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NFL Rumors: Mike Vrabel Interviews for Falcons HC Job amid Belichick, Harbaugh Buzz

Erin Walsh

Former Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Vrabel is in the running for the Atlanta Falcons' head coaching vacancy.

Vrabel is interviewing with the Falcons on Wednesday, according to NFL Network's Tom Pelissero, tossing his name into a ring that also includes former New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh.

The 48-year-old is also expected to meet with the Carolina Panthers on Thursday, according to ESPN's Jeff Darlington.

Vrabel spent the last six seasons of his career as head coach of the Titans before being fired following a 6-11 finish to the 2023 campaign.

The former NFL linebacker and three-time Super Bowl champion led Tennessee to four straight winning seasons and three playoff appearances from 2018 through 2021. However, it became clear things had taken a turn for the worse over the last two seasons as the Titans went 13-21 in that span.

Before serving as head coach of the Titans, Vrabel served as defensive coordinator of the Houston Texans in 2017 and was also the franchise's linebackers coach from 2014-2016. He began his coaching career in 2011 as the linebackers coach for his alma mater Ohio State and he also served as the program's defensive line coach from 2012-2013.

The Falcons are looking for a replacement for Arthur Smith, who went 21-30 in his three seasons as head coach before being fired after a third straight 7-10 finish in 2023.

While it was initially believed that Belichick was the frontrunner for Atlanta's head coaching vacancy after he was reportedly flown out on team owner Arthur Blank's private jet, ESPN's Michael Rothstein reported Saturday that the search remains "wide open."

In addition to Belichick, the Falcons have also interviewed Panthers defensive coordinator Ejiro Evero and Los Angeles Rams defensive coordinator Raheem Morris twice.

Houston Texans offensive coordinator Bobby Slowik, Baltimore Ravens defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald, San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks, Ravens defensive line and assistant head coach Anthony Weaver, Philadelphia Eagles offensive coordinator Brian Johnson, Detroit Lions defensive coordinator Aaron Glenn, Lions offensive coordinator Ben Johnson and Buffalo Bills offensive coordinator Joe Brady are among those to also have interviewed with the Falcons.

The Panthers, meanwhile, are aiming to replace Frank Reich, who was fired following a 1-10 start to the 2023 campaign.

Evero, Brian Johnson, Ben Johnson, Macdonald, Morris and Dallas Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn are among those to have already interviewed for Carolina's coaching vacancy.


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