Just when I thought it might be safe to no longer worry about losing our fiery defensive coordinator to a team in need of a head coach, the Titans part ways with Jeff Fischer and Gregg Williams' name is bandied about as a possible replacement. At first, I shrugged this off as mere media speculation and paid little attention to it. But now, it's being reported that he will interview for the position tomorrow. Now my alert level has abruptly risen to DEFCON 3.
This is not welcomed news. Many have speculated that the Titans want to promote from within house. They've already interviewed offensive line coach Mike Munchak and offensive coordinator Mike Heimerdinger with many believing Munchak is the front runner for the job. In addition to interviewing Williams, the Titans have also received permission to interview Falcon's offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey and Giants' defensive coordinator Perry Fewell, so us losing Williams this offseason is far from a certainty.
It still looks like less than a 50/50 chance that Williams will get offered the job. Even if he is offered the job, would he accept it? Gregg would most likely want to take his son with him and the Titans haven't been receptive to family affairs on their coaching staff in the past. This is from the Times-Pic crew:
Finally, Williams likely would want to bring his son, Blake, with him as a coaching assistant. But the Titans have not been accomodating to such requests in the recent past. Reportedly, when Williams was being considered as a defensive coordinator candidate with the Titans in 2009, he was told that he would not be able to bring his son with him, which is one of the reasons he chose to join the Saints. And reportedly, the Fisher fallout was triggered in part by the team's refusal to allow him to promote his son Brandon from a volunteer assistant to a full-time coaching assistant.
This may figure in substantially if GW is offered the position. My gut instinct (known to be wrong on occasion) tells me the Titans will promote from within and all of this interviewing outside their organization is just them being as thorough as possible.
But what happens if Williams decides to leave us this year? It's kinda late in the game to go searching for a new defensive coordinator and our previously best in-house candidate, Dennis Allen, just left to join the Broncos. It would also mean our players would have to learn a new system at a time when they just seemed to fully grasp Williams' system this past year. I had high hopes that they would really be a defensive force to reckon with in their third year with GW's aggressive playbook.
What do you think? Should my DEFCON level be at 1 or maybe even -1? Please tell me we won't have to go looking for another DC in the next few weeks. I still have nightmares from the Gary Gibbs years.
After I just spent the better part of an hour writing this, it's just been reported that Williams has withdrawn his name from consideration. Oh well. I'm happy at least that it appears he'll stay with us for at least one more season.