Keyshawn Johnson nailed a big spike squarely on the head during ESPNs Sunday NFL Countdown when he voiced some exasperation at the seeming lack of play Lovie Smith is getting for head-coaching jobs.
Johnson was a little more understanding of the firing than Mike Ditka was but he scoffed at the NFLs lemming tendencies are head-shaking when you see the rush toward virtually any coach who has ever used the word offense in a complete sentence.
The Bears have IDd nine candidates, of which seven are offensive coaches and the other two from special teams. There has been some NFL fascination with Chip Kelly because of the Oregon coachs offensive pyrotechnics.
The most balanced Bears candidate at this point is Rick Dennison. As first reported by ESPN, the Bears asked for and received permission to interview the Houston Texans offensive coordinator, who also happens to have coached special teams and played linebacker for nine seasons with the Denver Broncos.
Smith interviewed for the Buffalo job but the Bills instead scrambled to hire Syracuses Doug Marrone, 48, whod won a bowl game this season and gotten the Orangemens program turned around in four years. He also has been an offensive coordinator with New Orleans and O-line coach with the Jets.
Scrambled is the apt term, because the Bills jumped to Marrone after Denver offensive coordinator Mike McCoy was on hold while he interviewed elsewhere, including Chicago.
You wonder if Indianapolis offensive coordinator Bruce Arians being hospitalized with flu and being unable to coach in the Colts playoff game against the Baltimore Ravens will hurt his stock. It shouldnt, but anyone whos ever applied for a job knows that you dont want to call in sick for the interview, and the Colts game with rookie quarterback Andrew Luck against Ray Lewis, Ed Reed, Terrell Suggs and Haloti Ngata is resume moment for Arians.
If the name of candidate Marc Trestman sounds familiar, its because Trestman was on a short list of candidates for Bears offensive coordinator in 2001 when the Bears needed a replacement for Gary Crowton. The problem, for Trestman and Chris Palmer, another leading option, was that Dick Jauron was viewed as on a one-year leash after two losing seasons and prospects wanted a multi-year contract for security in case Jauron was fired.
The Bears werent willing to go three years and instead went with promoting John Shoop. Trestman went on to Oakland and eventually to the Montreal Alouettes but Phil Emery was a Bears scout at the time that Trestman was under consideration.