The Detroit Lions now hold their interim head coach position, as Darrell Bevell will not be able to play Saturday’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, due to the COVID-19 protocol on Saturday.
Sources said the Lions would take on wide receiver coach Robert Prince in a head-coaching role and turn over playcalling duties to quarterback coach Sean Ryan, who has never been a playcaller at any stage in his career.
Prince, who has never been a head coach, was an offensive coordinator at Fort Lewis College (1994–95), in the Japanese X League (1996–97), Portland State (1999–2000) and Boise State (2012–). 13). He was the passing game coordinator in Colorado in 2010.
He has been with the Lions since 2014, brought in by former coach Jim Cadwell.
The Lions still have big problems to solve defensively. Coordinator Corey Underlin and all three primary position coaches – defensive line coach Bo Davis, linebackers coach Ty McKenzie and defensive backs coach Steve Gregory – were kept away from the facility on Wednesday as close contacts due to COID-19.
“It was something we had to plan for,” Bevell said on Wednesday. “So there are contingency plans, and every time something happens, we’re adjusting to that. I still think we’re gathering some more information.”
On Monday, both squad linebacker Anthony Pittman and a coach tested positive for COVID-19. The NFL and the Lions then went through their close contact tracing processes and wiped out most of the defensive staff.
Bevell said Wednesday that he believes this was due to the team’s most recent game trip to Tennessee – Nashville has one of the highest all-new rates of COVID-19 in the nation – but is otherwise unsure How players and coaches contracted the virus.
On Wednesday, Bevelle would not “confirm or refute” a report by the Detroit Free Press that one defensive assistant was not wearing his contact tracing tracker at all times and another held a meeting inside his office.
“We’re not going to get into the specifics of all of this. It goes back to contact tracing,” Bevell said. “When you finished a positive test, what probably happened to us was that maybe it was a perfect storm, when you have a away game and you have a positive test on Monday, they are 48 hours. Let’s go back.
“In the event of a trip, you have a plane, you have a hotel, you have buses, you have small lockers at far away places. So there’s a lot of things to get through and a lot of information on that. ‘ Still all that work. “
ESPN’s Adam Scare contributed to this report.