We haven’t done one of these in a few days. So let’s catch up on a hiring season that has provided more January excitement so far than the playoffs with a little speed-round action.
Where to begin? Surely there are a few hot coordinators or assistants (not like that…settle down, Brent Musberger) who have emerged in the early days of this week to fill the five remaining head coach vacancies. Yep, Mike Singletary, Mike Holmgren, and Jon Gruden.
As always, this comes with the heavy disclaimer that the circulation of those names is currently based on the rampant January cycle of hearsay and speculation, which is much like the same late-April cycle. That especially applies to Gruden, since much of the rumored interest in his services is tied to the words of Ron Jaworski. Specifically, these words (via Sheil Kapadia):
“Jon has gotten a lot of discussion,” Jaws said during an interview with Mike Missanelli on 97.5 The Fanatic Monday. “It’s just not as public as some of the other ones. I spoke to Jon earlier, and we spoke about it. He’s had numerous meetings. He has told teams that he is not interested in certain jobs. There are jobs that he’s interested in, but no one at those teams has reached out to him, or they may even have a coach in place.”
Gruden is currently in his fifth season away from coaching after he was fired by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2008, and he seems quite comfortable in the Monday Night Football broadcast booth while repeatedly telling us how wicked awesome THIS GUY is, and how much THAT GUY is a football player. Prying him away from that will be difficult, but yesterday Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain-Dealer reported that after they whiffed on Chip Kelly, the Browns may have interest in Chucky. And then her report was quickly shot down by PFT’s Mike Florio. So surely that’s over with then.
But what of Holmgren, the other formerly really good coach and Super Bowl winner who hasn’t been a coach for a while? Well, the Chargers are reportedly showing some interest, according to Jason La Canfora, but they also intend to interview Bruce Arians, the Colts’ offensive coordinator. Arians has either interviewed or is slated to interview for nearly every remaining opening, which makes a lot of sense. He’s the steal of this hiring period, because this may be the only time in the history of the league when the coach of the year award winner is available for hire, which is a result of both Arians’ tremendous work in an interim role with the Colts this year, and the unique circumstances presented by Chuck Pagano’s illness and absence.
Lastly, Singletary is reportedly receiving consideration from the Bears, a front office that’s interviewed everyone after firing Lovie Smith (the candidate list currently sits at 13). Don’t pick up that ringing phone. It’s the Bears.
You know Singletary as the failed 49ers head coach who considers dropping his pants at halftime to be a legitimate motivational technique. He’s also pretty much a total dick. Evidence…
In Chicago, he’s a legend, and a hall of fame linebacker. But in reality, the current Vikings linebackers coach is still a horrid head coach, and his mere reported consideration for an opening shows that GM Phil Emery is beginning to become either desperate, or wayward, or both. Other candidates in Chicago include Montreal Alouettes coach Marc Trestman, Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell, Texans offensive coordinator Rick Dennison, and Packers offensive coordinator Tom Clements.
And with that, you’re mostly caught up on the notable carousel spinning for at least eight minutes. Until next time…
UPDATE: Like Cleveland, the Eagles also struck out on Kelly and were forced to reboot their search. Now, they’ll reportedly interview Lovie Smith Thursday.