No Rex in our city? For the Falcons, that could be a problem

“Our reorganized front office will redouble its efforts to find a quality head coach.” (Curtis Compton/AJC)

"Our reorganized front office will redouble its efforts to find a quality head coach." (Curtis Compton/AJC)

“Our reorganized front office will find a coach worth his weight in PSLs.” (Curtis Compton/AJC)

Dallas — Let me stipulate that I was never sure why the Atlanta Falcons were presumed to be so high on Rex Ryan. (Let me also stipulate that they mightn’t have been as high on him as advertised.) As noted, the Falcons just fired a coach for having consecutive losing seasons; Ryan was himself fired by the New York Jets after four non-winning seasons.

But the reason I thought the Bird Brain Trust might settle on R. Ryan was because he’s the only guy on the list of presumed candidates who’d be guaranteed to Win The Press Conference, and at a time when you’re asking fans to pony up five figures just for the right to buy tickets in Arthur Blank’s new stadium, you could stand a bit of sizzle.

Moot point now, apparently. Adam Schefter of ESPN is reporting that the Buffalo Bills, who have neither a new stadium nor a good quarterback, are finalizing a contract with Ryan, whom the Falcons had interviewed once (for five hours!) and had reportedly planned to meet again. I won’t go so far as to say this means the Falcons won’t wind up with a splendid coach — maybe the just-bumped-up Scott Pioli will persuade Bill Belichick to leave New England so he can work for Blank, though honesty compels me to assess the odds of that as less than infinitesimal — but from a PR standpoint, this can’t be construed as the greatest of starts.

We can’t, however, judge a search until it’s complete. Flash back almost 30 years, to the Falcons’ intrepid search for Dan Henning’s replacement. They approached Dick Vermeil. They became the first team (though not nearly the last) to be strung along by Bill Parcells. They nearly had a deal with Terry Donahue, then of UCLA, but it fell through after a West Coast meeting with the Smiths. Then they hired … Marion Campbell! For the second time!

Er … so maybe that’s not the greatest example of patience rewarded. I’ll shut up now.

Reader Comments 0

81 comments
Infinite Hope
Infinite Hope

Just look at the Hawks.  Who thought Coach Bud was gonna make such an impact with no head-coaching experience?  If you haven't noticed, the Hawks are the best in the East and they have beaten all of the west teams they have played.  Smitty had no HC experience and he did well here (before he shamefully got the shaft from management).  Retreads like Ryan are not the answer.  Fresh eyes and a new approach can make a difference.  Bowles has paid his due, he started his career here, and I, for one, would welcome him to the fold.

Stock Market Guru
Stock Market Guru

@Hopeless in ATL ...if you think Bowles is a better candidate than Ryan, you're crazy.  In 3 years, you'll be hoping Nick Saban replaces Bowles.

DanJohn
DanJohn

Somehow I don't think the Baltimore model is this dysfunctional! Just saying...

candlin14
candlin14

At this point, we have more concerns then just our head coaching vacancy. We need to be figuring out the following:


1) how to restructure Matt Ryans contract!!! If he wants better pass protection or a better run game or a better pass rush, then he will renegotiate this awful contract he is in.

2) who are we going to pursue in free agency?? Obviously signing Jackson and Soliai was a complete embarrassment. Lets go after some pass rushers, linebackers, and a safety.

3) Where can we get additional help on the offensive line???

4) Who is going to be our offensive coordinator???

5) We need a running back who can move the chains and set up play action!!!!


As for the head coach, we just need someone who can understand clock management!!! Thats all!!!  

stugotsNJ
stugotsNJ

Quinn and Bowles will be top candidates for the 49er's, why would they come to this train wreck? 


Josh McDaniels will be named the new Falcons head coach.

candlin14
candlin14

@stugotsNJ


Agreed!! No good coach would want to come to this nightmare. Two idiots making draft picks, one Jerry Jones type owner, and an awful defense that is years away from improvement. 


Sorry, I would take San Fran also.

