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Bills Coaching Search Begins

Tom Donahoe - AP Photo Weiss Chances Hurt By Win? The Patriots win over Tennessee last might may hurt his chances on getting the Bills head coaching job. He is considered one of three candidates on the top if the list along with Mike Mularkey and Dick Jauron. Tom Donahoe has said he is willing to wait as long as it takes for the right candidate. The Problem is, if he has to wait until after the Super Bowl and decides then that Weis isn't the right candidate, he may lose out on other options. He would need to talk to Weis again because reports say he only had a short time with him because of time restraints and Weis did not get a chance to meet with Ralph Wilson. The longer the team waits also means they may lose out on top quality assistant coaches to round out their staff. Remember the weak staff Gregg Williams ended up with when he was hired in February.

Mularkey Says No To Oakland: Mike Mularkey turned down an interview request from the Oakland Raiders about their head coaching job. Reports say that it has nothing to do with him waiting for the Bills decison on their head coaching job.

Saturday January 10, 2003

Weis, Crennel Top List? Chris Mortenson on ESPN's NFL Countdown show today said that Charlie Weis and Romeo Crennel now top the Bills candidates list. He said Mike Mularkey is also very much in the running and Dick Jauron is alive but in the background of the race. He also said he doesn't think Jim Fassel will get the job. Tom Donahoe may be hoping for a Patriots loss tonight so he can get his man.

Gray Waiting On Bills: It appears unlikely that Jerry Gray will re-join Gregg Williams in Washington although other assistants may be chomping at the bit to go to the Nations' Capital. Gray says he's not interested in a downward move, which it would be in Washington. It has been reported that Williams is interested in Gray to be his secondary coach. Gray is waiting out the Bills head coaching process where he remains a head coaching candidate. It is also widely believed that whoever the new head coach is, if it isn't Gray, will be urged to keep him on as defensive coordinator. If that fails, Gray would likely go back to his alma mater, the University of Texas, as defensive coordinator there. Williams will likely fill the secondary coach position in Washington with Bills assistant Steve Jackson who, as we reported yesterday, was given permission to talk to the Redskins along with Special Teams Coordinator Danny Smith.

Mularkey To Interview In Oakland: The Bills may now have competition for one of their coaching candidates. The Oakland Raiders have received permission from the Pittsburgh Steelers to interview Offensive Coordinator Mike Mularkey. He is considered a possible favorite for the Bills' job. He has said he is very interested in the position in Buffalo and may wait to see how that turns out before interviewing in Oakland.

LeBeau In Pittsburgh Tuesday: Dick LeBeau will meet with Steelers Head Coach Bill Cowher on Tuesday to discuss their open defensive coordinator's position. He held that same position with Pittsburgh in 1995 and 1996. It appears LeBeau would still rather stay in Buffalo and would likely try to wait out the hiring process in Buffalo before committing to Pittsburgh. It is believed that if Dick Jauron gets the job in Buffalo he would like to keep LeBeau on as his assistant head coach.

Friday January 9, 2003

Redskins Given Permission: The Washington Redskins were given permission by the Bills to speak to two coaches currently under contract with the Bills. The two aren't the ones that have been mentioned. The Redskins can talk to Special Teams Coordinator Danny Smith and Third Down/Safties coach Steve Jackson. Earlier in the week it was rumored that Jerry Gray and Tim Krumrie had struck deals to join the Redskins but they have not been given permission to talk to the Redskins and are still under contract with the Bills like other assistants.

Coaching Frenzy: Bills fans everywhere are waiting for Tom Donahoe to decide on a head coach. He has conducted the most extensive search of the seven openings in the league. He is now analyzing the seven candidates and appears to be in no hurry to make a decision and has not set a timetable. It's time for Bills Daily readers to chime in. Since this is such a hot button issue we have put together our first poll. Voter for who you think should be the next Bills coach on our homepage.

Thursday January 8, 2004

Williams Top Paid DC: Talk about landing on your feet. Not only did Gregg Williams become the most sought after defensive coordinator candidate, he is now the highest paid defensive coordinator in the league. He will get $1.8 Million a year from Washington which is $800,000 more than he made his last season as a Bills head coach. Not bad for someone who had to take a step down after being let go by the Bills.

LeBeau To Pittsburgh? The Bills gave the Steelers permission to talk to Dick LeBeau about their open defensive coordinator position. It has been widely considered that LeBeau would be invited back to the Bills despite having only a one year deal and the uncertainty of the coaching situation. His going to Pittsburgh is still considered a longshot.

