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Tag:Brian Billick
Posted on: January 15, 2012 11:11 am
Edited on: January 15, 2012 3:43 pm
 

Falcons hire Dirk Koetter as new OC

Dirk Koetter has been hired as Atlanta's offensive coordinator (US Presswire).By Josh Katzowitz

Falcons coach Mike Smith and former Jaguars offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter will be reunited as the Falcons announced the hiring of Koetter as their offensive coordinator on Sunday.

Koetter replaces Mike Mularkey, who was hired as Jacksonville’s head coach.

"I am very pleased to add Coach Koetter as our offensive coordinator," Smith said in a statement released by the team.  "Dirk is a veteran offensive coach who will bring years of NFL experience as an offensive coordinator as well as a fresh set of ideas to our offense. He is bright, he understands the intricacies of the vertical passing game, but he also wants to be able to run the football which is very important in the NFL.

"I look forward to working with Dirk and have tremendous confidence that he will be a great addition to our team and our coaching staff."

Koetter beat out an apparent interview list that included Brian Billick, Brian Schottenheimer and Packers quarterback coach Tom Clements in order to win the job from his old Jacksonville mate.

Koetter was hired as Jacksonville's offensive coordinator in 2007. He worked with Smith for one year. Smith was the Jaguars' defensive coordinator before he became Atlanta's head coach in 2008.

While Koetter’s offense didn’t impress this season -- even with the league’s leading rusher, Maurice Jones-Drew, Jacksonville finished last in the league in yards gained and 28th in points scored -- the Jaguars have been better under Koetter in years past. Not great, mind you. But closer to league average as opposed to league worst.

At the very least, Koetter will get to work with a franchise quarterback for the first time as an offensive coordinator, after spending his previous years dealing with David Garrard from 2007-10 and the disappointing rookie Blaine Gabbert last year. Matt Ryan will be quite an upgrade from those two.

Koetter inherits an offense blessed with established starters such as quarterback Matt Ryan, running back Michael Turner, tight end Tony Gonzalez and receivers Roddy White and Julio Jones. With the exception of Jones, who was a breakout rookie in 2011, all those playmakers, plus fullback Ovie Mughelli, have been Pro Bowl selections.

But Atlanta fans shouldn’t expect a huge change in offensive philosophy. As NFL analyst Adam Caplan notes, Murlakey and Koetter run a similar style of offense.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, Like Us on Facebook, subscribe to our NFL newsletter, and while you're add it, add our RSS Feed.
Posted on: January 12, 2012 3:15 pm
 

Report: Falcons looking at Schottey, Billick

By Josh Katzowitz

While we speculate about whether former Jets offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer would join his father if Marty Schottenheimer got the Buccaneers head coaching job, another potential job has emerged for the younger Schottey.

According to NFL.com’s Jason La Canfora, Schottenheimer is on the list to be interviewed for Mike Mularkey’s old job as the Falcons offensive coordinator.

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While Schottenheimer is set to interview for the open University of Alabama offensive coordinator position as well, Atlanta also appears interested in Super Bowl-title winning coach Brian Billick, former Jaguars offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, and Packers quarterback coach Tom Clements.

Assuming Billick wouldn’t want that job (and assuming that if Billick did want the job, the Falcons wouldn’t want to pay the salary Billick would desire), Koetter seems like a decent option. Although the Jaguars offense was a disaster this year when running back Maurice Jones-Drew wasn’t running the ball, Atlanta coach Mike Smith and Koetter worked together in Jacksonville.

Clements, meanwhile, was apparently a candidate for the Penn State job that ultimately went to Patriots offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien.

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Posted on: January 7, 2012 4:16 pm
 

For the gambler in you, wild card edition

By Josh Katzowitz

Each week, we’ll take the best -- and most clever -- odds collected by Bovada for the upcoming week and give our take. This is important stuff, perhaps the most important post you’ll read all week. Because if you can’t lose money while watching a game in which you have absolutely no effect, what’s the point of watching sports at all?

Who will be the next head coach of the Buccaneers?    

