Now that this year’s coaching musical chairs are done, we can focus on those passed over by NFL organizations. One of the most unexpected names on this list is former Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel. On top of that, one of the excuses circulating around the water cooler for why he wasn’t hired is completely absurd. The physical stature of a former player turned head coach is a new one. If that’s the best these front office executives can come up, that’s pathetic.
“He’s a very large human being. And can be very intimidating to people in an organization.”
That’s exceptionally weird to hear when there are already other coaches leading franchises who are similar in size or bigger than Vrabel. Detroit Lions head coach Dan Campbell is 6 ‘5″, only about an inch or so taller than Vrabel. Ron Rivera is about 6’3” and has kept a head coaching job (until recently) for the past decade. All big, and what could be perceived as, “intimidating” men. However, that doesn’t make them bad guys. This is a league that isn’t shy about employing dudes who’ve allegedly beaten, sexually assaulted, and abused women repeatedly.
Now certain executives are suddenly afraid to hire this big brawny, former player who just ended a stint as head coach? There’s no name attached to this quote from Dianna Russini, but it feels like this probably came from someone within the Titans’ front office. He’d fallen out of favor with the franchise and the writing was on the wall midway through the season.
The fact that Vrabel was left out of the hiring mix isn’t really the issue. He’ll likely jump back in next year, but for someone to use him being a “large human” as a reason for not hiring him is silly. That doesn’t mean those words weren’t uttered behind closed doors, it just sounds bonkers.
Vrabel’s Titans had four winning seasons to begin his tenure, played in an AFC title game, and made the postseason in three of his six years in Nashville. Yes, they had two down years at the end, but overall Vrabel did a solid job. Had they gotten it right at the quarterback position earlier, maybe things would have turned out differently. Regardless, this nonsense about him being an intimidating figure is bull.
There’s also the conspiracy theory angle my colleague, Sean Beckwith, floated last week. He posed the idea of everything Bill Belichick being “shadow-banned” by NFL franchises. A couple of weeks ago, few thought Dan Quinn would land a new gig ahead of Belichick or even Vrabel. Yet, here we are, nearly a week into February with Belichick and Vrabel on the wrong sideline. Maybe there’s something to it.
Original source here
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