The Denver Broncos hired Nathaniel Hackett in 2022 hoping the Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator could lure Aaron Rodgers to Denver and transform the offense. Just one year later, Hackett could be headed back to Green Bay.
Hackett joined a growing list of NFL coaches fired, lasting just 15 games with the Broncos’ organization. The 43-year-old quickly showed his inexperience in Denver, first needing to hire an assistant to handle clock management and then later surrendering play-calling duties.
- Nathaniel Hackett coaching record: 4-11
He received strong endorsements from Rodgers and head coach Matt LaFleur before leaving for the Broncos’ job after spending three seasons as the top assistant on Green Bay’s coaching staff. As Hackett now evaluates his future in coaching, a return to Lambeau Field seems to be on the table.
Speaking to reporters on Monday, LaFleur said that he would be very open to welcoming Hackett. back to the coaching staff. While the Packers’ coach acknowledged that Hackett wants some time off, the door was left open for him to come back to Green Bay.
“I think I’ve definitely entertained all that. I think you can never have enough great coaches, and certainly you guys know how I feel about Nathaniel and the job he did here. But again, just getting started into the evaluation phase. I did talk to him after he got let go in Denver. I know that he needs some family time as well.”Green Bay Packers coach Matt LaFleur on Nathaniel Hackett
While LaFleur has already spoken with his former offensive coordinator, the conversation reportedly wasn’t about a potential return. Instead, they focused on each of their situations as a challenging season with conversations about the future saved for a later date.
Nathaniel Hackett could take on bigger role with Packers’ offense
While Hackett played an important role in shaping Green Bay’s offense during his three-year tenure (2019-’21), LaFleur serves as both the Packers’ head coach and offensive play-caller. However, that might change if a reunion comes to fruition.
As noted by Rob Demovsky of ESPN, adding Hackett back to the coaching staff could provide LaFleur with more flexibility. Green Bay’s head coach could focus on his normal responsibilities on the sideline, making sure players remain disciplined and getting involved with the defense to make it more consistent.
“As far as the playcalling’s concerned, yeah that’s crossed my mind in terms of I want to do whatever’s best for us to have success. If we feel like that is the best way for us to win games, then I would 100% hand that over.”Green Bay Packers head coach Matt LaFleur on the possibility of giving up play-calling duties
Hackett could take on the play-calling duties, a move that would likely be well-received by Rodgers if he returns in 2023. However, Hackett’s offenses in Denver and with the Jacksonville Jaguars might lead LaFleur to either divide the responsibilities or maintain the status quo.