Mike Sherman 8/5

Brian Billick 2/1

Rob Chudzinski 3/1

Mike Mularkey 3/1

Bill Cowher 10/1

I guess the big question is whether the hiring of Sherman would excite the Buccaneers fanbase? Considering his Texas A&M teams were so mediocre, does that wipe away the successes he had with the Packers when Brett Favre was in his prime? I mean, wouldn’t anybody else on the above list be more exciting than Sherman? Not that fan excitement is the biggest factor on hiring a coach, but I’m not sure I see Sherman as the guy. That said, I think I’d go with Mularkey, though it is more of a longshot.

Who will be the next head coach of the Rams?   

Jeff Fisher 1/1

Field 5/7

Go with Fisher. That Rams job could be a good one for him.

How many Wild Card teams will win this weekend?        

0 10/1

1 9/5

2 7/4

3 4/1

4 30/1

The Steelers will beat the Broncos. The Bengals will beat the Texans. The Falcons will beat the Giants. The Lions will lose to the Saints. So, I’d go with 3 and make some money.

Will a wild card team win the Super Bowl?       

Yes 6/1

No 1/10

Does anybody see the Falcons, Lions or Bengals winning the Super Bowl? Of course not. But the Steelers are a different story. If Ben Roethlisberger is healthy enough and Isaac Redman plays well enough at running back and that defense doesn’t get old overnight, Pittsburgh could make a run. And if you think so, give “yes” a shot. Otherwise, at 1/10, this isn’t worth a bet.

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Posted on: December 17, 2011 5:33 pm
Edited on: December 29, 2011 5:28 pm
 

For the gambler in you, week 15

Potential Miami coachs

By Josh Katzowitz

Each Saturday, we’ll take the best -- and most clever -- odds collected by Bovada for the upcoming week and give our take. This is important stuff, perhaps the most important post you’ll read all week. Because if you can’t lose money while watching a game in which you have absolutely no effect, what’s the point of watching sports at all?

Will the Miami Dolphins hire one of these high profile coaches (Bill Cowher, Jon Gruden, Jeff Fisher, Brian Billick, Tony Dungy)?       
  
Yes -200

No +150

No, they’re going to go with a “young Don Shula” and none of the aforementioned qualify. Billick might have some interest, but I think the Dolphins might go with a top-notch assistant.

Who will be the head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs for Game 1 of the 2012 regular season?

Romeo Crennel 2/1       

Josh McDaniels 5/2       

Kirk Ferentz 3/1       

Jeff Fisher 7/2       

Bill Cowher 7/1      
 
My brain wants to say Josh McDaniels, but my heart says Crennel. Actually, I think McDaniels wouldn’t be a good choice, and I think Crennel could become of the league’s better coaches if he gets another opportunity. I’d go with Crennel, because Ferentz never goes anywhere and Fisher and Cowher won’t want a personality like general manager Scott Pioli hanging over them.

Who will have more turnovers in the game Week 15?

Tom Brady (NE) QB +145    

Tim Tebow (DEN) QB -175    

Unless you’re a pirouetting ballerina like Chicago’s Charles Tillman on his amazing interception of Tebow last week, Tebow rarely turns over the ball. Neither does Brady, but Denver’s defense is better than New England’s unit. I’ll go with Brady on this bet.

Tim Tebow -- completion percentage Week 15?          

Over/Under 49%     

On the season, Tebow is at 48.5 percent, but the Patriots defense is allowing opposing quarterbacks to complete 63.7 percent of their passes. I’d go with over, especially if the Broncos are close in the second half.

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Posted on: December 16, 2011 12:36 pm
Edited on: December 16, 2011 1:26 pm
 

Brian Billick expresses interest in Dolphins gig

By Will Brinson

Brian Billick sounds interested in taking the rock from Stephen Ross.  (Getty Images)

The Miami Dolphins coaching search won't be completed until after the season ends, but as expected, the Dolphins will contact all "the big names" before the season ends. At least one of those big names -- Brian Billick -- expressed interest in the position.

NFL Coaching Rumors

Billick, currently an analyst with FOX and the NFL Network, was asked directly on Thursday if he was interested in the job.

