Plot Twist: DeAngelo Hall lost Maryland gig interviewing for Redskins

Chris Lingebach
January 25, 2019 - 4:35 pm
DeAngelo Hall lost Maryland gig interviewing for Redskins

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Not only was DeAngelo Hall a finalist to coach the Redskins' defensive backs, he had actually landed the same position on Mike Locksley's Maryland staff.

The Redskins job eventually went to Ray Horton, and the Terps job to Cory Robinson (although, curiously, Robinson was hired back in December). Hall was shut out, 0-for-2. But that doesn't tell the whole story.

"It's true. I interviewed with the Redskins Tuesday for the DBs job," Hall confirmed to 106.7 The Fan's Grant Paulsen and Danny Rouhier on Friday.

"I actually interviewed at the University of Maryland as well for the DBs job," he said. "I actually had the DBs job at Maryland, but when I found out the Redskins was a possibility, which I'm finding out in the coaching world, nobody's gonna wait for you. Everybody thinks their job is the best job. So Coach Locksley out at Maryland, he gave me a couple days, but it wasn't enough time for me to actually figure out if I had gotten the Redskins job or not. So, consequently, I get neither and I get to continue to join you guys in the media world. Not a bad consolation prize at all."

The Redskins gave Hall serious consideration –  "He apparently had a really good interview," Paulsen had reported earlier. – but ultimately erred on the side of Horton's experience in the NFL coaching ranks.

As Hall explained, Locksley needed to lock down his coaching staff as soon as possible for recruiting purposes.

"And like I told Coach Locksley, full disclosure, I let him know what was going on," Hall said. "I let the Redskins know what was going on, because I felt like you gotta be honest. I didn't want it to be a Kliff Kingsbury situation where I tell Coach Locksley, 'Absolutely! I'm going to take this job!' And then obviously I interview with the Redskins and I get that one, and then I have to tell him, 'Coach, well, I can't coach for you.'

"And he's already told certain kids that I'm gonna be the coach, and he's recruiting. I didn't want it to be that conflict of interest, so I was trying to be as upfront and honest as possible, and like I said, I got neither."

Hall says he gained valuable experience from the interview process. From it he was at least able to glean that coaching is something he's now confident he wants to do.

"Playing and coaching is two different things," he said. "I'm definitely looking forward to the next chapter, if and when it comes to coaching, because it's something that, after going through this process, I definitely want to do it. I'm passionate about it. I think I can help guys out a lot."

"You know, I've been through so much, man. I don't think a lot of people really understand. I've been a top draft pick, I've been a Pro Bowler," he said. "My last season playing with the Redskins, I was a guy who was on the scout team playing receiver, and on the scout team playing DB, trying to get his mojo back. So I've been through a little bit of everything through my career, and it's definitely something I think that'll help me relate to a lot of players in that locker room."

How Hall came to interview for Maryland is a story all its own. It was Alabama coach Nick Saban, of all people, who recommended Hall to Locksley.

"When Coach Locksley called me, he had gotten my name from Coach Saban," Hall said. "And it's weird how connections work. I almost went down and worked for Coach Saban last year, but, you know, decided to give myself a break for a year and really see if it was my passion like I thought it was. A year later, it still was my passion, but Locksley got my name from Coach Saban, who thought I would be a good guy.

"And yeah, just being in the area, man. I had chances to go to other places, but ultimately I didn't want to move my family. It would have been the perfect situation. Next year, maybe we will have to all move. Who knows what the cards hold. This year, yeah. I thought it would be definitely easy to continue to be a part of the Redskins or be a part of the Maryland Terps. That's really what made me entertain it, because the location. It was a situation where, man, I don't have to move? I can live in my same house, my kids and family can all exist how we are and not have to pick up and move? Man, if it's meant to be, it'll be. It's the process, man. It's the coaching world, as they say."

And how did Hall come to know Saban? 

"I reached out to Coach Saban after my playing days was over, I guess January, February (of 2018)," Hall said. "Just kind of like, 'Hey Coach, I love watching you guys play. I love the way your guys play defensively, especially in the secondary. I look up to you as a coach, and man, if I can learn from you...'

"And he was like, 'Oh DeAngelo, I followed your career and I think you'd be a good fit.' Like I said, it ultimately didn't work out because the role that I guess that he wanted to give me was something I kind of didn't want, and so it just didn't work out. Like I said, obviously he liked me enough to give me a vote of confidence to Coach Locksley."

As for the Redskins gig, Hall reached out to the team once he heard Torrian Gray was interviewing for jobs outside the organization

"I interviewed for the defensive backs coaching position, and Jay was in on the meeting and Manusky, the DC," he said. "I was able to answer a lot of their questions, present kind of what I felt like I brought to the table as a coach. I don't want get into the particulars of kind of how that meeting went, but I felt like I did very, very well. I think those guys as well echoed the sentiments that I did very well, as well, too. That was very encouraging, because like I told them during it, 'This is my first time, so y'all bear with me.' But once I got in there and got to talking, it was easy to just be myself and just let it flow."

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