According to sources close to the Associated Press, the New York Jets will talk to former Pittsburgh Steelers coach Bill Cowher about their vacant coaching job.
From the Associated Press:
While no formal discussions have been scheduled yet, the team plans to speak soon with the former Super Bowl-winning coach, according to the person who requested anonymity because the individual was not authorized to discuss the search.
Cowher has also expressed interest in the job that opened Monday, the person said, when the Jets fired Eric Mangini after three seasons.
The Jets also will meet with New York Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo on Saturday, according to another person familiar with the coaching search. New York is also expected to interview a pair of in-house candidates: offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer and offensive line coach Bill Callahan, who also served as assistant head coach under Mangini.
Marty Schottenheimer, Mike Holmgren and Jim Fassel, names mentioned in various reports, aren’t believed to be on the Jets’ immediate radar.
Jets owner Woody Johnson made it clear that he prefers to keep football, business and coaching duties separate, so a candidate wanting complete control would be less likely to be hired. Any coach the Jets hire would have to fit into that structure.
The person told the AP that Cowher has not given the Jets the impression he must have total control of personnel.
From the New York Times:
One day after the Jets fired Coach Eric Mangini, the search for his replacement is centering on Bill Cowher, the former longtime coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers. But there are conflicting reports about Cowher’s interest in the job.
ESPN reported Tuesday that Cowher was interested but had told the team he wanted to bring in his own personnel director.
A team official said that Cowher was indeed interested, that the Jets’ power structure could be reorganized and that plans were in the works to speak to Cowher. The official was not permitted to comment publicly on the personnel matter.
But on Monday, Woody Johnson, the team’s owner, stood behind his general manager, Mike Tannenbaum. Asked if one person could simultaneously play the roles of general manager and coach, Johnson responded strongly.
“It’s too much,” he said. “There’s no way that you can do it, and really do it, because you’re always relying on somebody else. You may think that you have the power, but you can’t make those discerning decisions. There’s just too much work to do and be a coach.”
Cowher works for CBS as a football analyst, and two of his daughters live in the New York-New Jersey area. He coached the Pittsburgh Steelers to a Super Bowl championship following the 2005 season.
He has declined interview requests and recently told the Cleveland Browns he was not interested in their coaching vacancy.