Door could be open for Caldwell to coach Lions

Door could be open for Caldwell to coach Lions
January 13, 2014, 8:15 pm
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What should the Ravens address?

With Ken Whisenhunt named head coach of the Titans on Monday, Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell remains a strong candidate to be the Lions next head coach. Caldwell could be the favorite, due to his experience working with quarterbacks, and the Lions’ desire to find a coach that can accelerate Matthew Stafford’s development. However, former Titans coach Mike Munchak is also believed to be a strong candidate.

The next 24 hours will be crucial for Caldwell’s chances in Detroit. During a Monday evening telephone interview, Fritz Pollard Alliance chairman Fritz Pollard said the Lions planned to bring back two candidates for a second interview. Former Texans coach Gary Kubiak, Munchak, and Caldwell have all interviewed with the Lions. In the near future, Caldwell could get the job, or at least find out if he is a finalist.

“We’re waiting for Detroit to tell us yeah, or nay,” said Pollard, whose organization promotes minority hiring in football. “Their statement to us was that they were going to bring back the top two guys. They weren’t supposed to do that until today or tomorrow.”

Whisenhunt also interviewed with the Lions, and many believed he was their top choice. But with Whisenhunt now in Tennessee, Caldwell may be Detroit’s most attractive choice due to his experience with two Super Bowl-winning quarterbacks – Peyton Manning and Joe Flacco. Caldwell and Manning spent 10 years together with the Colts, including the last three with Caldwell as their head coach (2009-11). Although the Ravens' offense struggled this season, Caldwell was the offensive coordinator during the team's Super Bowl run to end the 2012 season, and he is well-respected in coaching circles

In Caldwell’s first season as the Colts’ head coach, they went 14-2 and reached the Super Bowl before losing to the Saints. If Caldwell gets the Detroit job, the Ravens will obviously need a new offensive coordinator. Caldwell may also want to take some coaches on the Ravens’ staff with him.