"Yeah," Billick said, per Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald. "The Dolphins are a marquee franchise. But at the end of the day, it’s the structure of what they put together. It has to be a partnership between the head coach, general manager and ownership with a very specific vision.

"The Dolphins are probably a long way from formulating their plans."

Billick also made a couple of interesting points, perhaps as analyst. Or perhaps not. For one, he said it's "a GM's league," stating that in order to be successful in the NFL, you have to have a "marriage" between coach and general manager. Obviously Jeff Ireland is still GM in Miami.

This job, frankly, makes a lot of sense for Billick if he can get along with Ireland.

He's a big enough name to satisfy Stephen Ross' hunger for making news, he's won a Super Bowl before so he's clearly had success and he's an offensive-minded coach, which is what the Dolphins need right now.

There's the presence of Mike Nolan, once Billick's defensive coordinator in Baltimore, on the staff already. Then there's the quarterback situation -- Billick had success with mediocre quarterbacks (Trent Dilfer anyone?) with the Ravens, so it's not inconceivable that either Chad Henne or Matt Moore could be successful under Billick.


But given the likelihood of the Dolphins high pick, Billick could actually get a shot at redemption through developing a quarterbacks of his own. The Kyle Boller experiment made the Hindenburg look like a perfectly executed landing and surely that eats at Billick in terms of how it reflects on his legacy as a coach.

Going to Miami would give him a shot at (potentially) grooming someone like Matt Barkley or Robert Griffin, III.

But he'll have to beat out other candidates to get there, first. Jackson also reports that the Dolphins are contacting or have contacted both CBS Sports analyst Bill Cowher and former Titans coach Jeff Fisher.

Billick said on NFL Network's Total Access Thursday, however, that he has not been contacted. But if he keeps making nice statements about Miami, and the Dolphins don't receive mutual interest from Fisher and Cowher (Fisher said he'll "listen to anyone," while Cowher has repeatedly said he's not returning to coaching), there's a pretty good chance he'll hear from Ross at some point.

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Posted on: December 15, 2011 1:43 pm
Edited on: December 29, 2011 5:28 pm
 

Marino: Cowher won't coach; Fins talk to Peterson

Dan Marino doesn't think Bill Cowher will coach in '12. Meanwhile, Miami is reportedly talking to Carl Peterson. (Getty Images)

By Ryan Wilson

The Dolphins fired Tony Sparano Monday. At 4-9, Miami's season is over and owner Stephen Ross decided to part ways now, in mid-December, presumably to get a head start on finding his next coach. One that will either be "a young Don Shula" or an already established big-name veteran of NFL sidelines.

In both cases, the usual suspects were mentioned, from offensive coordinators Jay Gruden (Bengals) and Brian Schottenheimer (Jets), or even Josh McDaniels, who coached the Broncos in 2009-10 and now serves as the offensive coordinator in St. Louis. To Super Bowl winners like Brian Billick, Bill Cowher and Jon Gruden.

On October 30, Cowher, who currently serves as an NFL analyst for CBS' The NFL Today, addressed reports that he had been approached about his interest in the Dolphins gig. "I am here to say to you today: I do not plan on coaching next year. I love where I work, more importantly, I enjoy the people that I work with up here. So I can put all this speculation to rest and if I have to repeat this in December again, I will."

On Wednesday, Dan Marino, the Hall of Fame Dolphins quarterback who now works with Cowher at CBS, spoke about his colleague's coaching future.

"I would love to see him be the Dolphins' coach or if he wanted to coach again because that would be great for the NFL, but I don't think his mind-set is that he wants to coach again," Marino told the team's official website (via NFL.com).

"And he may change that over time now, but my feeling is that, you know, he's a pretty straightforward ... guy that tells the -- kind of -- the truth most of the time, I would say -- or no, all the time -- and he said on TV that he doesn't have any plans of coming back, and I believe him."

On Thursday, the Miami Herald's Armando Salguero sounded similarly pessimistic that Cowher would be coaching in 2012 ("Not necessarily") or for the Dolphins ("I keep hearing from people in NFL circles that he will not.")

