Once the 2012 NFL regular season was officially over with the NFL playoffs set, head coaches around the league began to get fired left and right. Almost a third of the teams in the NFL parted ways with their head coaches and began the search for new leaders on the sidelines to call the shots.
Of the jobs made available, the Chicago Bears and Philadelphia Eagles vacancies followed by the San Diego Chargers were arguably the most appealing. The Eagles immediate targeted Chip Kelly of Oregon and eventually convinced him to take the job while the Bears had no clear cut favorite and decided to go with the controversial choice of Marc Trestman of the CFL.
Before the Eagles were finally able to lock up Kelly, the rumors started to circulate of Jon Gruden’s interest in the job. Gruden has been a popular name in terms of considering returning to coaching in the NFL, but never seems to go through with it or even go as far as sitting down for an interview.
Eagles owner Jeffrey Lurie talked about Gruden coaching in the NFL next season via Michael David Smith of Pro Football Talk:
In fact, Lurie said today that when he reached out to Gruden, Gruden told him in no uncertain terms that he will remain ESPN’s Monday Night Football color commentator in 2013 and will not be a head coach.
“Jon made it clear that he was not coming back to the NFL this year,” Lurie said.
With all the high-profile head coaching jobs off the table for the time being, Gruden staying with ESPN for the 2013 NFL season makes perfect sense. Gruden appears to be reluctant to returning to coaching in the NFL until the right opportunity presents itself with the right team.
The Eagles were thought to be the perfect opportunity for Gruden, but apparently the temptation wasn’t strong enough to go after it.