the league for five seasons as a cornerback (all with the Chicago Bears). Frazier also was the head coach of the Minnesota Vikings, starting under the interim tag in 2010 and assumed the full-time gig from 2011 to 2013. 

More recently, Frazier was in Buffalo as the defensive coordinator from 2017 to 2022. Over his final three seasons in the league, he also held the assistant head coach title that he’ll now don in Seattle. 

Last year, the Bills announced that Frazier would not be returning in 2023. While he was stepping away from the team, it wasn’t framed as a retirement, so this return to the league in this capacity isn’t too surprising. This offseason, Frazier was interviewed for the then-open Chargers head-coaching position before they went with Jim Harbaugh. He also reportedly garnered interest from the Miami Dolphins for their defensive coordinator job that opened up with the departure of Vic Fangio to the Eagles. Anderson reports that Frazier said four teams stepped up their efforts to pursue him before he decided to join Seattle. 

The difference, per Anderson, was his relationship with Macdonald.The duo did have some crossover when Frazier was in Baltimore as the Ravens secondary coach in 2016. At the time, Macdonald was a defensive assistant on the staff before ultimately ascending to defensive coordinator over the last two seasons. Frazier told Anderson that Macdonald was his quality control coach.

The two defensive-minded coaches will now look to improve a Seattle defense that gave up the sixth-highest yards per play average (5.5) in 2023 and was 31st in the league on third down with their opponents moving the chains on 46.3% of their third-down situations. 

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