The Washington Redskins already have begun the process of interviewing candidates for their potential head-coaching vacancy, according to league sources, with secondary coach Jerry Gray recently spending a Tuesday at team owner Daniel Snyder's house talking about the position.
Gray's candidancy would satisfy the requirements of the Rooney Rule, which mandates that NFL teams interview at least one minority candidate for coaching and general manager positions. The Redskins might have conducted other interviews with in-house candidates as well.
The Redskins' interest in major organizational changes is no secret (Bruce Allen replaced Vinny Cerrato as the top of football operations Thursday), and numerous coaches and executives expect Mike Shanahan to take over for Jim Zorn as head coach shortly after the season ends. Shanahan has been working out of an office in Denver, reviewing film and contacting potential staff members for weeks, according to sources, and Snyder is focused on the former Broncos coach taking the reins in Washington.
Allen and Shanahan also have been in tandem. Shanahan told the Buffalo Bills that he wanted Allen to be a part of his operation when he interviewed with the team several weeks ago, according to league sources.
Shanahan could look to hire several members of the Houston Texans' staff should coach Gary Kubiak be let go, with Shanahan's son, Kyle, among those targeted. Bob Slowik, Shanahan's former coordinator in Denver, is virtually certain to have a role on defense, according to league sources, and Jim and Jeff Goodman, who worked on personnel with the Broncos, remain closely aligned with the coach as well.
There is a sense among some in the league that perhaps Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones could make a run at Shanahan should his team collapse down the stretch as in years past, However, league sources say Snyder already has committed significant time and resources in his pursuit of Shanahan, and he is by far the primary target for that eventual opening.