So Tampa Bay suddenly decides to fire Jon Gruden and GM Bruce Allen in mid-January and promote to head coach an anonymous guy who had just been appointed their D coordinator. This is a team that is like $40 some million under the salary cap. You have to wonder if that was Allen's choice or dictated by ownership. Do you think maybe Gruden could have held that team together with two or three all pro talents that money oculd have put on their roster? Whatever, we now have a situation with a number of teams still looking for head coaches, a couple have filled positions with guys that they might want a mulligan on had they known Gruden, Shannahan, et al would be available and a few more, like the Redskins, with unproven coaches on thin ice. I look at the Browns and shake my head. Why hire a guy like Mangini who didn't exactly light it up with the Jets, who probably have more talent than the Browns? Why go to the poisoned "Belichek pool" of coaches again when they have been mostly unsuccessful, eg Crennel, Weis, Mangini? Who would I hire to run my team? There are two schools of thought here. One, is get a younger assistant from a winning program. We see this at work with Jim Schwartz of Tennessee to the Lions, Josh Daniels from the Pats, Spagnuolo from the Giants. The other approach is to hire a seasoned, proven winner. Usually this is tough to impossible, since such coaches are usually either unavailable or have unrealistic demands. The odd thing now is that there is an unprecedented number of such guys on the block, eg, Cowher, Shanahan, Gruden, Holmgren, Brian Billick, all Super Bowl winners, as well as guys like Jim Fassel, Dan Reaves, proven bigtime coaches who want back in. This season has seen stunning success from rookie coaches, but I have to think that is the exception. If you can hire a proven winner, you're foolish to take a chance on a young guy who might or might not pan out.