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Texans offensive assistant interviews with Redskins

Even though it's a holiday weekend, some interviews are continuing at Redskins Park, and there could be additions to Mike Shanahan's staff before the work week begins Tuesday.

One new candidate in town, according to sources, is Matt LaFleur, an offensive assistant with the Houston Texans, where he worked under new offensive coordinator Kyle Shanahan.

LaFleur has just two seasons of NFL experience, one working with wide receivers and one with quarterbacks. It's unclear whether he'd be in line to receive a promotion if he joined the Redskins, either as the quarterbacks coach or wide receivers coach, or if he would be interviewing for the offensive assistant job currently held by Chris Meidt, one of former coach Jim Zorn's hires.

Meidt, who helped devise the Redskins' play-calling system after former executive Vinny Cerrato handed those duties to offensive consultant Sherman Lewis, is believed to still be in the running for a spot on the staff. A former head coach at Division III St. Olaf College, he also has two years in the NFL, and he worked closely with quarterback Jason Campbell during that time.

In another development, Redskins secondary coach Jerry Gray will not be getting the defensive coordinator job in Seattle; Pete Carroll said during a Sirius Radio appearance Friday that he would retain Gus Bradley.

Our old pal Jason La Canfora (remember when he used to run this joint?) reported Friday night that Gray has been offered a position on Carroll's staff.

That could solve a potential problem for the Redskins. All indications are that Shanahan wants to have Bob Slowik, one of his assistants in Denver, on this staff, and Slowik specializes in coaching defensive backs. Gray interviewed for both the head coaching job and the defensive coordinator position with Washington, so firing him could be awkward. He left Washington last week uncertain whether Shanahan intended to keep him on the staff, but the simple fact that the Redskins granted permission to the Seahawks might indicate Washington doesn't expect to keep Gray.

There has been no word yet on whether Richard Mann, the Tampa Bay receivers coach who interviewed in Ashburn last week, has been offered a spot on the Redskins' staff. The Tampa Tribune reported that the Redskins' targeted a second Bucs coach - linebackers coach Joe Barry - but Tampa Bay wouldn't grant Washington permission to interview him.

The Redskins have hired Lou Spanos from the Steelers, but Spanos was a quality control coach who rose to the rank of assistant linebackers coach - he wasn't the team's top linebackers coach - so it's conceivable the Redskins could be targeting more coaching help at that position. That could also be why current Redskins coach Kirk Olivadotti hasn't yet been told his fate and why he could be back next season as an assistant linebackers coach.

The staff should round into shape next week. Coaches such as Danny Smith (special teams), Scott Wachenheim (tight ends), and Steve Jackson (safeties) all hope to have spots on Shanahan's staff.

By Barry Svrluga and Rick Maese  |  January 16, 2010; 10:50 AM ET
Categories:  Mike Shanahan  
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Next: Spanos hiring official; Olivadotti is retained

Comments

I've been asking the Twitter world for ideas on who might be coaching the Redskins offensive live and Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) was the only one who could provide some info. Here's what he said:

Solari in Seattie is gonna get a good look from what I hear.

Posted by: mmeixler | January 16, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

Oh yeah, and FIRST

Posted by: mmeixler | January 16, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Another offensive assistant from the Texans.

I think the deck is lining up to discard JC17 and pick up Rex Grossman to be the team's 1-2 year seat-warming-starter-then-veteran-backup while the Shannies develop a young QB.

Posted by: p1funk | January 16, 2010 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Gee, I posted the LaFleur news yesterday. Score one for me!

Posted by: noonefromtampa | January 16, 2010 11:38 AM | Report abuse

Using the powers of the internet I have learned that Solari worked with Shanahan in SanFran when they won a Super Bowl, and also was the Kansas City Chief's o-line coach for more than a decade, so Shanny should know him well from their AFC West battles. Dude seems like a top notch position coach and I think it'd be a major hire if we can get him from Seattle. Here's a video with him for those of you who like to watch:

http://www.seahawks.com/media-lounge/videos/2008-Mini-Camp---Mike-Solari/90b11695-444a-4b4e-8614-b08062b8705e

Posted by: mmeixler | January 16, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Another offensive assistant from the Texans.

I think the deck is lining up to discard JC17 and pick up Rex Grossman to be the team's 1-2 year seat-warming-starter-then-veteran-backup while the Shannies develop a young QB.