Stock Market Guru
Stock Market Guru

@stugotsNJ ....McDaniels is staying in NE.  He wants no part of the Atlanat front-office dysfunction.  Quinn is going to the Jets. You can have Bowles, and if Arthur Blank thinks Todd Bowles is a better coach than Rex Ryan, he deserves the next few years of losing and a 1/2 filled PSL-sold stadium in 2017.

ironman falcon
ironman falcon

All this shows is the disorganization within the falcons internal structure. Lets be realistic Bowles and Quinn have limited experience in fact they have only been DC for 2 years. They had very little to do with drafting talent on defense, they arrived to organizations that had a lot of talent and defense and made it work. That is nothing like the situation in Atlanta, you have not one starter on the front seven. Worrilow is a back up at best and he will not get better. You cannot teach speed to the ball, you either have it or you dont, hence why he was not drafted. So that leaves us with Josh McDaniels, really, he made a mess of Denver, and drafted Tebow in the first round. Now you have two GM's and a coach that does not report to either of them. Really?


They are setting up the structure so the coach has basically the final decision on players and Blanks ear.


They will get bowles as coach. He has ties to Armstrong and Mike Tice. The only coaches that actually seem pretty good on the team. They will probably promote Tice to OC. The scary part is a head coach with 2 year as a DC making personnel decisions. This could get really ugly quick. Rise up!




Quackmeyer
Quackmeyer

If McDaniel is hired it will cap a really weird 2 weeks in the Falcon's history.


And will someone explain how TD is not doing the evaluation and drafting of players but has final say on the draft?  Does that mean when the 6th round is completed he says, I don't like it, lets do it over!  Or maybe he just says the draft looks good except that 4th rounder.  Do that round over!

Marvinmooney
Marvinmooney

This search isn't going to be easy.  Blank is interviewing everyone with the false premise that this team is close to being a contender and that the sub-standard roster doesn't need a major over hall. I wouldn't be surprised if every candidate isn't telling him the truth about his team. Blank wants yes men.

jchris57
jchris57

Hopefully Jerry Land East has been spared another clown coach in the great tradition of other Blank hires like Jr. Mora  and Billy Bob Petrino. Don't forget he also once offered TOTAL control of his team to Bill Parcells.

gfw
gfw

Did anyone ever seriously believe that Rex Ryan, the famous straight-talking Rex Ryan, would EVER work for Thomas Dimitroff and Arthur Blank?  Talk about oil and water.  I'll bet after his long meeting those two guys he stopped at the airport to buy a pair of mukluks.

HymanRoth
HymanRoth

The Atlanta Falcons, at this point, are a disaster. Every move, so far, is putrid. The future is bleak.

Sir Arthur, what are you thinking/drinking/smoking? Pioli jacked KC around.

DanJohn
DanJohn

Dan Quinn is a good football coach but he did not create nor draft the players he's coaching. He inherited them in 2013. He's only maintained the already strong defense. To think he could instantly make the Falcons defense good much less great is a gigantic leap of faith. The Falcons don't have the talent. The same holds true for Todd Bowles or anyone else on the Falcons radar. Lets be honest you can't make chicken salad out of __________________ (fill in the blank) 

patriotdog
patriotdog

"Crazy Artie's House of Confusion'

BillFalcon
BillFalcon

The new stadium should be the House of Blankenstein.

patriotdog
patriotdog

By the way, whereas we called Mr Turner's stadium ;'The Ted', can we call Artie's new tax funded playhouse 'The Blank'?

patriotdog
patriotdog

Artie needs to back off.  Either trust Dimitroff  to hire a good coach, or run him off and bring in a GM who can. 

FreeAgentFan
FreeAgentFan

This is not the end of the world. 


Blank has made one good HC hire and that was Smitty. 


Mora and Petrino were not good HC's and remember how Mora embarrassed the org with his Washington comments


At least Petrino came out and left & he did the Falcons a favor truth be told

TadT
TadT

Interestingly enough while I've been critical of Blank's behavior the last season or two, his track record on coach hires has been pretty good.  With the exception of Petrino each hire has been better than the last.  I'll trust that he knows what he's doing here.

TG88
TG88

Mr Blank is going to have to out bid the Jets for the Seahawks DC Dan Quinn.. I like Quinn better than Rex anyway.. Quinn defense was a lot better this year than Rexs...

candlin14
candlin14

@TG88


that doesnt mean Quinn drafted these guys, or signed them in free agency. Just because Quinns defense is better doesnt mean he had anything to do with signing the personnel. Quinn was given a gold mine, and put it to use. That is why coordinators can never be accurately judged. The same goes with Bowles and it 100% goes with McDaniels and Gase. Two of which have all-pro quarterbacks running there offense. 

