FLOWERY BRANCH – Bill Musgrave, the Falcons former assistant head coach/quarterbacks, accepted a position as the offensive coordinator of the Minnesota Vikings on Wednesday.
“We thank Bill for his contributions that he made to our team,” Falcons head coach Mike Smith said. “We wish him all the best with his promotion with the Vikings.”
Musgrave was granted permission by Smith to interview with the Minnesota Vikings and the Cleveland Browns. He interviewed with the Browns on Tuesday and with the Vikings on Wednesday.
“The organization is first class all the way and Leslie Frazier is first class all the way,” Musgrave said in a statement released by the Vikings. “The players on the offensive side of the ball are very attractive to be associated with. I’m looking forward to utilizing their strengths to get fantastic results. The offensive weapons on this squad are impressive.
“We as a staff will look forward to utilizing each and every one of them to attack defenses. I first met Leslie about 10 years ago when he was in Philadelphia and we’ve stayed in touch over the years. I look forward to working with him here and moving forward.”
Musgrave was granted permission by Falcons coach Mike Smith to interview with the Minnesota Vikings and the Cleveland Browns. He interviewed with the Browns on Tuesday and with the Vikings on Wednesday.
Musgrave was promoted to assistant head coach last offseason when the Houston Texans attempted to hire him away.
Musgrave joined Jim Mora’s staff in 2006. He was kept on after the Bobby Petrino disaster and has been instrumental in the development of quarterback Matt Ryan, who threw 28 touchdowns and nine interceptions while guiding the Falcons to a 13-3 regular-season record and the NFC South title.
Cleveland was thought to be Musgrave’s preference because they are set to run the West Coast offense and have a talented young quarterback in Colt McCoy. Minnesota finished the season with third-stringer Joe Webb.
Musgrave played in the West Coast offense for the San Francisco 49ers from 1991-1994.
Because of the promotion last season, the Falcons could have denied Musgrave permission to interview. But while
Smith wanted to keep his staff together, he didn’t want to stand in Musgrave’s way if he wanted to leave.
The Falcons coaching staff is set to coach in the Pro Bowl and will leave for Hawaii on Tuesday.
Possible replacements for Musgrave include Jeff Jagodzinski, who was Ryan’s head coach at Boston College. He served as the offensive line coach for the Falcons from 2004 to 2005. He was head coach of the Omaha Nighthawks in the UFL last season.
–D. Orlando Ledbetter