Posted by: p1funk | January 16, 2010 11:37 AM

I'm starting to get the same feeling. Grossman knows the offense and a move to Grossman might be an easier transition for the Skins. I think it's a lateral move at best, if not a step backward at the QB position. A move to Grossman would mean a QB drafted in either round 1 or round2.

Posted by: TWISI | January 16, 2010 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Grossman = Todd Collins

Knows the offense, can come in if starter goes down. I guess he could come in and take lumps while a pup gets up to speed... but i see him as relieving TC of his job.

Posted by: SkinsfaninKaneohe | January 16, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

I'm starting to get the same feeling. Grossman knows the offense and a move to Grossman might be an easier transition for the Skins. I think it's a lateral move at best, if not a step backward at the QB position. A move to Grossman would mean a QB drafted in either round 1 or round2.

Posted by: TWISI

You can't possibly believe that Rex Grossman and JC would be an even exchange or a "lateral move." Rex Grossman? Won't happen, at least for another year.

Posted by: dcwun | January 16, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

Sorry TWISI. Missed the part where you said a step backwards.

Posted by: dcwun | January 16, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Grossman = Todd Collins

Knows the offense, can come in if starter goes down. I guess he could come in and take lumps while a pup gets up to speed... but i see him as relieving TC of his job.

Posted by: SkinsfaninKaneohe

Collins was in Saunders offense for 8 plus years. I think Rex just got to the Houston last year. They are similar, but different. I would take TC in any system before Rex Grossman.

Posted by: dcwun | January 16, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse

PLEASE... NO REX GROSSMAN!!!

Posted by: tony325 | January 16, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

JC17 will be on the roster, and CP26 will not.

Posted by: hbu_dog | January 16, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

I still of the belief that JC should be on the team next year. Len P. over on ESPN wrote about the the teams with the greatest sack differential are the teams advancing deeper in the playoffs. That is an indication that the OL and protection schemes, and the DL and blitz schemes are a high premium. The Skins failed last year at both the OL talent level and in their pressure schemes. Haslet should help in the latter area. Acquiring talent on the OL is the major issue facing the team.

Posted by: TWISI | January 16, 2010 12:22 PM | Report abuse

Patrick Ramsey knows the offense too LOL

Posted by: ATLredskin | January 16, 2010 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Okay I guess I was the only one who was anxious to find out who might be coaching our O-line. To me that's far more important that potential backup quarterbacks.

Posted by: mmeixler | January 16, 2010 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Please get Steve Jackson out of here..

Posted by: the_wickster2000 | January 16, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

mmeixler Solari seems likke a find choice. There is also the OL coach of the Saints who worked with Bruce Allen in Oakland and Tampa, and Kyle Shanahan in Tampa. If the Saints loose tonight, he might be an option as well. Now, back to the QB discussion..JK.

Posted by: TWISI | January 16, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

just nice to be recognized, TWISI

Posted by: mmeixler | January 16, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

TWISI, you may be right about NO

he sounds like a good choice

Entering his second season with the Saints, Aaron Kromer takes over as offensive line/running game after serving as running backs coach in 2008. For Kromer – an 18-year coaching veteran – it will be a seamless transition in a career where he has built a track record of success tutoring outstanding offensive linemen. He will also be involved in the design and blocking schemes of the rushing attack.

Kromer arrived in New Orleans in 2008 after a three-year stint with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, including his final two as senior assistant/offensive line coach. He has developed the skills of a handful of Pro Bowl blockers during his time in the NFL, and the former college offensive lineman is known for his teaching skills and attention to detail.

Posted by: noonefromtampa | January 16, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

At Tampa Bay in 2007, Kromer coached an offensive line that cleared the way for the Buccaneers to rush for 1,872 yards and average nearly 327 yards of offense per game. That season, G Arron Sears earned All-Rookie honors under Kromer’s tutelage. In 2006, despite his unit losing a total of 23 starts from injuries, Kromer prepared a pair of rookie starters weekly and Tampa Bay cracked the 1,500-yard rushing milestone.

He was the senior assistant for the Buccaneers in 2005, working primarily with the offensive line. The Buccaneers surpassed the 100-yard rushing plateau in 10 contests, and Kromer helped polish the skills of All-Rookie selection G Dan Buenning. Following the season, Kromer was selected by former Bucs coach Jon Gruden to attend the NFL’s Coaches Career Development Symposium.

