Update: So much for that. The Tennessee Titans reportedly agreed with Ken Whisenhunt Monday night according to ESPN's Chris Mortensen, meaning the Lions will have to look elsewhere for their next head coach.
The Detroit Lions weren't able to get Ken Whisenhunt in town early Monday thanks to San Diego Chargers' exit interviews, but Tuesday could be the next big day, as the organization hopes to interview Whisenhunt a second time. This meeting would come on Detroit's turf, and could perhaps help lay the groundwork toward securing him as the team's next head coach.
Chris McCosky of the Detroit News reported Monday afternoon that Whisenhunt was initially supposed to fly to Detroit via private jet on Monday, but that flight was delayed. As McCosky said, though the Lions were unwilling to confirm that Whisenhunt was scheduled to be in town, San Diego Chargers' head coach Mike McCoy seemed resigned to the fate of losing his offensive coordinator during his season-ending press conference on Monday.
As McCosky also wrote, a five year contract to coach the Lions is presumably expected to be offered to Whisenhunt Tuesday when the sides are expected to next meet. No further specifics were provided by the Lions to McCosky on the details of a possible meeting, or if and when a meeting will actually occur.
Though the Lions still look intent on wooing their top target, the former head coach of the Arizona Cardinals, reports much of Monday indicated that Whisenhunt himself had not yet decided where he wished to coach, with Detroit and Tennessee being the two top contenders and a decision expected within the next 24-48 hours. As Ian Rapoport tweeted, Whisenhunt also feels comfortable in Tennessee given he coached at Vanderbilt. McCosky downplayed the Titans' rumors on Twitter early Monday as possibly agent-driven, seeking to be used as negotiation leverage between the two sides.
NFL.com's Michael Silver reported that Whisenhunt does seem intent on deciding soon, considering he has been reaching out to assistants on San Diego's staff, perhaps putting out feelers regarding job offers when Whisenhunt gets his next gig. The name to watch there is Frank Reich, current quarterbacks coach of the Chargers and former Lions' signal caller. San Diego might also like to promote Reich to offensive coordinator. Regardless, Silver said that the Lions are the team to watch in Whisenhunt's pursuit, either today or tomorrow.
Certainly, all signs are pointing towards the Lions getting a deal done with Whisenhunt, possibly as quick as tomorrow. The possibility of the Titans pulling off the upset certainly seems remote with news of a potential visit, but if no Lions' deal is struck with Whisenhunt by Tuesday evening, it might be time to wonder.
- Detroit Lions Interview Mike Munchak, Expect to Talk with Ken Whisenhunt Thursday
- Report: Detroit Lions Have “Strong” Interest in San Diego Chargers’ Ken Whisenhunt
- Report: Detroit Lions Will Interview Former Tennessee Titans Head Coach Mike Munchak Friday
- Where the Detroit Lions’ Coaching Search Stands, Week Two Edition: Ken Whisenhunt Now Availible
- Report: Former Head Coaches Jim Caldwell, Lovie Smith to Interview with Detroit Lions
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