Stock Market Guru
Stock Market Guru

@TG88 .......you think maybe Seattle had better players ???  Did you see what the Jets GM gave Rex to work with ?


Quinn is going to the NYJ, he's from the area.  You guys blew it by not hiring Rex.

AshleyHarris
AshleyHarris

WOW ANOTHER EPIC FAIL FOR ARTHUR BLANK-NOT ONLY DID HE FAIL TO JUSTIFIABLY KICK TD TO THE CURB AND CONTINUES TO SUCK UP TO FORMER PATRIOT STOOGES(ATTENTION AB- BILL B.RUNS THE PATRIOTS AND EVERYONE ELSE RIDES HIS COATTAILS!) HE PISSED AROUND AND FAILED TO MAKE REX RYAN A GREAT OFFER BEFORE HE LEFT ATLANTA-WHAT ARE YOU DOING MR. BLANK-TRYING TO RUIN THIS FRANCHISE AS FAST AS YOU REVIVED IT? 

Bird of Prey
Bird of Prey

Now Todd Bowels is being considered a lead candidate, WOW, again no HC experience. This is the same DC who Cam Newton /Carolina Panthers and the Falcons ran over. I know he had a lot of injuries on defense, well his injured defense was a 100 times better than Atlanta’s defenses. So how will he build a better Defense and learn to be a head coach at the same time? Dimitroff and Pioli call all the shots except practice. So basically you have a lame duck coach from the start of his tenure. He’s not a named coach which can tell Dimitroff and company we need these players vs. these. We’ll all be right back at this choke point in three years. Todd Bowels is not Mike Tomlin nor is the Detroit DC, period. Oh yeah, you still have to sell PSL, you either better have swagger or win games. When was the last time you see Sports Center spent serious time discussing Atlanta? Let’s see how long after the hire they fade back in the background. Hell, at this point you might as well wait on Seattle’s DC; he at least has Super Bowl experience.

58Supersports
58Supersports

Why would any Coach wish to come to Atlanta...when you have a GM and Asst. that is a joke and the new coach would answer to the Owner. What kind on crap is that? Hire a first class GM and let him hire the damn coach!

didyou
didyou

@58Supersports who is available that you would hire thats better? 2 of the last 3 GMs wouldn't land a job as a scout on the falcons or most other teams.

DawghaveMange
DawghaveMange

Why not wait on a guy like Darrell Bevell? The guy has a proven offensive track record and has worked under some great guys to learn from.


Hire an assistant Head Coach in charge of defense who will run  off some of these poor choices made by the front office.


This group has to toughen up and become guys who love to practice harder so the games become much easier. Too many of these guys do very little early in the week then miraculously are well on Thursday or Friday.

BillFalcon
BillFalcon

Rex went to the AFC championship w/o a competent QB and a great D.  We wanted him because with his proven defensive ability what could he do w/ a top ten QB.

hardworkinman
hardworkinman

Bradley makes the exact point as to why Atlanta didn't need Rex Ryan - four consecutive losing seasons in New York. The Falcons aren't looking for splash and pizzazz, they're looking for a winner. Hopefully, one of the assistant coaches they are looking at will bring a new perspective and a winning attitude.

At the end of the day, it still all comes down to personnel and I don't see anything that Blank has done to improve that area. Falcons should be conducting a GM search right now, too.

DawghaveMange
DawghaveMange

There are too many quality coaches out there who can come in and bring a toughness and a offensive scheme that highlights and uses the best weapons on the roster. Way too much time is spent on which coach can sell tickets. I know what sells tickets....winning and competing each week.

Intruder
Intruder

Why does the media seem to think all Atlanta fans want is sizzle? I got news for you, Bradley, they want a winner, not sizzle. Sizzle fades very quickly when the losing starts.