Kromer arrived in Tampa Bay after spending four seasons with Oakland as the offensive line coach from 2002-04 and assistant offensive line coach in 2001. The Raiders’ offensive front was the foundation of a unit that led the NFL in total offense in 2002 – the same season the club advanced to Super Bowl XXXVII.

While in Oakland, Kromer tutored Pro Bowl selections T Lincoln Kennedy (2001-02) and C Barrett Robbins (2002) and also coached 2004 All-Rookie selection T Robert Gallery. Prior to joining the Raiders – his first NFL assignment – Kromer served as the offensive line coach at Northwestern from 1999-2000, with the Wildcats leading the Big Ten in total offense in his final season.

Posted by: noonefromtampa | January 16, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

I've been asking the Twitter world for ideas on who might be coaching the Redskins offensive live and Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) was the only one who could provide some info. Here's what he said:

Solari in Seattie is gonna get a good look from what I hear.

Posted by: mmeixler

Hey, thanks, good research. Any chance you can sound out your sources re any FA OL pickups?

Posted by: boothintexas | January 16, 2010 12:43 PM | Report abuse

While in Oakland, Kromer tutored Pro Bowl selections T Lincoln Kennedy (2001-02) and C Barrett Robbins (2002) and also coached 2004 All-Rookie selection T Robert Gallery. Prior to joining the Raiders – his first NFL assignment – Kromer served as the offensive line coach at Northwestern from 1999-2000, with the Wildcats leading the Big Ten in total offense in his final season.

Posted by: noonefromtampa

Good job on the research, too, Tampa. Man, I feel like I'm getting a tutorial from you guys today. If the disorganized crew that is the RI militia gave out promos, you guys would rate one. Kudos.

Posted by: boothintexas | January 16, 2010 12:49 PM | Report abuse

As far as FA OL I think someone you need to keep an eye on is Eugene Amano of the Titans. Though with the Lichtensteiger pick up a Guard/Center might not be as necessary... even one who helped block for a 2,000 yard rusher and is known for his ability to block in space and get to the second level.

http://www.titansonline.com/team/roster/Eugene-Amano/361fd6ea-1786-4a13-a4b7-4a6293e423e4

Posted by: mmeixler | January 16, 2010 12:52 PM | Report abuse

You know, I appreciate the purge as much as anyone else but shouldn't some of the coaches that did a great job in Debacle '09 be rewarded with a good job?

Specifically, Kirk Olivadotti and Chris Meidt.

Posted by: charley42 | January 16, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

As far as FA OL I think someone you need to keep an eye on is Eugene Amano of the Titans. Though with the Lichtensteiger pick up a Guard/Center might not be as necessary... even one who helped block for a 2,000 yard rusher and is known for his ability to block in space and get to the second level.

http://www.titansonline.com/team/roster/Eugene-Amano/361fd6ea-1786-4a13-a4b7-4a6293e423e4

Posted by: mmeixler |

Awesome, thanks. Hey Cindy or JR or Rick or Dan, if you need a guest analyst on your next podcast, you need to get in touch with ol' mmeixler here. We're talking graduate level journalistic research here. Good stuff.

Posted by: boothintexas | January 16, 2010 12:58 PM | Report abuse

Scouting report on Toby Gerhart, RB from Stanford...

http://www.walterfootball.com/scoutingreport2010tgerhart.php

Posted by: TDawg1 | January 16, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse


They said the best player comparison is Ladell Betts.

We already have a Ladell Betts.

Sorry. I'll pass on using a draft pick on Betts 2.0.

I think next season a healthy Portis can gives us most everything that they say Gerhart can give a team.

If we are gonna burn a pick on a RB, I'd like him to have speed and home-run potentil.

Posted by: p1funk | January 16, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse
I would have to think about him if he fell to the 4th round. We have LBetts, but he is recovering from knee, and may not make it back. I think we waive LB, and lood for a replacement, and Gerhart would be a fine replacement.

Posted by: frediefritz | January 16, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Grossman = Todd Collins

Knows the offense, can come in if starter goes down. I guess he could come in and take lumps while a pup gets up to speed... but i see him as relieving TC of his job.

