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Ron Rivera will be a popular interviewee this week (1 Viewer)


Ron Rivera will be a Head Coach someday in the NFL, although I don't think he will be in 2006.However, Rivera is a hispanic - and for that reason coupled with the Bears strong season, I anticipate at least four NFL teams to talk to him this week, as they can't talk to him after that until the Bears are eliminated from the playoffs (aka after they win the Super Bowl ;) )

Grand Rapids Press mentioned on 01/02/06 that he was heading to Detroit for interview this week by Lion's beat wrtier, Tom Kowalski.

Interest in Coordinator Rivera No Surprise to BearsHead Coach Smith Expects Assistant to Get a ChanceBy ANDREW SELIGMAN, APLAKE FOREST, Ill. (Jan. 2) - To Chicago Bears head coach Lovie Smith, it's no surprise defensive coordinator Ron Rivera is in demand."He will be contacted, I'm sure," Smith said Monday. "If you're looking for a head football (coach) right now, wouldn't you want to contact him?"The St. Louis Rams would like to do that.After firing Mike Martz Monday, Rams president John Shaw said the team asked permission to speak to Rivera. New Orleans, Green Bay, Minnesota, Houston and Kansas City also have openings. Detroit, which fired Steve Mariucci during the season, might not keep interim coach **** Jauron, and the Oakland Raiders are considering letting Norv Turner go.When suitors call, Rivera could mention that the Bears went from 5-11 last season to 11-5 with a first-round playoff bye. He could point to a defense that was ranked No. 1 for seven weeks before relinquishing the top spot in Sunday's 34-10 loss at Minnesota - a game in which the starters either sat out or were pulled early. He could also mention that the Bears allowed the fewest points in the NFL (12.6 per game) in his second season.Rivera was not available for comment, but Smith had plenty to say about his defensive coordinator."As teams look at Ron, they should look at what he was able to do with our defense this year," Smith said. "We have a lot of smart football people out there, and I think they'll look at that."The Bears' defense isn't exactly a secret. As the season wore on, it became apparent that Rivera's name would surface in head-coaching searches.Two years ago, Smith was in a similar situation.He had just completed his third season as defensive coordinator in St. Louis, and Martz "did a great job" helping Smith land the Bears job."Ron has done a great job for us here," Smith said. "He deserves an opportunity to run his own team. This is the ideal week to do it. It's a bye week for us. And I told Ron whatever he needs to do, when he needs to do it this week, to do that. Just let me know what I can do to help. I think his resume speaks for itself."The Bears, meanwhile, have two weeks to prepare for their first playoff game since January 2002, when they had a bye and lost by 14 to Philadelphia. Three losing seasons followed, and things did not look good in the preseason, when starting quarterback Rex Grossman broke his left ankle. He missed the first 13 games, but the Bears stayed relatively healthy. They won eight straight and 10 of their last 12 behind their defense, offensive line and running game.The line protected rookie quarterback Kyle Orton and opened holes for Thomas Jones, who became the first Bear not named Walter Payton to pass the 1,300-yard rushing mark."It's a great feeling to have your name mentioned with him, especially," said Jones, who finished the regular season with 1,335 yards. "I grew up admiring him my whole life, so as a running back, even to be playing here in Chicago where he played and to see his name all over, obviously to have your name mentioned with him is something special."The defense relinquished the No. 1 ranking to Tampa Bay after allowing a season-high 396 yards on Sunday, but the Bears were adamant that theirs is the best."I think we know we are No. 1," linebacker Brian Urlacher said. "I don't think yards equal wins. Yards are big, but points are the main thing that matters. We did not play very well and gave up a bunch of yards and I think we lost our No. 1 status, but points are a big deal and I think we hold that."01/02/06 18:46 EST

This begs the question: does Rivera count for the NFL's token-minority-interview process? :rolleyes:


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