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Garrett visits; Rams coaching search gets confusing

[Note by VanRam, 01/17/09 10:02 AM EST ] Sentiment among Rams fans seems to be against Garrett - I'm half expecting to see pitchforks and torches. In fact, in all of the unscientific polls here and elsewhere around the interweb, Spagnuolo seems to be the top choice of Rams fans. So let's hear it, why Spags? Why not Garrett? Weigh in. If you're new here, hit the join button over on the left; Rams fans need to make their voices heard on this.

What to make of the reports that Jason Garrett could be the guy? He came to St. Louis yesterday for what he called "a second interview," but the official word from GM Billy Devaney says it was purely information and refused to call Garrett the leading candidate.

Yesterday, it was reported that Frazier and Spagnuolo were the top two candidates. So what happened, or what's going here? Some options.

  1. The Rams really like Garrett and wanted to give him the chance to see the facilities while he considered the offer. That's the most obvious inference here. Word is that Devaney has made his recommendation to Rams owner Chip Rosenbloom et al, so this could be step two in convincing him to take it.
  2. Contract issues with Spagnuolo and/or Frazier. What about that earlier report that Spagnuolo wanted control over personnel? Are the Rams at a sticking point over that issue or another one? If that's the case, is this a leverage tactic?
  3. Other jobs The Chiefs haven't made a decision on their head coach, but speculation is that they'll likely fire Herm Edwards. Are Rams candidates holding out for that job? There's also the Raiders, but for Spagnuolo and Frazier, being a coordinator for a functional team - and able to get a head coaching job next season - trumps head coaching for Al Davis, right?
  4. Garrett's leveraging the Cowboys, not for money, but to send T.O. packing, a rumored possibility. Also, remember it wasn't all that long ago that Garrett was considered Wade Phillips replacement, as the 'Boys struggled this season. Things got real dysfunctional in Dallas this season, a rodeo of chaos, with players calling out each other and the coaches. And Jerry Jones is, well, nuts.
Last season fans wouldn't have batted an eye at bringing in Garrett to coach the Rams. However, after watching the situation between Linehan and the players deteriorate beyond repair, and more losing football, it's hard not be leery of Garrett as the Rams head coach after watching him spar with players - not just T.O. but Romo too - in Dallas. Of course, like I said, that team's a disaster with guys like T.O. and Pacman Jones, etc., so it's hard to lay blame on a single coordinator in the midst of a circus. Isn't some of that on Wade Phillips' shoulders anyway? Be sure to read Bernie Miklasz' pros and cons on Garrett.

I'll admit that I prefer the Rams hiring Spagnuolo or Frazier, but, like I said, a year ago at this time the thought of Garrett as the Rams head coach would have been exciting. The more we know, the less we do. News changes fast this time of year, especially with technology making leaks and speculation in high places so fluid and viral. Hiring someone, especially a head coach for a team in desperate need of turning itself around, is never an easy decision and opinions change as minds mull facts and figures.

One thing we do know: it's not money. Garrett's one of the better paid coordinators in the league and likely to cost just as much as Spagnuolo. It seems Frazier might be the least expensive, in terms of salary. Unless Garrett's just so desperate to get out of there...or if one of the other guys isn't getting a budge on his demands...or whatever. who the hell knows.

Stay tuned.