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Ravens interview Sparano, Garrett; will talk to Ryan

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- The Baltimore Ravens interviewed a pair of Dallas Cowboys assistants for their vacant head coaching position Saturday.

Tony Sparano, the Cowboys' assistant head coach, and Jason Garrett, their offensive coordinator, met with the Ravens a day after the team interviewed Indianapolis Colts assistant head coach Jim Caldwell.

Brian Billick, who went 80-64 and won a Super Bowl in his nine seasons, was fired Monday along with his staff after going 5-11 in 2007.

The Ravens were scheduled to meet Sunday with Billick's defensive coordinator, Rex Ryan, whose defenses were ranked fifth, first and sixth overall in his three seasons.

"I would definitely like to see Rex get his shot," defensive lineman Kelly Gregg said.

Ryan is also expected to interview with the Atlanta Falcons and has also been contacted by the Miami Dolphins about their head coaching job.

"Before Rex Ryan took over full-time working with me, I was a certified bust," linebacker Terrell Suggs said. "Rex is an amazing coach."

Ryan said he appreciated the players' support.

"I think they understand the kind of person I am, that there's accountability and there's discipline," Ryan said. "They know I'm a straight shooter. They know I care about them and respect them."

The Ravens have also requested permission to interview Cleveland Browns offensive coordinator Rob Chudzinski. Meanwhile, University of Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz, a former Browns and Ravens assistant, has informed the Ravens that he's not interested in the job.

Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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