By Josh Katzowitz
Jerry Gray, the Titans defensive coordinator whose unit was the 18th best this season in yards allowed and eighth-best in points given up, likely will interview to replace Jim Caldwell in Indianapolis. The Tennessean reports the Colts have asked the Titans for permission to talk to Gray.
Gray was the defensive coordinator in Buffalo from 2001-05, and in two of those years (2003, 2004) the Bills were one of the top defensive teams in the league. He then was a secondary coach in Washington for four seasons before moving to Tennessee under coach Mike Munchak.
As a cornerback who played nine years in the NFL, Gray made four Pro Bowls.
“Jerry has a number of qualities that I think are assets for this role: he played the game, he coached a position group and he has coordinating experience,” Munchak said after he hired Gray before last season. “I respected him as a player and coach and he was someone that I knew right away that I wanted to talk to about the position. … He is a great teacher and a great person, and I think the players will respond well to his style.”
And if Gray gets the Indianapolis job, Munchak might be in a bind.
As ESPN’s Paul Kuharsky wrote earlier this month, “While the Titans' defense lacked the pieces to be a consistent unit, it was moving in the right direction in 2011. Players respond to Gray and respect him.
“If he leaves, there is no clear replacement on staff. Linebackers coach Frank Bush had a disastrous term as the Texans coordinator. Senior assistant Dave McGinnis lost his position job to Bush as the staff took shape and has been passed over the last two times the post opened.”
The Colts haven’t just been focusing on Gray, though. As Rapid Reporter Tom James writes, Indianapolis also has asked the Saints for permission to interview offensive coordinator Pete Carmichael. The Raiders also are set to interview Carmichael.
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