Adam Schefter is reporting that former Browns offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski and former Rams head coach Scott Linehan are going to interview for the 49ers vacant offensive coordinator position.
Linehan is a guy we've heard discussed, but Chudzinski has not been discussed quite so much. Chudzinski was given a three year extension by the Browns prior to this past season and promptly saw their offense drop to near the bottom of most rankings. Looking at DVOA, in Chudzinski's first season the team rose from 31st (-18.5%) to 11th (6.9%). In his second season they dropped from 11th to 30th (-17.5%). Although they dropped in all categories, their rushing attack only dropped to 20th (I guess that's a positive?).
One interesting upside to Chudzinski is his work with Kellen Winslow. Vernon Davis and Winslow are different beasts, but having a physically gifted tight end could be an interesting situation and one reason Chudzinski would be interested in such a position. Furthermore, given his recent situation, he would certainly seem like a guy who would be around for at least a couple years.
As I come up with more information I'll include it, particularly from our Browns blogger.
FOOCH'S NOTE 3:40PM: MM has weighed in and really likes both options. About Chudzinski, he said:
As for Chudzinski, I've been on his bandwagon for more than a year. When it looked as if Mike Nolan's job was in jeopardy toward the end of the 2007 season, I began making phone calls about possible head-coaching candidates. Chudzinski is someone who checked out repeatedly as a "rising star."
He did a fantastic job in his first season (2007) with the Browns. The Ravens wanted to interview him for their head-coaching position last year, but he turned down their request to sign a lucrative contract extension with the Browns. Obviously, things did not go as smoothly this season, as the Browns struggled throughout the season with injuries and other problems.
The one concern with Chudzinski is that if he does a good job, he will immediately become a head-coaching candidate. But if he does a good job, will it be worth it to the 49ers to have had his services for a short period of time?
He considers him still a rising star. I suppose one season shouldn't ruin a person's stature. Look at all the coaching retreads that keep getting hired, after all. Chudzinski will definitely require some more research.