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Jets Journal

Jane McManus of The Journal News on the Jets.

Cowher backs out

December
31

This just in, Bill Cowher is no longer in the running to be the Jets head coach.

The Jets released this…

“After reaching out to coach Cowher’s representatives, we were informed tonight that he is not a candidate for the position,” said team spokesperson Bruce Speight.

Many Jets fans had been hoping for Cowher, 51, a proven winner in 15 seasons with the Steelers. He has another year left on a contract with CBS, where he serves as a football analyst, but could consider an early return to coaching for the right position. There was a report early yesterday that wherever he went, Cowher wanted to bring in his own personnel director.

That could have been a dealbreaker, since Johnson had said on Monday that he didn’t consider firing Tannenbaum along with coach Eric Mangini after the 1-4 season-ending slide. Tannenbaum brought in roughly $154 million in free agents during the last offseason, and the class yielded three Pro Bowl players in NT Kris Jenkins, LG Alan Faneca and QB Brett Favre.

“We’re under the impression that he does does not need total control over personnel,” a the source said when a meeting was still on the table.

Johnson said that he does not believe one person can serve as a coach and GM, and the source reiterated the owner’s intent to have two people in those roles.

“Any head coach would have to fit in that structure,” the source said.

Cowher could address the situation on Sunday during the CBS wild card pregame show.

Two candidates on the current coaching staff who will also interview for the Jets head spot are offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer and assistant offensive coach Bill Callahan, the former Nebraska coach who worked primarily with the offensive line. Marty Schottenheimer, Miami’s Bill Parcells and Patriots coordinator Josh McDaniels are not yet on the short list.

Mike Shanahan was fired by Denver yesterday as well, and could affect the coaching carousel by becoming a candidate for an open spot, or allowing the Broncos to snare one of the coveted coaching prospects.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, December 31st, 2008 at 12:22 am by Jane McManus. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
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A team of Journal News reporters share their thoughts on the Jets with the Lower Hudson fans.

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About the author
Jane McManusJane McManus joined The Journal News in 1999, after working at The Daily News and Newsday. Since she's been here, she's covered everything from girls basketball to the Final Four, the U.S. Open of both golf and tennis and recreational sports from rock climbing to roller derby (which she liked so much she joined the team). READ MORE
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