Posted by: SkinsfaninKaneohe | January 16, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

I think you're right on with that comment, Kaneohe.

Posted by: frediefritz | January 16, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

I just hope that the Redskins bring in someone with the heart and gonads that Bugel had! The man was awsome! Great teacher also! We need someone just like that for this line!

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet | January 16, 2010 1:18 PM | Report abuse

I would take TC in any system before Rex Grossman.

Posted by: dcwun | January 16, 2010 12:16 PM | Report abuse
TC is already 38, has a big contract if he's on the roster, but has no upside. Grossman would turn 30 at beginning of next season. I would pursue Grossman if he is a free agent. But he is probably under contract with Texans.

Posted by: frediefritz | January 16, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

What are you guys on???? REX GROSSMAN SUCKS A S S!!!!

Posted by: hanimal03 | January 16, 2010 1:19 PM | Report abuse

Oh BTW Go Vikings F-Dallas!!

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet | January 16, 2010 1:22 PM | Report abuse

Olivadotti has been retained as defensive assistant.

Posted by: boothintexas | January 16, 2010 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Another offensive assistant from the Texans.

I think the deck is lining up to discard JC17 and pick up Rex Grossman to be the team's 1-2 year seat-warming-starter-then-veteran-backup while the Shannies develop a young QB.

Posted by: p1funk | January 16, 2010 11:37 AM

If we need a couple of years from some qb then why not get Sage Rosenfels. He knows the offense too. He has to be better than Rex.

Posted by: wattsicon | January 16, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

2nd that...

Go Vikes, Favrarvvre, and the Purple People Eaters! F the F'in Dallas Cowpies!

Posted by: Oogalaboogala | January 16, 2010 1:33 PM | Report abuse

boothintexas, how do you know that?

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet | January 16, 2010 1:34 PM | Report abuse


boothintexas, how do you know that?

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet

Official Redskins News website


http://www.redskins.com/news/

Posted by: boothintexas | January 16, 2010 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Please coach Shanahan for the love of all things holy get rid of DANNY FREAKING SMITH! One of the worst special teams coaches in the league!

Posted by: templetontherat1978 | January 16, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

"What are you guys on???? REX GROSSMAN SUCKS A S S!!!!"

Lol!

Yeah, gimmie JC any day over that guy and I am not particularly thrilled with JC.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | January 16, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

I doubt they bring Grossman in as he is a turnover machine. There is one free agent QB out there who is not only highly skilled in the West Coast offense but is also familiar with the NFC East. Jeff Garcia...bank on it.

Posted by: anacostia85 | January 16, 2010 1:51 PM | Report abuse

Let me be clear... I don't really want Grossman OR Collins on next year's roster.

But given the choice, I'd take Grossman in a "guy how has started and won't completely crap the bed if he is forced into action" and/or in a "get 2-6 starts while the #4 pick drafted rookie(clausen?, bradford?) gets his head around the offense while taking 50%+ of the snaps in practice" role.

If it was completely up to me, JC stays and competes for the job, Colt gets a real look and shot to prove he can be the man or not, and somebody like a Grossman or another journeyman who wont freak out if forced into action is brought in to be the number two at best.

On offense, I'd build the line, and get a speed back this year and evaluate at the end of 2010 whether i was good at QB, or if needed to make a move to get a Locker or other presently unidentified stud. Smart with a strong accurate arm is what is needed.

If 2011 is a goner year due to labor/management food fight, Barkley is going to have played 3 years at USC. I think THAT kid could be real good, and the freshman at Texas looks like he is going to be real good to.

Bottom line, i think we should roll with who we got at QB for 2010. If we grab a QB at #4 a) those guys are not worth it in my mind, and b) there is strong chance they would get "ramseyed" anyway and most likely never recover. We need to turn the number 4 into 3 players who start.

Posted by: SkinsfaninKaneohe | January 16, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

excellent assessment SkinsfaninKaneohe...i totally agree with that logic

skins must build the o line and get the right pieces in place (RB and WR) before going and getting a QB...even a rookie QB (flacco, ryan, sanchez) can make the transition look pretty seamless with the right talent around him

Posted by: AhsanFamily | January 16, 2010 2:00 PM | Report abuse

boothintexas, Thanks Bro.

