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Zach
01-03-2006, 02:21 AM
http://msn.foxsports.com/nfl/story/5215862

Sure, Black Monday was tough on Mike Martz, Mike Sherman and the other NFL head coaches that got fired.

Nobody enjoys getting cashiered, even if the severance pay is pretty sweet. Yanking the inspirational Lombardisms off always hurts. Lugging your personal belongings out of a football complex is a humiliating experience.
But look at the bright side: the mass firings created almost unprecedented opportunities for up-and-coming coaches. Out with the old, in with the new the industry must remain fresh.

Monday was a very good day for the hot offensive and defensive coordinators in the league. The hot-and-heavy romance was about to begin.

Many of these men were busy polishing up their resumes, scheduling haircuts and sending their suits out to the cleaners. Many of their wives were daydreaming about bigger houses, more powerful SUVs and real diamond jewelry.

The Rams, Vikings, Lions and Texans are currently sizing up NFL assistants to fill head coach vacancies. The Saints, Chiefs and Packers are also looking for new coaches, and both the Raiders and Bills could join the hunt soon enough.

Here is how we would rank the most coveted assistant coaches currently in play:


1. Ron Rivera, defensive coordinator, Bears
The Rams have already sought permission to chat with him during Chicago's bye week. So have the Vikings. The whole league is wowed by the Bears' defense; just watching them play causes your testosterone level to rise.


2. Gary Kubiak, offensive coordinator, Broncos
The Texans must revamp their sad-sack offense, so it's no surprise they will interview him this week. His ties to the Lone Star State don't hurt, either. Expect other teams to inquire about him as well.


3. Tim Lewis, defensive coordinator, Giants
He interviewed for the Falcons job that went to Jim Mora. He just turned 44, so he fits the mold of an up-and-comer. Michael Strahan and Co. rave about his efforts to restore their defensive roar.

"Tim is experienced, he's experienced success, he's an articulate leader and he's a great-looking guy," agent Bob LaMonte told the Newark Star-Ledger. What more does a man need to get ahead?


4. Jim Schwartz, defensive coordinator, Titans
His Tennessee teams have been consistently stout against the run. His coaching lineage traces back to Bill Belichick and his tutors include Williams and Jeff Fisher. His time has come.


5. Brad Childress, offensive coordinator, Eagles
He has been compared favorably to Mike Shanahan at a similar point in his career. The Browns took a long look at him after whacking Butch Davis. Donovan McNabb loves him. As for Terrell Owens, well, never mind.


6. Ken Whisenhunt, offensive coordinator, Steelers
There is nothing visionary with his offense, but other teams admire the rapid development of Ben Roethlisberger and Willie Parker on his watch. The Rams will consider him.


7. Cam Cameron, offensive coordinator, Chargers
He coaxed quarterback Drew Brees over the hump and developed an explosive offense for Marty Schottenheimer. His head coaching experience at Indiana University is a plus.


8. Russ Grimm, offensive line coach, Steelers
He is definitely in play, despite lacking coordinator status. He finished second to Lovie Smith for the Bears job. Count the Lions among the teams interested in him. His blue-collar demeanor would sell well in Motown and that slothful team needs an imposing head coach.


9. Scott Lenihan, Dolphins offensive coordinator
He helped rehabilitate running back Ricky Williams, against all odds, and he helped Sage Rosenfels work a miracle. Those are great selling points.


10. Jerry Gray, defensive coordinator, Bills
His five-year run as Buffalo defensive coordinator has produced strong results. Oddly, although he is a former Ram, he hasn't made that team's short list of preferred candidates.


11. Donnie Henderson, defensive coordinator, Jets
He cut his coaching teeth as a secondary coach on some great Ravens defenses. He is ready to get head coaching interviews, but perhaps not ready to get hired for one of these jobs.



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Here is how we would rank the former NFL head coaches
1. Pete Carroll
That five-year contract extension he just signed with USC will keep some wolves away from his door, but NFL owners are drooling. If the right team makes a suitably insane contract offer, he'd at least have to think about it, right?


2. Gregg Williams
He has rebuilt his stock as defensive coordinator for the Redskins. His previous head-coaching stint in Buffalo wasn't successful, but at least he'll know the drill. His reputation as a tactician is stellar and he'll come with Joe Gibbs' strong endorsement.


3. Al Saunders
While serving as the Chiefs offensive coordinator, he appeared to be Vermeil's heir apparent in Kansas City. And he will interview for the job this week. But team president Carl Peterson may elect to chase a hard-nosed, defensive-minded candidate instead like Jets coach Herman Edwards.

If Saunders moves on, the Lions could be interested.


