Reports: Lions set to retain Glenn as coordinator, but at risk of losing Pleasant

Justin Rogers
The Detroit News

The Detroit Lions appear to be keeping their defensive coordinator, at least for one more season. According to multiple reports, the New Orleans Saints are planning on hiring Dennis Allen to replace Sean Payton as the franchise's head coach. 

Lions' coordinator Aaron Glenn had interviewed for that job last week, his second head coaching interview this offseason and third in two years. He was viewed as a strong contender for the Saints' opening because of his previous experience with the organization. 

Lions defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn saw Sunday's performance against the Ravens as a building block for his unit.

"I love AG," Lions coach Dan Campbell said at the Senior Bowl last week. "Listen, I do not want to lose AG, that's how much I think of him and what he's brought to us and the life he's given our defense and knowing where it's going to go. I'm just telling you the guy is going to be a home run as a head coach. He's passionate, he's smart, he's got a good feel of personnel, how to use his own guys."

Serving under Allen, New Orleans' defensive coordinator since 2015, Glenn played an integral role in turning around the unit as the team's defensive backs coach. He developed a number of young players and helped transform the Saints secondary into one of the league's best. 

In his first year as Detroit's defensive coordinator, Glenn's young group struggled, finishing near the bottom of the league in points and yards allowed. That said, the unit showed marked improvement from the previous year and finished the season strong, allowing 24.8 points per game over the final nine contests, compared to 30.5 the first eight. 

More: Former Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin getting promoted to Steelers DC

The Lions and Campbell will welcome his return, but there's a growing possibility he might be without one of his top lieutenants. The NFL Network reported Monday night that the Minnesota Vikings have requested permission to interview Detroit's defensive backs coach and passing game coordinator Aubrey Pleasant for their defensive coordinator vacancy. 

The Vikings are expected to name Los Angeles Rams offensive coordinator Kevin O'Connell the team's head coach following the Super Bowl and Pleasant worked with him in both Washington and Los Angeles before joining Detroit's staff this past year. 

Pleasant recently stepped in and filled Glenn's shoes, working as a coordinator while the Lions coached the American team as the Senior Bowl last week. With that opportunity, he got a chance to showcase his ability to lead a group while also calling plays. 

"I never really thought about anyone else looking at me in this position other than the people I'm working with," Pleasant said last week. "I would say that's my mindset, because the rest will take care of itself."