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Falcons coaching search down to 4 candidtes


Jerry Maguire
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Falcons' search for coach down to 4 candidates

By D. ORLANDO LEDBETTER

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Published on: 01/23/08

Mobile Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff said the process of selecting a head coach his first major move with the franchise is winding down.

"I've talked to a number of very highly respected general managers in the league who have advised me to take one step at a time," Dimitroff told the Journal-Constitution on Tuesday from the Senior Bowl. "Really focus on the task at hand and truly get the right coach for us before I move on to thinking about free agency and the draft."

Steve Spagnuolo of the Giants can't be interviewed by the Falcons until after the Super Bowl.

Dimitroff said the Falcons' list is down to four candidates. They have interviewed former Baltimore defensive coordinator Rex Ryan, Jacksonville defensive coordinator Mike Smith and Minnesota defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier. New York Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo also is a candidate.

The team previously requested permission to interview Spagnuolo during the Giants' playoff run but was denied. The Falcons, per NFL rules, will have to wait until after the Feb. 3 Super Bowl between the Giants and New England to interview Spagnuolo.

"Those are the prospects that we've been dealing with," Dimitroff said. "All viable candidates, all very impressive with their football minds. It's honestly not an easy process because I believe that they all have what we are looking for."

It's possible the Falcons may not wait for Spagnuolo.

"That again presents a little bit of an obstacle for us," Dimitroff said. "Because as you know, he's not been in our building yet. He has not interviewed throughout the whole process."

Dimitroff and Spagnuolo have known each other since the 1990s, when both were in the World League.

"I know him, but [Falcons owner] Mr. [Arthur] Blank does not," Dimitroff said.

Mike Singletary, who's at the Senior Bowl coaching the South team with the rest of San Francisco staff, will not be interviewed.

"I think the organization is very comfortable with where we are," Dimitroff said. "They were very impressed with Mike as well, but my feeling right now is that we are not going forward with an interview on Mike."

Singletary interviewed for the same position last year and reportedly impressed Blank.

"I've got no response to [that]," Singletary said. "If they are done, then they are done."

The final four candidates all coach defense.

"Each one of those coaches has a potential candidate at offensive coordinator that we think is a very strong candidate," Dimitroff said. "It's more about getting the right head coach and the right staff."

Ryan, who was here scouting at the Senior Bowl, and Smith have been interviewed twice.

"I'm in a holding pattern; otherwise I haven't been informed," Ryan said. "It's getting close, I feel. It's taking awhile, but that's OK. Hopefully, it works out for me."

Ryan is also a candidate to return as Baltimore's defensive coordinator under new coach John Harbaugh.

Ryan clearly covets the Falcons position.

"There are tons of positive things about the job," Ryan said. "They have a lot of good people in the organization. They have a lot of talent. It's going to be a great situation for whoever gets it. Hopefully, I'm that guy."

Ryan doesn't mind waiting out the Falcons' protracted search.

"I think they're being thorough; it's as thorough of a search that I've been around," Ryan said. "I'm confident they'll get the best guy."

Dimitroff didn't want to present a timetable for the naming of the new coach.

"As far as the timetable on the whole thing, what I really want to stress is that we do want to be patient," Dimitroff said. "I think we've shown a good deal of patience through this whole process so far. That's important for everyone in the organization."

Other than possibly waiting for Spagnuolo, most of the work appears to be done.

"There will not be a surprise candidate," Dimitroff said.

http://www.ajc.com/sports/content/sports/f...lcons_0123.html

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This is the best article and the best information I have seen on the coaching search yet. Good to see Ryan understands the process. At this point I am betting on the fact the Ryan will be named the head coach, but you never know. At least this should calm the nerves of all of the Falcons fans on here.

On a side note, it is good to see the AJC is capable of writing an optimistic article concerning the Falcons.

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REV.2000 (1/22/2008)
Lee Long (1/22/2008)
It is nice to know there wont be any suprises in this hire. Now it is a wait and see if they wait for Spags, wait and get turned down, or go ahead and pick one of the other three.

RED HELMETS AND BLACK SHIRTS ........ Thats the ticket!

just take the black jerseys from UGA, because those were FIRE. if the falcons came out like that it would be awesome.

nd im picky, because those 2 are young and experienced. i like rex more and more, because he actually wants to be the HC for the falcons, but Spag is good also, because he changed the giants around.

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I like all these guys, but I hope we get the guy from the Giants. I just hope the don't go off the deep end and hire some guy who just makes a good impression. We need a head coach. A real head coach. I hope that when they do hire someone, that I don't raise my eyebrows and say to myself "they hired who, oh that guy?" I live down here in Sarasota Fl. and its tough being a Falcons fan down here in Buccaneer, err Yuckaneer land. So we need to come strong and be ready next year, not in two or three years.

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The Cush (1/22/2008)
Falcons' search for coach down to 4 candidates

By D. ORLANDO LEDBETTER

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Published on: 01/23/08

"I think the organization is very comfortable with where we are," Dimitroff said. "They were very impressed with Mike as well, but my feeling right now is that we are not going forward with an interview on Mike."

Singletary interviewed for the same position last year and reportedly impressed Blank.

"I've got no response to [that]," Singletary said. "If they are done, then they are done."

Stick a fork in me. I'm done.:(

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Superfan "! (1/22/2008)
GEORGIAfan (1/22/2008)
Supes i feel your pain. mike singletary actually wanted to be here, but i think rex ryan is the next best thing, because he actually wants to be here also, and he is a pretty good DC.

Thanks man,...I'll live. I'll support whoever is hired,........as always.

Look at it this way, if Rex Ryan becomes HC...If he don't get his brother, He may get Singletary for DC.

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Superfan "! (1/22/2008)
GEORGIAfan (1/22/2008)
Supes i feel your pain. mike singletary actually wanted to be here, but i think rex ryan is the next best thing, because he actually wants to be here also, and he is a pretty good DC.

Thanks man,...I'll live. I'll support whoever is hired,........as always.

thats all we can do as fans.

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The Cush (1/22/2008)
Spags strikes me as a very loyal guy, and definitely not a quitter. I think he would be here for the long haul, and I think there will be improvement in year 1.

If Spags was smart enough, he would wait until the giants hc job is open. I really don't see him leaving the giants.

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