NFL Week 17 Live: Coaching buzz, playoff permutations on last week
Hate, hate, hate the end of the NFL's regular season. The postponement of last week's Sunday night game was a cold slap of a reminder of what lies ahead. Sure, "The Sound of Music" is a toe-tapper, but it ain't fubball, is it? Week 17 is especially bitter this week: when will we next see a full slate of regular-season games? (Dan Graziano on why Tuesday is a big day for the labor situation.)
(Timeout to address that Tuesday night game: It was wonderful and showed that the NFL is a better fit for Tuesday than for Thursday or Saturday. Dudes may have seemed a little less dudely, as Gov. Ed Rendell said, after the Eagles-Vikings postponement, but it carried a surprising lesson: stripped-down prime-time NFL is fun.)
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How many coaching vacancies will there be in 24 hours? Jason Garrett in Dallas and Leslie Frazier in Minnesota reportedly are in, leaving openings in San Francisco and Carolina and who knows where else? Among those who could be on the outs: Eric Mangini in Cleveland, Marvin Lewis in Cincinnati, Jeff Fisher (over the Vince Young situation) in Tennessee, Tom Cable in Oakland, Tony Sparano in Miami.
Most reports have Tom Coughlin safe with the New York Giants and Gary Kubiak safe in Houston (although he may be joined by Wade Phillips). Where will Jim Harbaugh end up? With a pro gig or at the University of Michigan? Will Bill Cowher and Jon Gruden coach again? Will Fisher move to another team? Will Fox yakker Brian Billick return to coaching? (Another former coach, Jimmy Johnson, said on the Fox pregame show, "I would hire Brian Billick over a lot of names that are being talked about." Billick's response? The desire to coach never goes away, but it'd have to be the right partnership situation.)
Troy Polamalu will play today for the Steelers. Brett Favre will not. He's finished, right?
| January 2, 2011; 12:25 PM ET
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