Is Bill Parcells getting the itch to coach again?

According to the Newark Star-Ledger, Bill Parcells might be interested in returning to the sidelines as a head coach in the near future.

One other tidbit I gathered this morning is that a certain former coach of the Giants, Patriots, Jets and Cowboys has the itch to coach again. That’s right, a source has told me Bill Parcells is telling those close to him he would consider a return to the sidelines. I’m guessing it would have to be the right opportunity for a premier franchise (Jets again????). Parcells has an out in his Dolphins contract if Wayne Huizenga sells the team, which apparently is going to happen. So far, reports have Parcells potentially jumping ship to be the GM of another franchise. But I’m hearing he would also like to coach the talent he selects.

This shouldn’t surprise anyone – especially with a couple of franchises ready for a complete overhaul. Parcells loves to take coal and polish it into a diamond, which he did in just one season this year in Miami. With the Browns, Lions and Jets in need of a head coach, its no wonder Parcells may want to coach again. (Although I wouldn’t get too excited if I were a Lion fan, because William Clay Ford Sr. already gave the GM job to Martin Mayhew on Monday and the “Big Tuna” probably wouldn’t return unless he had complete control.)

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William Clay Ford Sr. doesn’t get it

Detroit Lions’ owner William Clay Ford Sr. fired head coach Rod Marinelli on Monday and then promoted Martin Mayhew to general manager and Tom Lewand to team president.

Rod MarinelliLewand was chief operating officer. Mayhew has served as general manager since Matt Millen was fired as president three games into the season. He was assistant general manager before Millen’s firing.

Defensive coordinator Joe Barry, assistant offensive line coach Mike Barry and secondary coach Jimmy Lake also were fired, and defensive line coach Joe Cullen’s contract will not be renewed.

Offensive coordinator Jim Colletto was reassigned to offensive line coach.

Assistant director of pro personnel Dave Boller will not be retained.

The Lions went 10-38 under Marinelli. They started 6-2 last season and seemed on the verge of turning things around, but went 1-23 since.

The finale came Sunday, when the Lions lost at Green Bay, 31-21.

“Overall, the record speaks for itself,” Marinelli said after the game. “We know what that is. My feelings about it will be kept to myself, but the record speaks for itself.

You have to hand it to Marinelli – he always handled himself well. There’s no question he had to be fired, but he’ll find a job as a defensive coach (maybe not as a coordinator) soon.

I don’t know much about Mayhew; maybe he is the right guy for the general manager job. But when you hire a guy that had a hand in building a perennial loser over the years, what message are you trying to send to your fan base? Why not go out and get someone from a winning organization to try and get you back to respectability? Why not hire someone who understands how to build a winner? Not a guy that was already on board when the team was losing.

This was a bad decision by Ford Sr. and one that probably has set the Lions back even further. (If that’s even possible after finishing 0-16.)

Jets fire head coach Eric Mangini

The New York Jets officially canned Eric Mangini after the team failed to make the playoffs.

Eric ManginiThe clincher was the Jets’ 24-17 loss to Miami on Sunday that gave the Dolphins the AFC East title.

“We don’t take this decision lightly,” Jets owner Woody Johnson said at a Monday morning news conference. “We respect Eric for what he’s done but we want to build on the successful foundation he has laid.”

Mangini, 37, was 23-26 in three seasons with the Jets, including 0-1 in the playoffs.

“For the current New York Jets organization, we’ve made the decision to move on,” Johnson said. “It’s a judgment call.”

The Jets acquired Brett Favre before the season started and ran off to an 8-3 start. But losses to Denver, at San Francisco, at Seattle and to Miami over the final four weeks left New York outside of the playoffs for the second straight season.

Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum said Monday the organization wants the 39-year-old Favre to return for 2009 and fulfill the final year of his contract.

There was an interesting tidbit on the bottom line of ESPN News Sunday night that said Favre didn’t have fun playing for the Jets this year because he was often scolded in front of the team by Mangini for making poor decisions and bad throws. Don’t know if Mangini’s release will mean Favre will stay, but it probably couldn’t hurt.

It’s amazing how just three years ago Mangini was highly regarded and was considered one of the bright young minds in football. Now he’s out of a job. I’m sure many Jet fans won’t miss his emotionless, expressionless body language on the sidelines.

Bad timing in Nolan firing?

Ray Ratto of the San Francisco Chronicle writes that firing head coach Mike Nolan was the right move by the 49ers, but the timing was awful.

Mike NolanThis is the theme that runs through the 49ers’ administration – it has a spectacularly lousy sense of timing.

Look, Nolan has been a toe in search of a tag since the end of last season. His flaws have been examined in minute detail, and his gifts do not measure favorably by comparison. This day was coming. It simply makes no sense to having it come Monday, unless you recognize that the 49ers don’t do anything through planning. It’s knee meets jerk, time and again.

Nolan got fired for a lot of reasons. He got fired when he did because the failings of the franchises were leading back to John York, and York hired Nolan and gave him all the decision-making power and the pulpit to be the face of the franchise so that he would provide a cushion between York and the public.

So York decided, reflexively and with no discernible strategy save getting out of the line of fire, that Nolan had finished serving the purpose for which he had been hired. York couldn’t wait one more week, when a firing would have made sense. He had to do it now, because … well, just because.

Ratto’s probably right, but once the cat was out of the bag, it’s kind of hard to get the thing back in. Sometimes it’s better to just cut your losses (at whatever time you do it) and move on. Singletary is not in a great place now, but he’s always been a motivator and who knows, maybe the 49ers can come together in the wake of this move and compete. They certainly have enough talent; they just need direction.

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