The Pro Football Writers of America vote on a variety of awards, and they include one for the assistant coach of the year. Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan won the award. Reggie McKenzie was named executive of the year, and Jason Garrett was named coach of the year.
Shanahan handled play-calling for a Falcons offense that led the NFL in points scored, and ranked No. 1 in offensive DVOA. For comparison, the unit was 21st and 23rd in the two categories last year. Shanahan was OC last year as well, and there were some concerns about his interactions in particular with the receivers. But things turned around this year, and he helped Matt Ryan turn into an MVP candidate.
Now we are waiting to see how this plays out with the San Francisco 49ers. Shanahan is the only candidate remaining, and all indications are that both sides want to make this happen. The team will meet with him next week to likely finalize salary and personnel control issues. From there, hopefully he then becomes the head coach.
Here is the blurb PFWA included about Shanahan.
Shanahan oversaw a prolific Falcons offense that led the league in points with 540, which tied with the 2000 St. Louis Rams for the eighth-most season points scored all-time and 6,653 total offense yards, which is the 13th-most in a NFL season. Atlanta was second in the NFL in yards per game (a franchise-record 415.8), third in passing (295.3 yards per game) and fifth in rushing (120.5 yards per game). Quarterback Matt Ryan, who set franchise records in several categories and threw touchdown passes to a NFL-record 13 different receivers, was the 2016 PFWA NFL Most Valuable Player and an All-NFL selection. Wide receiver Julio Jones was also an All-NFL selection after a season in which he finished second in the NFL in receiving yards (1,409) and fourth in reception average at 17.0 yards per catch. Running back Devonta Freeman rushed for 1,079 yards and 11 touchdowns.