And now there are reports that the Dolphins are talking with former Chiefs general manager Carl Peterson about joining the organization in an executive position.

“Both want to make it work,” an NFL source said told the Herald's Barry Jackson. “Ross wants more management experience” in the organization.

Also worth mentioning: Peterson has ties to Cowher.

On October 26, seven weeks before Sparano was fired, the Palm Beach Post's Hal Habib wrote about the possibility of Cowher coming to South Beach.
If Cowher believes the time is right -- and Miami dismisses coach Tony Sparano -- it's conceivable that former Chiefs general manager Carl Peterson would facilitate a deal with the Dolphins.

Peterson is a business associate and longtime friend of both Dolphins owner Stephen Ross and [former NFL coach Dick] Vermeil. Peterson gave Cowher his first playing contract and helped add Cowher to the Chiefs' coaching staff under Marty Schottenheimer in 1989.

"I know that Carl Peterson has great admiration for Bill Cowher," Vermeil said.
And what would be the Dolphins' fallback plan if they couldn't land Cowher, Gruden or Billick? According to Jackson, it might be LSU coach Les Miles. Except that Miles has already issued a "Thanks, but no thanks" statement.

“He wanted everyone to know that he is not interested in the Miami job,” LSU spokesman Michael Bonnette said.

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Posted on: December 8, 2011 10:56 am
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Posted on: December 8, 2011 10:55 am
Edited on: December 8, 2011 10:58 am
 

Top Ten with a Twist: Potential head coaches

Zimmer (US Presswire).

By Josh Katzowitz

It’s getting to be about that time. Christmas? Yes, of course. Hannukah? Naturally. Festivus? It depends on your syndicated TV viewing habits. The carousel of coaches who are fired and hired, changing the courses of several franchises for the foreseeable future? Abso-freakin-lutely.

Personally, I hate to see any coach drawing the pink slip, but as Bum Phillips once said, “There’s two kinds of coaches, them that's fired and them that's gonna be fired." Jack Del Rio knows of what Phillips speaks -- he’s already been asked to vacate the Jaguars premises. And there will be plenty more firings to come.

As colleague Will Brinson pointed out in this week’s Sorting the Sunday Pile, at least seven coaches (Steve Spagnuolo, Andy Reid, Jim Caldwell, Raheem Morris, Tony Sparano, Todd Haley and Norv Turner) are on the hot seat, and that means there’s a strong possibility a whole mess of new coaches will be needed. Like last year, when I presented my list of potential coaches*, many of the candidates are career assistants who have never had a chance at a head coaching slot. Some you’ve seen in this role before. All, though, deserve a chance --- or another chance -- to run a team of their own. And who knows, maybe they’d be the one to turn around a franchise in need of a jump-start.

*Only two from last year’s list made it this list (Cowboys defensive coordinator Rob Ryan and Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer), and with Leslie Frazier, Jim Harbaugh and John Fox in new jobs, I’ve also dropped candidates like Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell and Ravens offensive coordinator Cam Cameron from consideration.

10. Bruce Arians: I had Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau on the list last year, though I figured that’s not going to happen at this point, but why shouldn’t teams take a look at Arians, Pittsburgh’s offensive coordinator? He was the head coach at Temple in the 1980s -- his record is an unshiny 21-45 -- but the paradigm shift made by the team since he’s been offensive coordinator is impressive. The Steelers are no longer a smashmouth, pound-the-rock offense. No, with Ben Roethlisberger and a trio of talented young receivers, the Steelers have entered the 21st century with their offense. There was talk Arians was a contender for the Ole Miss job, and it sounds like these people also would be rooting for Arians to get a head coaching job.

9. Joe DeCamillis: Before you say, “Why in the hell would you hire a special teams coach to be your head coach?” remember that John Harbaugh followed a similar path -- he spent nine years as the Eagles special teams coach and didn’t spend one second as a coordinator -- and it seems to have worked out OK for the Ravens. Plus, as CBSSports.com Pete Prisco said in a recent chat, DeCamillis, the Cowboys special teams ace, is organized and passionate. And if Prisco says he’s OK, it must be true.

