A process that was originally thought to involve just a small handful of candidates now includes quite a few more — and some are rather unsuspected candidates. Today three more names were thrown into the Raiders’ coaching search inquiry pot.
The first interview request that came up was for Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator, Marty Mornhinweg. This name will not bring about a lot of excitement from Raider fans. Mornhinweg is most well known for leading the Lions to a total of five wins over two whole seasons as their head coach. He got the job with the Lions in 2001 after four seasons as the 49ers’ offensive coordinator. After his two miserable years in Detroit, he went back to being an assistant. Since then, he has been with the Eagles and has been their offensive coordinator since 2006.
Mornhinweg has long been seen as a great offensive mind among the coaching ranks. The Eagles have had some of their best years offensively under his tutelage. However, he is not seen as a great game manager. Sound familiar? That is what was said about Hue Jackson.
If you want to give Mornhinweg the benefit of the doubt, it isn’t too difficult. His time as a head coach was a short one on a team that drafted poorly and was run even more poorly. It was also ten years ago. He has been the assistant head coach for the Eagles under head coach Andy Reid since 2004. Reid is known for being a very good game coach as well as a calming influence on his team. It stands to reason that Mornhinweg has learned a lot during his time there. And he could be worth giving another shot. That is what Reggie McKenzie is going to find out.
The other name that cropped up was another former failed head coach who has since laid low as an NFL coordinator – Mike Tice. Tice got his shot at being a head coach when he was named the interim head coach in Minnesota for the final game of the 2001 season. He was retained as the head coach the next season and remained in the position for four years. He was the offensive line coach for the Bears last season and was just promoted to offensive coordinator last week to replace the departed (now retired) Mike Martz.
During Tice’s four seasons as head coach in Minnesota, he had an even .500 record at 32-32. His Vikings had a winning record twice and made the playoffs once. He was .500 in the playoffs as well, going 1-1. An even .500 record is part of what got the last two Raider coaches fired.
The final name that cropped up today was the first Packer in whom McKenzie has been reported as showing interest. Jason LaCanfora reported the Raiders are interested in speaking with Packers’ offensive coordinator Joe Philbin. No word on whether an interview has been arranged as of yet. It could just be speculation on the part of LaCanfora, but it makes sense. Philbin has garnered interest from the Dolphins for their head coaching vacancy as well.
This makes six confirmed interviews and eight potential head coaching candidates thus far. Others to be interviewed include Todd Bowles, Dennis Allen, Mike McCoy, and Pete Carmichael, Jr, with potential candidates including Winston Moss and Dom Capers.
Expect to see several more candidates reveal themselves tomorrow. No telling how long until McKenzie’s “gut” tells him who his man will be.