TadT
TadT

Whatever Bradley... So happy Blank and company is actually seeking a coach that can potentially bring us wins rather than feed the media's trifling drama fetish.  Rex-in-NY is an entirely different media prospect than Rex-in-the Dirty South.  He would've gone from Media Darling to Media Doofus in this market especially if he were not an immediate success.  He's a proven LOSER as a head coach.  NEXT!!

charlestonian77
charlestonian77

what... no chan gailey? he would instantly make the the falcons the best 8-8 team in pro football.  they would never make play offs but they would be consistent as hell.   8-8  9-7  8-8  8-8  8-8  8-8 ...

when the press get on him he would circle the wagons just like he did at tech.

what's  shame is that we didnt fire chan gailey after the 52-3 beat down uga pu on us. this happened after chan gailey admitted planning on beating uga for a whole year before that gem.  so much for chan's planning. eh

can you imagine where we would be now had we signed paul johnson instead of chan gailey?

go jackets

KDinFL
KDinFL

I can't believe that people are actually on this site venting about the Falcons not hiring Rex Ryan!  He has never won ANYTHING!  The Falcons went to the NFC Champ under Mike Smith so Rex going to the AFC Champ is not saying much.  He was 9-7 and 11-5 the years he went.  Since then he's been 8-8, 6-10, 8-8 & 4-12.  Mike Smith's record blows Rex's away.

Get real people!  He's a good DC but he is not head coach material.

PalmBeachFalcon
PalmBeachFalcon

@KDinFL  He went TWICE with Sanchez.  Smith went ONCE and choked away a lead.  There's a reason Smith isn't getting HC interviews and RR had a few.  football execs opinion> your opinion.

Bird of Prey
Bird of Prey

@KDinFL  Uhh, he went to the AFC Championship twice with no QB or offense. I think that says a lot considering he revamped the Jets defense in one season. The Jet’s down fall was the result of a broken front office, and that’s pretty clear around the NFL landscape. It’s all about working with what you have. No one else interviewed by the Falcons has HC experience so you’re looking at four years of learning curb and same old outcomes. Outside of Pittsburgh Tomlin there has been little to no chance of winning a Super Bowl with a first time coach, usually it’s on their second gig.

As far as mike smith, he took a good offense in a time when most of the NFC was average or bellow and won games in the regular season. Guess what, in the playoff’s he’s won only twice (Washington, Seattle), he beat Seattle on a fluke field goal, never beat them again. That’s it, two playoff wins in eight years. WOW

doktrt
doktrt

Its going to be Josh McDaniel because that assures Dimitroff' and Pioli stay employed. Blanks knows nothing about football and I am forming a greater appreciation for Bernie Marcus' contribution to the Home Depot success. To hire anyone out of the New England operation is a mistake unless it is Belichick. Bill Belichick is the brains of that operation. He controls everything and in fact is the New England Patriots. My list 1 Kevin Sumlin-Texas A&M. He has the look and fire in his eyes of a winner. 2- Gary Kubiak 3-Mike Shanahan with Kyle as coordinator and eventual head coach.

PalmBeachFalcon
PalmBeachFalcon

@doktrt  You had me until Sumlin and the fiery eyes comment....and you listed ALL offensive coaches

PalmBeachFalcon
PalmBeachFalcon

Lost in the ineptitude to sign Rex is the FA that would come here to play for Rex.  Also, the best coordinators will go with an established coach.  It's a CRAPshoot as to what we will get now.

tmc
tmc

A. Blank is 0-3 in hiring cordinators to be the head coach (ok, really 0 for 2&1/2 with Mike Smith, but he couldn't get us over the top).

I prefer a coach with positive head coaching experience, but it sure appears that Blank is going down the Cordinators road again... I am not hearing anyone talking about a college coach or a former head coach and that concerns me.


Rory_Bellows
Rory_Bellows

And Eddie Lacy was the guy I wanted the Falcons to draft instead of signing Jackson

AcrusaderO
AcrusaderO

RISE UP….GO HAWKS! Only team in Atlanta worth a crap.

PalmBeachFalcon
PalmBeachFalcon

@AcrusaderO  Dimitroff would do the Wilkins for Manning trade all over if he was Hawks GM.  He also would've drafted Marvin Williams over Chris Paul

AcrusaderO
AcrusaderO

Arthur Blank needs to stay out of football. The guy is a loser. What a mess, the falGOONS are who we thought they were.

Rory_Bellows
Rory_Bellows

Quick!!! Dig up the corpse of Vince Lombardi!