In completely random fashion, the Los Angeles Rams could decide to move on from Defensive Coordinator Wade Phillips after the conclusion of this season, per Alex Marvez:
I'm hearing there's a chance Wade Phillips doesn't return as @RamsNFL d-coordinator. In final year of his contract. He's expected to meet with Sean McVay at season's end. Rams LBs coach Joe Barry would be strong replacement candidate. More tonight 8-11 pm et on @SiriusXMNFL— Alex Marvez (@alexmarvez) December 21, 2019
As Marvez noted, Phillips is in the final year of his contract since joining Head Coach Sean McVay in L.A. in 2017, and the Rams could ultimately allow him ride this season out and part ways.
In his three seasons with the Rams, the defense has ranked 12th, 20th, and 15th in points allowed, and 19th, 19th, and 12th in yards per game allowed. Admittedly, more was probably expected when adding the potential Hall-of-Fame coach, particularly with all the talented defensive additions that were added over his tenure (CB’s Marcus Peters, Aqib Talib, Eric Weddle, Jalen Ramsey, EDGE Dante Fowler Jr., etc).
Marvez mentioned current Linebackers Coach Joe Barry as a logical and potential replacement, but Barry has not been much better in his past as a Defensive Coordinator. Serving as the DC with the Detroit Lions in 2007 and 2008, the defense ranked 32nd in points allowed and yards allowed both years. As a DC with the Washington Redskins in 2015 and 2016, the defense ranked 17th and 19th in points allowed and 28th in yards allowed in both years.
The grass isn’t always greener, which is why the Rams may want to look into extending Phillips’ stay with the team, though it remains to be seen whether the Son of Bum has any interest in doing so.
One sneaky name to note is current Cornerbacks Coach Aubrey Pleasant, which interviewed with the Cincinnati Bengals for the DC position in the offseason. The Rams are admittedly high on him and could ultimately choose to promote from a young and promising coach from within.