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet | January 16, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

I am a Skins fan living in New Orleans, and I think it will be very interesting to see what happens to the Saints Jammal Brown after this season. He has been on injured reserve since the preseason with a sports hernia, and obviously the Saints have done pretty well without him. Brown has played both right and left tackle and is a two time pro bowler, though I think he is considered a better pass blocker than run blocker. Assuming he is now healthy, I am wondering if the Saints will let him go or try to trade him rather than pay him the rest of his contract. I wonder what it would take to get him in a Skins uniform?

Posted by: jaypem | January 16, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

honk honk

Posted by: p1funk | January 16, 2010 2:13 PM | Report abuse

The Redskins have announced that they have named Lou Spanos as their linebackers coach and retained Kirk Olivadotti as defensive assistant.

Spanos comes to Washington after spending the previous 15 seasons as a defensive assistant with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Posted by: noonefromtampa | January 16, 2010 2:14 PM | Report abuse

IMO if Jeff Garcia is out there go get him!! Garcia any day over Grossman! ANY DAY!!

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet | January 16, 2010 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Rex Grossman sucks !!!!!!!

Your crazy!!!!!

Posted by: SkinsFan37years | January 16, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

"What are you guys on???? REX GROSSMAN SUCKS A S S!!!!"

Lol!

Yeah, gimmie JC any day over that guy and I am not particularly thrilled with JC.

- Ray

Posted by: rmcazz | January 16, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse
No, I expect them to keep JC. We need a backup tho. I'm not sure Colt is ready, so I would not be opposed to bringing Grossman in as a backkup, better than TC now. I wouldn't give up anything to get him, but if Texans waive him, I'd be fine with him as backup.

Posted by: frediefritz | January 16, 2010 2:33 PM | Report abuse

Grossman-Hell No, Garcia or Brennen-Hell yes!!

Posted by: vexed50verizonnet | January 16, 2010 2:37 PM | Report abuse

The Redskins will not draft a running back in the 1st round. Even his eminence the Portoise was not drafted by Shanahan in the 1st round. The guy (Shanahan) appears to be an expert at identifying good running back talent in the lower rounds.

Posted by: periculum | January 16, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

its wearying to use examples to show why (besides the obvious salary cap implications) the Redskins, and especially Shanahan would not draft either a running back in the upper rounds ... nor, like Vinny, Mel Kiper's wide receiver set ... in your own division people, Miles Austin? Compare his stats to yet another 1st round bust at wide-out drafted by Detroit, Roy E. Williams. The guy has 4.47 speed yet went undrafted ... perhaps because he is a white guy ~smiles~ (harry reid irony insertion) ... yet he has clearly outperformed every wide out they have had in a very, very long time. So ... do you really want to draft a potential bust when your offensive line desperately needs help? And then the defensive backfield? Stop playing fantasy football like our fearless owner ... start thinking about who fits and wants to win, and who doesn't. However, clearly Fred Davis was not a mistake and makes Cooley's position on the squad very tentative at this point.

Posted by: periculum | January 16, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Unless Shanahan strongly feels they will probably not fit Gray is in trouble ... well because without all-pro types like Taylor and Springs what was the DB set like? He won't exclude JC, Todd, or Colt until he is sure he can replace them with someone who is guaranteed to be a heckuvalot better than what they currently bring to the table. And that seems unlikely. Plus they are really, really cheap. But yes, the owner will be on his butt because "the owner" is trying to live down this embarrassing season watching the cowboys who had a pretty ugly draft WIN THE DIVISION? So, Allen and Shanahan will liikely jump if the opportunity presents itself ... right now the only one that may be out there is Brett Favre ... :)

Posted by: periculum | January 16, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

miles austin is not a "white guy' and I doubt very seriously that any "white receiver in the nfl has 4.47 speed and h. reid and many other "whites also speak in dialects many around this country most of them unless you are from the area hard to decipher..but because of "so-called white"supremacy(you are hardly supreme in any way shape or form) many whites believe or make believe they speak so-called english correctly and negroes don't. Well misanthropes why did you forbid blacks to speak their own languages and tongues in this land and around the world wherever they resided? easy answer: to inculcate them with YOUR way of thinking, white is beautiful and black is evil and all the other LIES that go along with it.

Posted by: wathu19 | January 17, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

LOL at perc, Miles Austin is a light skinned Black guy.

Posted by: 72Redskins | January 17, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

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