4. Martz
Mad Mike ought to get some play, since he IS an offensive visionary. But he is wacky, too, so he'll have to convince general managers and owners that he can build and run an organization.


5. Jim Fassel
After biding his time with the Ravens, the former Giants head coach (58-53-1, one NFC title in seven seasons) could move back into play, perhaps in Minnesota. Vikings coach Zygmunt Wilf is a big Giants fan.


6. Steve Mariucci
Given his glib and upbeat demeanor, he ought to take a year off from coaching and explore opportunities in TV. He would be a wonderful talking head. The Lions owe him $11.5 million, so he doesn't need to rush into another bad gig.


7. Sherman
Prior to his 4-12 finish this season, his teams went 9-7, 12-4, 12-4, 10-6 and 10-6. That is an awfully good track record in today's NFL. Although he is as charismatic as cardboard, he certainly deserves another crack.


8. Jim Haslett
This high-strung dude needs a break after enduring a Year From Hell. He could take a year off or regroup as a defensive coordinator while awaiting another opportunity.



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Here is how we could rank some of the long-term assistant coaches:


1. Ted Cottrell, defensive coordinator, Vikings
He will get an interview, anyway, to replace his former boss Mike Tice. If that falls through, he won't have trouble staying in the league in some capacity.


2. Norm Chow, offensive coordinator, Titans
His fabulous work at USC, plus his indoctrination to the NFL at Tennessee, should make him a candidate. If Matt Leinart goes to the Saints, why not reunite him with his old coach?


3. Jim Bates, defensive coordinator, Packers
His successful five-year run as Dolphins defensive coordinator and his stint as interim head coach trump Green Bay's failure this season. Teams looking for a stern, veteran leader presence should at least consider him.


4. Mike Zimmer, defensive coordinator, Cowboys
As a fixture on the Dallas staff having worked for four different head coaches he doesn't really fit the mold of up-and-comer. Perhaps he needs to wear more glitter.


5. Mike Heimerdinger, offensive coordinator, Jets
Again, nothing fancy here but his NFL teams have always been able to run the ball. Guys with funny names always have a tough time getting a head coaching gig, though.



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And here is how we would rank the college coaches currently in play:


1. Kirk Ferentz, head coach, Iowa
The rumor mill linked him romantically to the Packers for some time now. His ties to Bill Belichick are magic to NFL teams. He had a solid six-year track record as an NFL assistant coach.


2. Pat Hill, head coach, Fresno State
He coached under Belichick, too, so he knows the secret handshake. He created a high-scoring collegiate offense, which will appeal to teams looking to add some life to their attack.


3. Bobby Petrino, head coach, University of Louisville
This former Jaguars offensive coordinator would be a good fit for the offensively challenged Texans.


4. Jeff Tedford, head coach, California
He runs a pro-style offense and developed a number of NFL quarterbacks, most recently Kyle Boller, Joey Harrington and David Carr. (After horrible starts to the 2005 season, Boller and Harrington have worked awfully hard the last few weeks to get their names back on his resume.)

oaklandhater
01-03-2006, 07:53 AM
Woot looks like its going to be AL or Herm.Guess I got nothing to look foward to again next season :(

jspchief
01-03-2006, 07:58 AM
8-10 coaching positions open and only about two viable minority choices.

Jesse Jackson is going to have a field day with this.

Frosty
01-03-2006, 08:13 AM
7. Cam Cameron, offensive coordinator, Chargers

He coaxed quarterback Drew Brees over the hump and developed an explosive offense for Marty Schottenheimer. His head coaching experience at Indiana University is a plus.

This guy is pretty high on my wishlist. Clearly knows how to develop quarterbacks and knows how to use the tight end.

Cameron Bio (http://www.chargers.com/team/coachbio_cameron.cfm)

htismaqe
01-03-2006, 08:19 AM
Jim Schwartz, darkhorse candidate.

MOhillbilly
01-03-2006, 08:36 AM
Jerry Gray- i like this guy i like his style (yeah they had a down year) but he is young.

Attitude&Effort

Count Alex's Losses
01-03-2006, 08:38 AM
Jim Schwartz, darkhorse candidate.

I see your Schwartz is as big as mine...

http://www.dvd.net.au/movies/s/05627-4.jpg

siberian khatru
01-03-2006, 08:53 AM
Jim Schwartz, darkhorse candidate.

Exactly what I thought, too. It just leaped out.

oaklandhater
01-03-2006, 08:53 AM
I see your Schwartz is as big as mine...

http://www.dvd.net.au/movies/s/05627-4.jpg


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I am your father's brother's nephew's cousin's former roommate.