With Jeff Fisher being dismissed following the Los Angeles Rams’ 42-14 defeat at the hands of the Atlanta Falcons, the attention now turns to finding their next head coach. The Rams’ first year in Southern California has been nothing short of disastrous on and off the field. It is imperative that general manager Les Snead and company make a splash this coming offseason. Here are some potential candidates for the next head coach of the Rams.
According to Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times, the Monday Night Football analyst for ESPN would “listen to a Rams pitch.” Gruden developed his coaching reputation by reviving the moribund Oakland Raiders in the late 1990’s and early 2000’s by turning that franchise into a Super Bowl contender.
After being “traded” away to Tampa Bay after the 2001 season, Gruden’s intense coaching style helped propel the Buccaneers to the blowout victory over the Raiders the very next season in Super Bowl XXXVII. Gruden could be the type of coach sorely needed to turn the Rams’ fortunes around, where they have failed to have a winning season in over a decade.
Like Gruden, Jim Harbaugh is the type of coach that has the reputation of turning football teams around quickly. While at Stanford, Harbaugh turned a perennial laughing stock in college football into one of the best teams in the PAC-12 by the end of his third season.
In his four years coaching the San Francisco 49ers, Harbaugh led them to the NFC Championship in his first three seasons, including an appearance in Super Bowl XLVIII. Harbaugh’s talents were so great he even made QB Colin Kaepernick look like an elite NFL quarterback.
As coach of the Michigan Wolverines, Harbaugh has once again resuscitated a floundering program into a powerhouse within two years.
Before we get excited Rams fans, Harbaugh has stated that he is not interested and that the rumors are “lies made up by our enemies, who are jive turkeys.” Still, Rams COO Kevin Demoff will undoubtedly place a phone call to the Michigan coach.
Other potential candidates
Pete Carroll –Although very unlikely, the current coach of the Seattle Seahawks’s name has been mentioned. His familiarity with the L.A. area, more particularly his success at USC made him a logical candidate. He quickly shot down those rumors before the Seahawks’ 24-3 victory over the Rams Thursday night.
Kyle Shanahan, Atlanta Falcons Offensive Coordinator.
As an offensive coordinator, Shanahan has propelled the Falcons to one the best offenses in the NFL. His Offensive philosophy could help bring better fortunes to Jared Good, Todd Gurley and company come 2017.
Josh McDaniels, New England Patriots Offensive Coordinator.
McDaniels had a disastrous spell as head coach of the Denver Broncos in 2009 and 2010, but the Rams may give McDaniels another opportunity due to the Patriots’ offense, which has been one of the best since his return to New England.
Regardless what the Rams do, they must make a splash and hire the right coach. They need a decent offensive line to give players like Goff and Gurley even a chance to succeed. Fan enthusiasm in the Los Angeles has waned in this disastrous first season back, and with PSL’s for the brand new Inglewood set to be made available soon, it’s urgent that the Rams make a splash this offseason to avoid the same 7-9 (or worse) garbage that has plagued this team.
Sources: Sam Farmer, LA Times, David Lombardi, ESPN.com, Will Burchfield, CBS Detroit, Liz Mathews, USA Today
Martin Cruz is a staff writer for Rams Talk. You can find him on Twitter with the username @MCruz1988