It did not take long for the offseason to start in the NFL. Less than 24 hours after the last regular-season game was played, three teams made huge changes: The Buccaneers and the Rams fired their head coaches, and the Colts cleaned house in the front office.
Not to be outdone, the Jets made noise as well, but not because of any firings. In his end-of-season news conference, coach Rex Ryan announced the team would do away with captains. This was in reaction to Santonio Holmes, a captain in the 2011 season, reportedly quitting on the team in Sunday's loss to the Dolphins.
The Jets look like they're imploding. Retaining Holmes next season is not going to help Rex Ryan win back his team. Holmes is not well-liked, and if the receiver stays on the roster, Ryan risks having another dysfunctional locker room in 2012.
In other Jets news, the team has told people that it can get out of paying Bart Scott the $4 million he's guaranteed for 2012, which would be news to the veteran linebacker. Scott seems to believe he is set for next season, whether he is with the team or not. That situation will be worth watching. One thing I know for certain -- Holmes is going to make $7.5 million next season, as his deal is completely guaranteed.
As for the rest of what I'm hearing:
» By removing Bill Polian as vice chairman, the Colts really are embarking in an entirely new direction in terms of how they procure talent and build a roster. Under Polian, the Colts favored quickness over size, having young players on defense and putting their salary-cap resources into offensive skill players. That likely will all change with a new GM, who will have to come in with a comprehensive organizational plan that includes finding players who fit the team's new philosophy. It also will take some time to turn over the roster.
Owner Jim Irsay seems to know what he wants in his next GM. That will speed up the process, and the new hire will be in a position to quickly make major decisions, including whether or not to retain coach Jim Caldwell. Time is of the essence for the Colts as they enter the most important offseason of their recent history.
» Cowboys offensive line coach Hudson Houck might retire. Former Dolphins coach Tony Sparano would be the leading candidate to replace Houck if he does hang it up. Sparano will be a hot commodity this offseason for vacant offensive line jobs.
» The recent knee injury suffered by the Steelers' Rashard Mendenhall, who was chosen with Pittsburgh's first-round pick in the 2008 draft, is another reminder that taking a running back early is risky. None of this year's Pro Bowl running backs were first-round picks.
» Niners offensive coordinator Greg Roman is high on Penn State's list of head-coaching candidates, but he also will receive a good look from several NFL teams.
» The Bucs need to bring in someone who can command respect and demand the most from their young team, and who also can develop quarterback Josh Freeman. Panthers offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski would be a good choice.
Follow Michael Lombardi on Twitter @michaelombardi