NFL Coaching decisions heat up

With preparations for the NFL Draft coming quickly and free agency on the horizon, coaching vacancies around the NFL are expected to be filled quickly.

Detroit

Many league observers feel that Steelers' Assistant Head Coach/Offensive Line Russ Grimm will wind up being offered the head coach job from President and Chief Executive Officer Matt Millen after Pittsburgh's season is over.

Millen is looking for a disciplinarian type of head coach who can motivate his players to raise their level of play.

The two played together with Washington and Grimm is said to have learned a lot about offense under head coach Joe Gibbs and offensive line coach Joe Bugel.

Houston

Of all the candidates to fill the vacant head coach position, Denver offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak has been most impressive in the interview process and it's expected that he'll be named the new head coach once Denver is finished with the playoffs.

Kubiak turned down interviews over the last few years because he thought he wasn't ready but he now feels that he's ready to take the next step in his career. It doesn't hurt that he played his college ball at Texas A&M.

An interesting side note is that Houston has asked prospective candidates to break down USC RB Reggie Bush's game film.

New York Jets

The team has a list of six candidates (Jim Haslett, Donnie Henderson, Joe Vitt, Mike Martz, Eric Mangini, Mike Tice) to fill their vacant head coach job.

According to a league source, the Jets will likely offer Mangini the job provided his interview goes well. Officially, the team can't offer him the job to him until the Patriots are out of the playoffs.

Because Mangini would be one of the hot head coach candidates next year and would have many more choices of jobs, it's uncertain whether he would accept an offer from the Jets this year.

New Orleans

The team has an interesting group of candidates to fill the vacant head coach job.

Fresno St.'s Pat Hill, Sean Payton, Donnie Henderson, Mike Sherman, Mike Martz, and Russ Grimm.

They're looking for someone who can handle the working conditions and situation that the team has been under since the summer.

Henderson had an impressive first interview and is expected to get a second one soon.

Rams

According to a league source, the team had Washington Asst. HC – Defense Gregg Williams at the top of their list to fill the vacant head coach position. With him out of the mix, they have interviewed a bunch of different offensive and defensive assistants (at least 10) but don't look to be close to finding a replacement.

San Diego

If defensive coordinator Wade Phillips gets a head coach job this year, look for former Minnesota defensive coordinator Ted Cottrell to be at the top of the team's list to replace him.

Cottrell has extensive experience coaching the 3-4 defensive scheme.


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