Modrak Likely To Stay: Tom Donahoe said that he thinks Tom Modarak is not interested in the Dolphins job and he anticipates that Modrak will be staying with the Bills. Modrak is involved with Donahoe and Ralph Wilson on deciding the next head coach. They are now evaluating the interviews with the seven candidates for the job.

Candidates List Set: It appears the Bills are done interviewing candidates besides a follow up with Mike Mularkey. The Steelers offensive coordinator said Tom Donahoe plans to finish their interview by phone today since they ran out of time. Donahoe said the list of seven candidates will be presented to Ralph Wilson and there is no timetable for a decision. Depending on which rumor you listen to the favorites could be Dick Jauron, Jim Fassel, Charlie Weis, or perhaps even Mularkey.

Wednesday Janary 7, 2003

Bills May Lose Krumrie: It appears now that Gregg Williams is in Washington as the defensive coordinator he is invading the Bills defensive coaching staff. A report out of Washington says that Tim Krumrie has left the Bills to join Williams' defensive staff. There is also a report, although not confirmed, that Jerry Gray will also join Williams in Washington as the secondary coach. The Bills are denying the reports. Gray has also been linked to the defensive coordinator position with the University of Texas.

Fassel A Flop? is reporting that the interview in Buffalo between the Bills and Jim Fassel did not go very well and Fassel has fallen out of the lead for the Bills head coaching job. The report says that Dick Jauron is now the favorite to get the job. Fassel appears to be losing out in Arizona as Dennis Green has been offered the job.

Williams Lands In DC: Gregg Williams was not out of work very long. He has signed to become the defensive coordinator with the Washington Redskins on the new staff led by head coach Joe Gibbs. Williams was highly sought after and interviewed with the Jets and Vikings. He was considered the top choice with the Jets and was set to interview with Tom Coughlin for the defensive coordinator's job with the Giants.

Mularkey Interviews Today: Mike Mularkey becomes the seventh and most likely final candidate to interview for the Bills head coaching job. As we reported yesterday, there was one candidate to interview today and that unnamed person is the Steelers offensive coordinator. Mularkey also interviewed for the Falcons head coaching job.

Tuesday January 6, 2003

One More To Go: Tom Donahoe said that he has one more interview scheduled for tomorrow. He would not elaborate on who that interview is with. The mystery person will be the seventh candidate for the job. Donahoe or Bills spokesperson Scott Berchtold would not say how the interview with Fassel went.

Fassel Open Minded: WGRZ-TV had an exclusive interview with Jim Fassel as he left town today. He said he has no frontrunner for his services and is keeping in open mind. He said it was a good day and that he has respect for the organization. He would not say either way if he had an offer from the Bills. He said the deadline for the end of the week that we reported earlier is not a strict one but he plans on knowing where he will coach next year sometime this weekend.

Fassel Interviews: Jim Fassel interviewed with Tom Donahoe in Buffalo today. Before he left town he set a deadline by the end of the week to sign a deal with a team. He is being considered as a top candidate in Buffalo, Arizona, and Washington. Some reports say the Washington situation does not look good right now. The top choice in Arizona appears to be Dennis Green but they do want to meet with Fassel one more time this week. Fassel's deadline means the Bills must decide if they want him bad enough to not wait for some of the other candidates like Crennel, Smith, and Weis to finish their current playoff runs.

Modrak Contemplating: The Dolphins are trying to end their search for a General Manager by the end of the week but Tom Modrak isn't cooperating. The two sides have talked but Modrak has yet to commit to an interview. He found out what the job entails and is thinking about whether or not he wants an interview. Randy Mueller, Tim Ruskell, and Phil Savage are the other main candidates for the position.

Monday January 5, 2003

Jauron, Gray Interview: As expected Dick Jauron became the fifth person to interview for the open head coaching position with the Bills. He was interviewed today by Tom Donahoe and joins candidates Lovie Smith, Romeo Crennel, Charlie Weis, and Jerry Gray who have talked to Donahoe. Gray interviewed earlier in the day. Jim Fassel appears to be the favorite and talked to Donahoe by phone today. As we reported earlier, he will interview tomorrow for the position. Rumors say that he may leave town with an offer in hand.

Weiss, Fassel Head List? Rumors continue to swirl regarding the coaching carousel in the NFL. Depending on which rumors you listen to, Jim Fassel or Charlie Weis now head the Bills candidate's list. Fassel has dropped out of the running for the Bears job and one league source says the Bills are readying an offer for him and may be close to a deal. That may be a bit hard to believe since he hasn't even interviewed yet. One person who did interview was Charlie Weiss. It is believed he had a good interview and Tom Donahoe came away very impressed with the well prepared Patriots Offensive Coordinator. The Bills cannot talk to him again until after the Patriots are out of the playoffs.

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