Good morning and ROOOOAAAARRRRR!!!
One of the final positions on the Detroit Lions' staff that needs to be filled might be one of its most important -- offensive coordinator.
On Monday in Mobile, Ala., the team interviewed Cincinnati quarterbacks coach Ken Zampese, the son of Ernie Zampese, for the position, according to ESPN Insider Adam Caplan.
Zampese is the first real name to surface for the position since Bill Lazor took the Miami offensive coordinator position the day after Jim Caldwell was hired. Lions general manager Martin Mayhew addressed the issue with reporters Monday evening at the Senior Bowl.
"There’s several spots that we haven’t filled. It’s just sort of a process. Some of them, for example, when we interviewed Coach Caldwell, one of the first guys that he talked about was Ron Prince," Mayhew told reporters in Alabama. "We were able to get Ron Prince in, get him signed. It was something they had talked about prior to Coach Caldwell getting this job. They had a relationship, a previous relationship.
"Some of those fell into place a little quicker because of a previous relationship or guys knowing that they wanted to go with Coach Caldwell. Some of the other spots are taking a little bit longer but I don’t think we’re probably in any different situation than any other teams that made changes. I think we’re on the same timetable with say Minnesota, Tennessee and some of the other teams."
Zampese has been Cincinnati's quarterbacks coach since 2003. He has been an offensive coordinator for one season, with Northern Arizona in 1995.
Mayhew said the team has interviews lined up for potential coordinators, but declined to say who is on the list of options. Offensive coordinator is one of the positions the Lions still need to fill, along with wide receivers coach, quarterbacks coach and defensive backs coach, among others.
Mayhew also indicated he had no timetable for making the offensive coordinator hire and that he was pleased to see eight coaches retained from the prior staff.
"We have some quality coaches on our staff, there’s some quality coaches," Mayhew told reporters. "We were talking earlier today because we were just getting people reaching out to us about the spots that we have open, there are more good coaches in this league then there are spots.
"There are a bunch of good football coaches out there that are available and we’re just trying to make the best decision for us right now. But there’s certainly a lot of good football coaches out there."
Dave Birkett from the Detroit Free Press reported on the defensive backs coach front, the Lions interviewed their secondary coach from last season, Marcus Robertson.
And now, a look around the Interwebs in search of Lions news:
The Baltimore Sun is reporting former Lions offensive coordinator Scott Linehan interviewed with the Ravens for the position vacated by ... Caldwell.
Birkett writes that defensive coordinator Teryl Austin was a "father figure" to Florida in 2010. Birkett also writes that Mayhew said Nick Fairley needs to mature to be consistent. Nate Burleson said Calvin Johnson sent out nasty pictures of his finger, writes Carlos Monarrez of the Free Press.
Burleson is optimistic about next season, writes Paula Pasche in the Oakland Press.
The Lions are holding off on personnel decisions until their full coaching staff is in place, writes Justin Rogers of MLive. Rogers also writes the Lions are setting the league standard in hiring diversity in the front office and coaching staff.