Ed Donatell

Coach Updates: Eagles, Raiders, Bucs, Fewell

We’ve already seen one club make a defensive coordinator hire today, as the 49ers promoted Eric Mangini from tight ends coach to DC. Let’s take a look at some position coach hires and news from around the league…

  • The Eagles are expected to add Boston College offensive coordinator Ryan Day as their quarterbacks coach, according to Adam Caplan of ESPN (Twitter link). Day, who’s been at BC for nine years, will replace Bill Musgrave, who left to take the Raiders’ OC position. Day has a history with Eagles HC Chip Kelly, as Day played under and coached with Kelly at New Hampshire.
  • The Raiders have also found a new QB coach, as they are set to hire Bills quarterbacks coach Todd Downing, per Caplan (on Twitter). Downing also interviewed for roles with the Browns and Buccaneers, according to Caplan.
  • Not to be outdone, the Buccaneers have become the third team to hire a new QBs coach, as they’ve brought in Mike Bajakian to fill their vacancy, reports Roy Cummings of the Tampa Bay Tribune (Twitter link). Bajakian, previously the offensive coordinator at the University of Tennessee, worked under Tampa Bay head coach Lovie Smith with the Bears. The Bucs have also added ex-Falcons assistant Andrew Weidinger as an offensive quality control coach, writes Greg Auman of the Tampa Bay Times.
  • Ex-Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell has an interview lined up with the 49ers, according to Dianna Marie Russini of NBC4 (via Twitter). San Francisco just hired Mangini, so Fewell is presumably a candidate for the Niners’ DB coach job, as Cam Inman of the Mercury News tweets.
  • Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com expects (Twitter link) that Falcons assistant offensive line coach Wade Harman will remain on staff as the tight ends coach; as McClure notes, Harman held that same role in Baltimore from 1998-2013.
  • Former 49ers secondary coach Ed Donatell has accepted the same position with the Bears, but as Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com writes, Donatell might have missed out on other opportunities in the past. In each of the last two offseasons, San Francisco blocked Donatell from accepting interview requests from the Buccaneers and the Saints, per Maiocco.

NFC East Notes: Murray, Washington, Fangio

Retaining free agents Dez Bryant and DeMarco Murray isn’t an either/or proposition for the Cowboys, as David Moore of The Dallas Morning News writes. The two aren’t pitted against each other in the financial ring. The question is whether the Cowboys can keep Murray and still have enough room under the salary cap to retain its other key free agents and make needed upgrades to the defensive side of the ball. “Obviously it’s tough when you got a guy like Dez and DeMarco up at the same time and you’ve already paid a guy like Tony Romo and Tyron Smith,’’ executive vice president Stephen Jones said. “We’ve really got to manage our resources and this will be a challenge.’’ More from the NFC East..

  • Last night, it was reported that Vic Fangio passed on Washington‘s defensive coordinator vacancy over their insistence on keeping secondary coach Raheem Morris over his own choice, Ed Donatell. However, Dianna Marie Russini of NBC4 (on Twitter) hears that candidates for the opening were told they can bring in any assistants they prefer.
  • Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (on Twitter) hears that Washington could still end up changing secondary coaches and it’s hardly guaranteed that Morris will remain in that role.
  • New Washington defensive coordinator Joe Barry spoke with reporters, including Rich Tandler of CSNWashington.com, about the virtues of the 3-4 scheme and the versatility that it offers.
  • Tarik El-Bashir of CSNWashington.com pressed the rewind button on the 2013 draft to examine Washington cornerback David Amerson. Amerson showed promise in his rookie season but regressed as a sophomore.
  • In a chat with readers, David Moore of The Dallas Morning News touched on whether the Cowboys will be able to find a strong pass rusher with pick No. 27.

East Notes: Cowboys, Romo, Fangio

The Cowboys face a tough decision on whether to bring back right tackles Doug Free and Jermey Parnell, as Brandon George of The Dallas Morning News writes. Free started eleven games for the Cowboys in 2014. Parnell started seven, including the two playoff games while Free was out with injuries. “I think Jermey played really well and I think a lot of teams will throw on the tape and watch him play and probably a lot of people will consider him a starter,” Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said. “So we’ll have to make a tough decision there with Doug and Jermey. Hopefully we’ll at least keep one of them.” More from the East divisions..

