Ravens candidates

December 29, 1998|By Ken Murray

A list of a dozen coaches who most likely will appear on the Ravens' list of candidates. Here's how they stack up:

Mike Holmgren

Age: 50.

Current position: Head coach, Green Bay Packers.

Experience: Has an 84-41 record (1-1 in the Super Bowl) in seven seasons with Packers. Spent six years with San Francisco as an assistant.

What he'd bring to the job: Holmgren took Bill Walsh's West Coast offense and modified it to his talent -- and climate -- in Green Bay. Draws and sweeps keep his offense balanced. His passing game works off slants and screens and Brett Favre's improvisational skills.

George Seifert

Age: 58.

Current position: Announcer, CBS.

Experience: Posted best winning percentage (108-35, .755) and won two Super Bowl titles during his eight-year run as coach of the 49ers (1989-1996).

What he'd bring to the job: Seifert is a defensive specialist who spent 12 years on Walsh's staffs at San Francisco (nine years) and Stanford (three years). Got to 50 and 75 wins faster than any other coach in NFL history.

Brian Billick

Age: 44.

Current position: Offensive coordinator, Minnesota Vikings.

Experience: Seven years in NFL, six as a coordinator, during which time he produced the top three season yardage totals in Vikings history (and five of their top 10).

What he'd bring to the job: Billick is a new-wave coach who uses digitized video displays in his coaching. His three-wide-receiver sets have been nearly impossible to defend this year with the addition of Randy Moss. And he got Randall Cunningham to stay in the pocket.

Gary Kubiak

Age: 37.

Current position: Offensive coordinator, Denver Broncos.

Experience: In his fifth season as an NFL coach, the last four with the Broncos as coordinator. Has coached Steve Young (1994) and John Elway in his career.

What he'd bring to the job: Although Kubiak does not call plays, he is responsible for the entire week's preparation in Denver. A nine-year backup quarterback to Elway, he was more a student of the game than a gifted athlete and has cultivated those skills as a coach.

Willie Shaw

Age: 54.

Current position: Defensive coordinator, Oakland Raiders.

Experience: Spent three years as a coordinator, two with St. Louis Rams, in his 11-year NFL coaching career.

What he'd bring to the job: The Raiders made the huge leap from the 30th-ranked defense in the league to the fifth-best this season with Shaw's pressure schemes. He loves to blitz, especially on first down and on running downs, demands relentless pursuit and is a good communicator.

Jim Haslett

Age: 43.

Current position: Defensive coordinator, Pittsburgh Steelers.

Experience: Has been a coordinator the last three years, one in New Orleans, during six-year NFL coaching career.

What he'd bring to the job: Haslett is a young, aggressive coach who was a two-time Pro Bowl player with the Buffalo Bills. As the Steelers' coordinator, he endorsed the pressure schemes that dominated Pittsburgh defense in the 1990s.

Tyrone Willingham

Age: Turns 45 tomorrow.

Current position: Head coach, Stanford.

Experience: Became the Cardinal coach in 1995 after three years as a running backs coach with the Vikings. Went 3-8 this season and has a four-year record of 22-23-1 with two bowl appearances.

What he'd bring to the job: Willingham is a soft-spoken disciplinarian who doesn't use profanity or raise his voice. A former walk-on quarterback at Michigan State, he worked with Billick three years in Minnesota.

Nick Saban

Age: 47.

Current position: Head coach, Michigan State.

Experience: Served four years as defensive coordinator under Bill Belichick with the Cleveland Browns from 1991-94. Left for the job at Michigan State, where he went 6-6 this year after losing three straight bowl games.

What he'd bring to the job: With Saban's aggressive schemes, the Browns allowed a league-low 204 points and ranked seventh in total yards in their last playoff season of 1994. He also worked under Jerry Glanville with the Houston Oilers.

Sherman Lewis

Age: 56.

Current position: Offensive coordinator, Packers.

Experience: Spent last six years with Packers and eight years with 49ers, collecting a total of four Super Bowl rings.

What he'd bring to the job: Lewis has worked in the West Coast offense his entire NFL coaching career, under Walsh and Holmgren. He's an articulate, soft-spoken, no-nonsense coach.

Art Shell

Age: 52.

Current position: Offensive line coach, Atlanta Falcons.

Experience: Posted a six-year record of 56-41 as coach of the Los Angeles Raiders between 1989 and 1994.

What he'd bring to the job: After Shell took the Raiders to the playoffs three times in six years, he was fired for a 9-7 campaign. They haven't been to the postseason since. Coming out of Maryland State (now UMES) in 1968, he was an eight-time Pro Bowl pick and Hall of Fame tackle for the Raiders.

Chris Palmer

Age: 49.

ZTC Current position: Offensive coordinator, Jacksonville Jaguars.

Experience: Had to break in four quarterbacks for career first starts in two seasons at Jacksonville, going 2-2 in those games. Has spent nine years in NFL and was head coach at Boston University and New Haven at college level.

What he'd bring to the job: With a strong command of the pro passing game, Palmer was credited for his work with Drew Bledsoe in New England's 1996 Super Bowl season.

Dom Capers

Age: 48.

Current position: Fired by the Carolina Panthers yesterday.

Experience: Took the Panthers to the NFC championship game in their second season and posted a four-year record of 31-35.

What he'd bring to the job: Capers is a meticulous coach who plots everything he and his team do. He helped make the zone blitz the rage while a defensive coordinator with the Steelers from 1992-94.

Pub Date: 12/29/98

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