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AJC reports we made Smith an offer.


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From ajc.com:

Falcons tab Jags' Smith to be head coach

Atlanta, defensive coordinator in contract negotiations

By STEVE WYCHE, D. ORLANDO LEDBETTER

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Published on: 01/23/08

Mike Smith has been offered the Falcons' head coach job and the team is currently in contract negotiations with the Jacksonville defensive coordinator, according to team officials familiar with the process.

Speaking to the AJC at the Senior Bowl in Mobile on Tuesday, new general manager Thomas Dimitroff said the field of candidates for the vacant position was down to four Smith, Baltimore defensive coordinator Rex Ryan, Minnesota defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier and New York Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo.

Mike Smith

Dimitroff was still in Mobile Wednesday morning and it was not known the exact timetable for an official announcement on the hiring of Smith.

News of the Falcons' decision drew positive reaction Wednesday morning at the Senior Bowl.

"Yeah, I just got off the phone with him," Jacksonville head coach Jack Del Rio said. "Mike is a very detailed guy. He's got a lot of passion for the game. I've been together with Mike for the last five years in Jacksonville."

Del Rio believes that Smith is ready to take on his first NFL head coaching job.

"Nobody works harder," Del Rio said. "He's got a great mind for football. He's prepared for this opportunity and I think he'll do a nice job with it."

Del Rio was not sure what assistants that Smith might want to bring with him to Atlanta from the Jacksonville staff.

"We'll work through that," Del Rio said.

Del Rio guided the Jaguars to the AFC divisional round of the playoffs this season.

"We worked hard to put together a strong staff," Del Rio said. "We'll just continue to do all that we can to win. Obviously I wish Mike the very best with this opportunity that he's getting."

Joe DeCamillis, a former Falcons assistant and Jacksonville's special teams coordinator, said he would not join Smith's staff in Atlanta. Mike Tice, Jacksonville's assistant head coach/tight ends and former head coach with Minnesota, also does not plan to come to Atlanta.

When asked if he would be joining the staff in Atlanta, Tice said, "We've got a pretty good thing in Jacksonville."

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