8. Rob Chudzinski: He hasn’t spent much time as an NFL offensive coordinator, but he’s performed his finest work this year. Sure, he has some talent on his hands (Cam Newton and Steve Smith, obviously), but the work he’s done with Newton this season has been impressive. It’s difficult to remember this now, but Newton was considered a raw specimen with only one year of major college football before the Panthers took him No. 1 in the draft. But with Chudzinski’s help, Newton oftentimes plays amazing football for a rookie. It’s doubtful anybody will take a chance on Chudzinski at this point, but he’s one to keep an eye on in the future.

7. Chuck Pagano: While the Ravens offense has been in a state of flux this season, there’s little question about the effectiveness of Baltimore’s defense, which is ranked third in the league in points allowed and yards. Pagano is only in his first season as a coordinator, taking over this season for Greg Mattison, but the Ravens have been more effective this year (they were 10th in the league in yards in 2010). Pagano might need more seasoning, but he’s a guy who could ride Baltimore’s wave, particularly if the Ravens go deep into the playoffs, into a possible new job.

6. Brian Billick: There are plenty of reasons not to hire Billick. Like he said recently, he’s not young and he’s not cheap. But if you’re not necessarily looking to hire somebody for the next three decades and you have some money to spend, why wouldn’t you take a look at Billick? Yes, he’s pompous (though very good while being interviewed, and I like him on the NFL Network), but he’s also confident in his abilities. As well he should be. In nine years in Baltimore, he went 80-64, and you might remember that he won a Super Bowl title. It would take a special owner to turn to Billick, but I think it could be a very good choice.

5. Wade Phillips: The job Phillips has done in Houston this year has convinced me that Phillips deserves another chance at a head coaching job. Obviously, things didn’t end well in Dallas -- do they ever with Jerry Jones, though? -- but did you know he has a better winning percentage (.573) than Jeff Fisher (.542) and Brian Billick (.556)? And that in his nine full seasons as a head coach, he only had one losing record? There’s no doubt that Phillips knows what he’s doing as a defensive coordinator, and we know Phillips can win as a head coach as well. He’s deserving of another chance.
Ryan
4. Rob Ryan: This is what I wrote last year: “We need – I mean, we NEED – another Ryan brother as a head coach in the NFL. Aside from being the most entertaining coach out there today – publically, at least – Rex Ryan has done a wonderful job turning the Jets into Super Bowl contenders. Now, Rob Ryan, the Browns (now Cowboys) defensive coordinator, needs to get his chance. With the marked improvement in Cleveland, does Ryan deserve the shot? Probably not at this point. But how awesome would it be if somebody gave him a job?” Indeed Josh from 2010, it would be pretty awesome.

3. Russ Grimm: He was finally elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame last year as a player. Now he deserves his own team to run. He was nearly selected to follow Bill Cowher in Pittsburgh -- and some believe he was offered the job before the Steelers rescinded the offer and gave it to Mike Tomlin -- and for now, Grimm is an assistant head coach to Ken Whisenhunt in Arizona. You’d think Grimm would get his chance eventually, but he has to wonder how much longer he’ll have to wait.

2. Jeff Fisher: If you were going to hire a former head coach and you had an infinite amount of money to woo even the most resistant of people, you might go with Bill Cowher as the first choice. But my second choice probably would be Fisher. For 17 seasons with the Oilers/Titans, he recorded a 142-120 record, and he came ever so close to a Super Bowl victory. Aside from Cowher, I’m not sure there’s another former head coach out there that would command as much instant respect as Fisher.

1. Mike Zimmer: After a one-year slip-up, when the team was ranked 24th in the NFL in points allowed, the Bengals, once again, are one of the top units in the league. This, even after losing top cornerback Johnathan Joseph to the Texans and after failing to re-sign starting linebacker Dhani Jones. Zimmer has received effective play from youngsters Carlos Dunlap and Geno Atkins, and though there are no legit stars on defense, somehow Zimmer keeps making the case why somebody (anybody?!?) should give him a job. It’s time for Zimmer to have his shot.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com