  • The Cowboys will use some trickery with Tony Romo‘s contract to carve out extra cap room this offseason, writes David Moore of The Dallas Morning News. Romo is scheduled to make $17MM in 2015 with a whopping $27.7MM cap hit. However, Dallas will convert a large portion of that salary into a signing bonus, allowing the QB to get the money in a lump sum and allowing the team to break it up and spread it out over the remainder of his contract.
  • Michael C. Wright of ESPN.com (on Twitter) hears that Vic Fangio wanted to bring Ed Donatell with him to Washington, but they wanted to keep Raheem Morris instead. As a result, Wright hears, Fangio passed on Washington and joined the Bears.
  • Mike Jones of the Washington Post (on Twitter) hears that Washington wanting to keep Morris wasn’t a sticking point for Fangio.
  • Running backs coach Anthony Lynn has been plucked from the Jets to join Rex Ryan‘s staff with the Bills, according to Kimberly Jones of WFAN (on Twitter). He impressed in offensive coordinator interviews, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (on Twitter). Rapoport expects Lynn to get more consideration next year.
  • Doug Marrone‘s shocking departure from the Bills earlier this month left the majority of his assistant coaches out of jobs, but at least one of Marrone’s former position coaches doesn’t have any hard feelings toward his old boss. “That’s the business. He’s taking care of himself, his family. That’s the No. 1 thing you do as a man, all right?Fred Pagac, who served as linebackers coach for the Bills last season, told Mike Rodak of ESPN.com. Pagac, 62, went on to say that he’d work for Marrone “tomorrow,” given the opportunity.
  • Former Vikings tight end coach Jimmie Johnson is expected to join Todd Bowles‘ staff as the new Jets tight ends coach, according to Manish Mehta of the Daily News (on Twitter). Johnson was with Minnesota from 2006 through 2013.

NFC North Notes: Raiola, Bears, Zimmer

The latest out of the NFC North, where Adam Gase has reunited with John Fox..

  • Longtime Lions center Dominic Raiola confirmed today that the team has told him he won’t be back for the 2015 season. Raiola added that he’s “obviously disappointed” by the news, tweets Tim Twentyman of DetroitLions.com.
  • The Bears announced (on Twitter) that they have reached agreement with Ed Donatell to become their new defensive backs coach. He replaces Jon Hoke, who has been let go. Donatell was released from his Niners contract at the same time as new defensive coordinator Vic Fangio, and the duo was widely viewed as a package deal.
  • There’s still a possibility that the Bears could have a holdover or two from Marc Trestman‘s old staff, according to Brad Biggs of the Chicago Tribune (on Twitter). Not every assistant was released from his contract following the firing of Trestman and others.
  • The Vikings have one hire to make to fill out their coaching staff for the 2015 season, but it appears the rest of the group is intact for the long haul, as Ben Goessling of ESPN.com writes. Coach Mike Zimmer said the Vikings plan to extend the contracts of most of their assistant coaches through the 2016 season. When asked about his own deal, Zimmer said that it runs beyond the 2016 season.

Luke Adams contributed to this post.

Coach Notes: Capers, Fangio, Bills, Kubiak

Packers defensive coordinator Dom Capers is not planning on retiring anytime soon. The 64-year-old has had to work some overtime since he joined the organization in 2009, as the team’s made the playoffs in each of his six seasons. However, the former Panthers and Texans coach isn’t tiring.

“I would like to coach as long as I enjoy it and feel I have something to offer,” Capers told Bob McGinn of the Journal Sentinel“If I didn’t feel I have something to offer I wouldn’t do it anymore.

“I’m enjoying it. My health’s excellent. You can talk to anybody here… who spends the most hours here? And I’d like to think (I have something to offer).”

Other coaching notes from the around the league:

  • Following reports that the Bears had requested permission to interview Vic Fangio, Dianna Marie Russini of NBC4 in D.C. tweets that the team will indeed meet with the former 49ers defensive coordinator. Matt Barrows of The Sacramento Bee tweets that Fangio will then travel to meet with Washington this evening.
  • In the same tweet, Barrows notes that former 49ers defensive backs coach Ed Donatell will likely follow the coordinator wherever he goes.
  • Aaron Kromer has signed a two-year deal with the Bills to become the team’s offensive line coach, according to ESPN’s John Clayton (via ESPN.com’s Mike Rodak on Twitter). The former Bears offensive coordinator was fired in late December.
  • Patrick Saunders of The Denver Post says Gary Kubiak is the right choice for the Broncos head coaching opening. The writer believes the coach’s communication abilities will allow him to flourish with Peyton Manning. Reversely, if Manning decides to retire, the coach would also be the “perfect man” to groom a young, developing quarterback.

Coach Notes: Broncos, Gase, Tarver, 49ers

While not all teams are overly transparent during the process of searching for a new head coach, the Broncos were willing to announce their first formal interview before it was even finished today, tweeting that offensive coordinator Adam Gase was interviewing for the position. Word of Gase’s afternoon meeting with the Broncos was first reported by Mike Klis of the Denver Post, who adds that the club will talk to Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin on Friday and still hopes to hear back from Ravens offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak.

