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Ravens, Ryan still waiting


67camaro
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Ravens, Ryan still waiting

By Aaron Wilson, Times Staff Writer Tuesday, January 22, 2008

OWINGS MILLS The waiting continues for defensive coordinator Rex Ryan and, to a lesser extent, the Baltimore Ravens.

While Ryan remains in contention for the Atlanta Falcons head-coaching vacancy, he s simultaneously a candidate to run the Ravens defense for new Baltimore coach John Harbaugh.

The limbo effect for Ryan is being impacted by the unavailability of highly-regarded New York Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spa-gnuolo, who s now considered the frontrunner in Atlanta in NFL circles.

Under league rules, though, the Falcons aren t allowed to interview Spagnuolo until after Super Bowl XLII. Because league guidelines stipulate that only assistants that have already been interviewed once prior to the conference championship games can be interviewed, Spagnuolo is off-limits to Falcons owner Arthur Blank for the next two weeks.

The Falcons weren t granted permission by the Giants to talk to Spagnuolo prior to the team s wild-card victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Ryan, 45, has interviewed twice for the Falcons job, but is no longer consider a lock to ultimately land the position.

The Falcons brought Ryan and his wife in last week to meet with high-ranking team officials, and Baltimore team officials were surprised that Ryan wasn t immediately offered the job after Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Jason Garrett rejected their offer.

Atlanta has since interviewed Minnesota Vikings defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier.

Jacksonville Jaguars defensive coordinator Mike Smith, a former Baltimore assistant, had a second interview.

Ravens team owner Steve Bisciotti called Blank on Saturday prior to Harbaugh s introductory press conference and recommended that he hire Ryan, who has directed the Baltimore defense to rankings of fifth, first and sixth over the past three years.

For Ryan to remain in Baltimore, he ll likely require a significant raise over the $1 million to $1.2 million that he s due in the final year of his contract.

It s considered highly unlikely that Ryan, who s also in demand as a potential defensive coordinator with other NFL teams, would remove his name from consideration in Atlanta unless it s communicated to him that he s definitely not getting the job. Because Ryan remains under contract, the Ravens can block him from being a defensive coordinator elsewhere under league rules.

Meanwhile, the Ravens have targeted Philadelphia Eagles quarterbacks coach Pat Shumur as an offensive coordinator candidate. Although Eagles coach Andy Reid has blocked assistant coaches in the past from taking jobs elsewhere, there are now indications that he s willing to give Shumur the freedom to go to Baltimore.

An Eagles team spokesman said Monday that he wasn t aware of the Ravens asking permission to speak to Shurmur yet.

Former Miami Dolphins coach Cam Cameron is another strong option for that position.

If it doesn t work out with Ryan, Harbaugh could turn toward San Diego Chargers linebackers coach Ron Rivera, who previously worked with Harbaugh in Philadelphia.

Reach staff writer Aaron Wilson at 410-857-7896 or sports@carrollcountytimes.

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It has become obvious that the Falcons FO is leaving no stone unturned in this search. I think Blank is doing a great job in not rushing to pick the wrong guy and making his decision drag out. I am going to see how this turns out. Rex is still considered a HC candidate for us until we decide on if Spags will or won't take the job.

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Twinblade (1/22/2008)
If I was Rex, I wouldn't take the job cause then that would make me feel that I was the last hope for Hc in atlanta and would get fired after one season so Blank can go after Cowher again.

He is a young guy looking for his first HC gig.

Guys like that don't care how they get the job.

They just want the shot to show everyone that they deserve the job.

Ryan ain't got a sugar daddy like Garrett.

He will take the job.

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Twinblade (1/22/2008)
If I was Rex, I wouldn't take the job cause then that would make me feel that I was the last hope for Hc in atlanta and would get fired after one season so Blank can go after Cowher again.

I think it would be foolish to turn down a head coaching job. Many Many coaches are not the 1st on the list that take the job. There is only 32 of these jobs, and if YOU want to be a head coach, and believe in what YOU can do it does not matter who was on the list, or who turned it down all that matters is YOU GOT THE JOB!!

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67camaro (1/22/2008)
Twinblade (1/22/2008)
If I was Rex, I wouldn't take the job cause then that would make me feel that I was the last hope for Hc in atlanta and would get fired after one season so Blank can go after Cowher again.

I think it would be foolish to turn down a head coaching job. Many Many coaches are not the 1st on the list that take the job. There is only 32 of these jobs, and if YOU want to be a head coach, and believe in what YOU can do it does not matter who was on the list, or who turned it down all that matters is YOU GOT THE JOB!!

In addition, just because you are a leading candidate in a HC search doesn't mean that you are the best fit. Teams are looking for the HC that suits their needs, not for the best guys available.

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