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NFL coach search news, January 4: Chuck Pagano extension, Hue Jackson interview request, Tom Coughlin steps down

A lot is happening each day this week with the NFL coaching hires, we'll recap everything here

Welcome to 2016 Coach Watch! Throughout the day there are about a gazillion articles going on about which coach is going where for what amount. It's pretty difficult to keep up with all the news throughout the day with school and work, so this handy guide will give you everything you need to know about what happened in the day. This will continue to post each evening during the week until things quiet down. The San Francisco 49ers will be a focus, but we'll throw in some other teams as well.

The State of the San Francisco 49ers:

With Jim Tomsula getting fired, 49ers CEO Jed York took the podium today on a solo outing; Trent Baalke was nowhere to be seen. What transpired was a 27-minute media gnashing. I really suggest giving this a watch if you watch any press conference this year. York appeared humbled, apologized for his mistakes (yes, he really did), and indicated the 49ers are going to get this right.

York also made a point to inform the media that Trent Baalke will remain as general manager of the team. This got some interesting questions regarding the state of the roster and what could happen if left in Baalke's hands. On that note, York also mentioned that Trent and his staff will be handling the hire of the coach--without him (Jed York). This was similar to the hiring last year, though at the end of the hiring process, any potential hires crossed the desk of Jed York in some way, shape, or fashion.

Trent Baalke spoke to the media later in the day and echoed the response about the process of the coach. He said Jed, Dr. John York and others were involved in the final decision of hiring Jim Tomsula. York and Baalke both stated they wouldn't tip their hands or let on to what they were looking for in a coach besides wanting someone with experience.

The Connections (so far):

That leaves us with some potential names thrown around. Matt Maiocco tweeted out that Trent Baalke said there are no in-house head coaching candidates, so those of you worried of a Tony Sparano or Eric Mangini hire can rest easy.  Chip Kelly threw in his hat to the 49ers coaching camp, but that's all we've learned throughout the day. Kelly was fired by the Philadelphia Eagles on December 29 after a 6-9 record for the 2015 season.  Chip Kelly would bring with him some college success but also an offense that never has seemed to quite work the way it should in the NFL. Fortunately for Kelly, he has Tom Gamble in the 49ers front office and the two have been known to work very well together. For what it's worth, Adam Schefter said the 49ers are, "At least likely to consider it".

New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton seems to be the big name the Niners may go after. Nothing has officially been said by either party on the record, however some tweets last night indicated that Payton may have or at least had interest in the job. Adam Schefter and Chris Mortensen have both said that one side, the 49ers, are expected to pursue Sean Payton and a tweet specifically from Ian Rapoport has any response on the other end:

Today, the San Diego Chargers confirmed they will be keeping Mike McCoy.

To get Payton, it was noted by Ian Rapoport that it will take around a 2nd round pick to land the Super Bowl winning coach in San Francisco.That may be a bit steep for some, or the right price. In any case, Payton won't come cheap, both in the pocketbook and in draft capitol. And we all know how the 49ers love having draft picks.

The final name to be linked to the 49ers is Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator and former Oakland Raiders head coach Hue Jackson. Baalke worked with Jackson while the two were in Washington and according to Kyle McLorg at Bay Area Sports Guy, Baalke does have interest in Jackson. Enough of an interest that the 49ers requested to interview Jackson. While there are some detractors to a Hue Jackson hiring given the troubles he had with the Raiders, Amy Trask, former Oakland Raiders general manager was quick to defend the head coach with some very heartwarming comments.

Beyond the 49ers, Jackson is expected to interview with the Miami Dolphins and the Cleveland Browns.

Other Candidates:

Mike Holmgren expressed interest in the 49ers job on The Rich Eisen Show. When he approached the 49ers in this same regard last year, he was told they were not interested and looking younger. The 49ers went on to hire Jim Tomsula. So far this year, Holmgren's interest has not gone any further than the topic on the show.

Coach Tracker:

Mike Shanahan was linked last year to the San Francisco 49ers head coaching job with Vic Fangio rumored to stay as his defensive coordinator. There has been no real news regarding Shanahan coming to San Francisco this year however, it has been noted he's being interviewed for the recent vacancy at the Miami Dolphins. The Dolphins fired Joe Philbin earlier this season.They have interviewed Mike Smith already and are set to interview Shanahan tomorrow. Shanahan also interviewed with the Dolphins on December 22nd, making this interview number 2.

Adam Gase, offensive coordinator for the Chicago Bears nearly landed the 49ers head coaching job last year. This year, he has one busy schedule. So far it's the usual suspects: Philly, Cleveland, and Miami. Given how things ended last year in his interviews with the 49ers, don't expect to see the 49ers come back on the board as a stop in that busy schedule.

Teryl Austin, Defensive Coordinator for the Detroit Lions will also have a busy schedule. He has interviews scheduled with the Browns, Dolphins, and "likely" Eagles according to Ian Rapoport. The Browns fired Mike Pettine yesterday. The 49ers are not a listed stop yet.

Doug Marrone, former head coach of the Buffalo Bills, and current offensive line/assistant coach is listed to meet with the Dolphins and the Browns.

Tennessee is set to interview Mike Mularkey, current interim head coach.

Late news from Adam Schefter has Cleveland requesting permission to interview New England Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia.

Expect to see the New York Giants pop up in Coach Watch much more tomorrow, as head coach Tom Coughlin announced he'd step down today.

And finally, don't expect to see the Indianapolis Colts pop up in Coach Watch again. They just announced they are extending Chuck Pagano.


  • New York
  • Cleveland
  • Miami
  • Philadelphia
  • San Francisco
  • Tennessee