Here’s the rest of our latest round-up of coaching-related updates:

  • The Broncos will interview Bengals secondary coach Vance Joseph for their head coach opening, according to Mike Klis of The Denver Post. While most head coaching candidates make the step from the coordinator position, it is not unprecedented for position coaches to be hired as head coaches, as Klis notes. Mike Tomlin, John Harbaugh, Andy Reid, and, most recently, Jim Tomsula, all got their first head coaching gigs directly from position coach.
  • There’s still a very good probability that Vic Fangio and Ed Donatell end up with Washington, according to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (on Twitter).
  • Former Raiders defensive coordinator Jason Tarver, whose contract expired this week, is expected to join Jim Tomsula‘s staff, though his role with the 49ers hasn’t been determined and nothing’s official yet, tweets Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com.
  • After losing Bill Callahan to Washington, the Cowboys named Frank Pollack their new offensive line coach, per Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com (Twitter link).
  • Meanwhile, the offensive line coach Callahan replaced in Washington, Chris Foerster, is headed to the 49ers, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter).

Coach Notes: Falcons, Gase, Fangio, Callahan

Former Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles officially landed a new job yesterday, and now can add a Professional Football Writers of America award to his list of achievements for the week. The PFWA named Bowles – the Jets‘ new head coach – the Assistant of the Year for 2014 today, as well as recognizing Cards head coach Bruce Arians as Coach of the Year and Cowboys owner Jerry Jones as Executive of the Year (Twitter link).

Here’s the latest on a few men who might be vying for those PFWA coaching awards in the 2015 season:

  • The Falcons are requesting permission to interview Adam Gase for their offensive coordinator opening, per Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter), and John Middlekauff of 95.7 The Game (Twitter link) expects Gase to ultimately end up in Atlanta. According to Vaughn McClure of ESPN.com, part of Teryl Austin‘s pitch during his head coaching interview with Atlanta involved bringing Gase aboard as an offensive coordinator, but the Broncos OC will be a strong candidate for the Falcons’ position whether the team hires Austin or Dan Quinn as its next head coach.
  • The 49ers have officially released several of their assistants, including defensive coordinator Vic Fangio and defensive backs coach Ed Donatell, from their contracts, tweets Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com. It doesn’t sound like Fangio will have trouble finding work elsewhere — Eric Branch of the San Francisco Chronicle reports (via Twitter) that every team with a defensive coordinator vacancy has expressed interest in the former Niners DC.
  • As for the Niners, expect Colts assistant Rob Chudzinski to be a legit candidate for their offensive coordinator position, says Maiocco (via Twitter).
  • Washington will make a play for former Cowboys offensive coordinator Bill Callahan as an offensive line coach, according to Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com (Twitter links), who reports that an agreement between the two sides could end up happening quickly. Callahan has reportedly received interest from eight suitors though, so Washington will have some competition.
  • The Cardinals have a meeting set for next week to talk to Dick LeBeau about a senior coaching position on their staff, a source tells Adam Schefter of ESPN.com (Twitter link).

NFC West Rumors: Fitzgerald, Rams, Warner

Larry Fitzgerald‘s agent, Eugene Parker, has had positive preliminary contract talks with the Cardinals, sources tell Kent Somers of The Arizona Republic. Fitzgerald, who just completed his eleventh season, is due an $8MM bonus if he’s on the roster on March 17. Fitzgerald has to decide if wants to continue his career in Arizona, and if so, how big a pay cut he would be willing accept. Cards GM Steve Keim has said that he won’t cut the former Pro Bowler, but he hasn’t ruled out the possibility of trading him. A look at the NFC West..

  • Vic Fangio would target Kyle Shanahan as offensive coordinator and Ed Donatell as defensive coordinator if he is promoted to head coach of the 49ers, a source tells Matt Maiocco of CSNBayArea.com. Shanahan would appear to have two horses in the race when it comes to the 49ers’ offensive coordinator gig as father Mike Shanahan has also interviewed for the head coaching position.
  • Rams owner Stan Kroenke isn’t taking calls from St. Louis officials, so they’re now working directly with the NFL to try and keep their team, as Arash Markazi of ESPN.com writes (with help from The Associated Press). “After a while, you sort of get the hint,” said Jeff Rainford, the mayor’s chief of staff. City and state officials firmly believe that the Rams can succeed in St. Louis, but if they won’t stay, the city is prepared to try and lure another team.
  • If the Cardinals had wanted to replace Ryan Lindley with Kurt Warner for their playoff run, he would have been open to it. “There was a scenario where I would have considered it,” Warner said on the Dan Patrick Show, according to Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk. “I don’t know what I would have done.” The 43-year-old Warner said he talked to Arians and GM Steve Keim “in passing” but that he doesn’t think they were ever seriously interested in bringing him back. But the veteran QB was interested enough that he talked to his family about it, and they were supportive.

