As New York Giants head coach Tom Coughlin prepares to enter Thursday meetings to begin offseason evaluations and to discuss his current coaching staff with team owners and General Manager Jerry Reese, the Washington Redskins, fresh off firing Mike Shanahan on Black Monday, have requested permission to interview defensive coordinator Perry Fewell for their vacant head coaching position, reports ESPN Bureau's Josina Anderson.
Both Giants coordinators, Kevin Gilbride and the aforementioned Perry Fewell, have been the subject of much debate and speculation in recent seasons. A year ago, Fewell led the Giants' defense to a 31st ranking, leading many to believe he was on the hot seat. Instead, the Giants opted to give Fewell a quiet one-year extension, and after a rough start to this season, he was able to rally the Giants defense to an 8th overall finish.
Despite the solid defensive turnaround, the Giants still finished the season at 7-9 — a record that was not nearly good enough for co-owner John Mara. As a result of what's been deemed a failed season, Mara made it abundantly clear earlier this week that the coordinators will be a part of the offseason evaluations. And while Gilbride appears the most likely to get the axe, there's no guarantee that Fewell would be safe himself.
"As a football coach, we know that’s part of the business. It’s just like free agency, it’s part of the business for the players. You just go work and coach every day and you do the best job you can every day. Whatever happens will happen. Every day is a blessed day when you’re able to coach football," Fewell said last week.
Still, Coughlin fully intends to go into Thursday's meetings prepared to fight for both of his coordinators.
"I have great confidence in this group of men that we've had here as a coaching staff," Coughlin said. "I believe in them very strongly."
Whether or not the Giants ultimately grant the Redskins permission to interview Fewell remains to be seen, so they will continue to move forward with their list of current candidates, including Baltimore Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell, Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott and Seattle Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell.
Fewell last interviewed for a head coaching position following the 2011 season when he met with the Carolina Panthers, Cleveland Browns, Denver Broncos and Tennessee Titans.
Update: The Giants have granted the Redskins permission to interview Fewell for their vacant head coaching position.
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