Coach Updates: Shanahans, Bears, Bills, Jags

Mike Shanahan has already talked to the 49ers, Bills, and Raiders about their head coaching vacancies, and it sounds like he’ll have at least one more interview. According to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (via Twitter), Shanahan will meet with the Bears about their head coaching position after the team hires a general manager, which could happen soon — Patrick Finley of the Chicago Sun-Times says the team has set a Saturday deadline.

As Jason La Canfora of CBSSports.com notes (via Twitter), there are multiple signs pointing to Shanahan as a viable candidate in Chicago. For one, Chiefs executive Chris Ballard is considered a strong contender to be the Bears’ next general manager, and he’d likely be pro-Shanahan. La Canfora adds that Shanahan and quarterback Jay Cutler have remained close, and believe they could thrive together.

According to La Canfora (Twitter links), while it’s possible that Browns offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan ends up working for the same team as his father, the two men are charting their own courses, and aren’t shopping themselves as a package. The younger Shanahan is set to interview for the Bills‘ head coaching opening on Thursday, tweets La Canfora.

Here are a few more non-Shanahan coaching updates from around the NFL:

  • Ian Rapoport of NFL.com confirms (via Twitter) that in addition to Shanahan and Teryl Austin, Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson will interview with the Bills this week.
  • Rapoport also has an update on Washington‘s defensive coordinator interviews, reporting that Chargers linebacker coach Joe Barry arrived in town yesterday to meet with the team, while 49ers defensive backs coach Ed Donatell will speak to the club on Wednesday (Twitter links). Wade Phillips‘ interview for the Washington DC job is scheduled for Thursday, tweets John Keim of ESPN.com.
  • With no concrete updates to provide on the Jaguars‘ hunt for an offensive coordinator, Ryan O’Halloran of the Florida Times-Union suggests that head coach Gus Bradley either hasn’t shifted the search into high gear, or he’s secretly casting a wide net.

New Year’s Roundup: Jets, Coaches, Colston

The Jets are moving very quickly in their search for a new GM, tweets Brian Costello of the New York Post. The team interviewed Browns personnel executive Bill Kuharich in New Jersey this morning and is currently interviewing Seahawks director of pro personnel Trent Kirchner. Citing a league source, Costello also tweets that New York plans to interview Texans director of college scouting Mike Maccagnan and Eagles director of pro personnel Rick Mueller on Sunday or Monday. Costello reiterates (via Twitter) that the Jets would like to hire a GM before making a decision on a new head coach, but they of course must stay active in the head coaching market lest they lose a top candidate to another club. According to another tweet from Costello, one of the most significant questions the Jets are asking GM candidates is what coaches they would like to work with.

As much of the country fixates on the Sugar Bowl, let’s take a look at a few other notes from around the league:

  • John Mullin of CSNChicago.com notes a couple of early patterns in the Bears‘ search for a new head coach and GM, pointing out that the early coaching candidates “have a preponderance of winning in their immediate pasts” and that the team is not concerned whether their new coach has more of an offensive or defensive pedigree.
  • Adam Jahns of the Chicago Sun Times examines the most important early decisions the Bears‘ new GM must make, which include determinations on the respective futures of Jay Cutler and Brandon Marshall and how to handle the looming free agency of Alshon Jeffery and Matt Forte, both of whom are entering the final year of their current contracts.
  • ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweets that Washington, seeking to fill its newly-vacant defensive coordinator position, is setting up interviews with 49ers defensive coordinator Vic Fangio, 49ers DB coach Ed Donatell, and Chargers linebackers coach Joe Barry.
  • Andrew Kulp of CSNPhilly.com looks at some of the Eagles‘ potential cap casualties, including James Casey, Trent Cole, and Cary Williams.
  • With a new mega-deal in his near future, Cowboys star wideout Dez Bryant is focused on Sunday’s playoff game against the Lions, not his next contract, writes Lindsay H. Jones of USA Today. Byrant said, “I’m just going to keep working. I can’t worry about the contract.”
  • Saints wide receiver Marques Colston knows his future in New Orleans is up in the air, and Mike Triplett of ESPN.com writes that, although Colston would like to stay with the only team he has ever known, he may be released or asked to take a pay cut with two years remaining on his current contract. If asked to take a reduction in pay, Colston said his relationship with Drew Brees and Sean Payton would play a role in his decision.
  • Mike Garafolo of Fox Sports 1 tweets that the Buccaneers are expected to request an interview with Titans tight ends coach Mike Mularkey for their vacant offensive coordinator position.