Don’t expect Nix to wait on Cowher for long

Posted on January 4, 2010 by Patrick Moran

You don’t have to be a football connoisseur to figure out what head coach would make the biggest impact in Buffalo.  Bill Cowher has made no secret to his circle of friends he’d like to coach again in 2010 and with a vacancy available in Orchard Park; the Buffalo Bills are always a possibility.

Recent reports, including those by ESPN and right here have said the organization has already met and Cowher came away impressed. The problem with Cowher or any big ticket coach is they’re unlikely to jump on a Buffalo offer.  Like it or not, Cowher or anyone else with multiple options is going to explore all of them before making a decision.

Buddy Nix may not be willing to wait for long.

The new Bills general manager, speaking with ABC’s Buffalo affiliate Jeff Russo, didn’t sound like a guy willing to sit on the sidelines to see if Cowher will become the Bills next head coach.

“Everybody has got those guys on their list,” Nix told Russo in direct reference to Cowher.  “You want to be realistic.  But again, I think you can bring that to a head quick rather than getting strung out. I think you go after, this is our offer, Are you interested? If you are let’s move on if you’re not let us know about it. I think that’s the kind of approach we ought to take.”

It’s likely if Cowher indeed returns to coaching he’ll be patient with his decision.  He’s certain to monitor the Carolina situation, where John Fox would be a lame duck coach without an extension. Despite reports that Fox will definitely be back, it’s possible Fox could negotiate a buy-out and become a free agent of his own.

Tampa Bay could also be a destination, though reports say that first-year coach Raheem Morris and his staff will be back.

If those two jobs remained closed, Buffalo could be Cowher’s best and perhaps only option for 2010.  Peter King confirmed this.  Of course, Cowher could simply elect to return to the CBS broadcast booth for another season and postpone his return to 2011.

Is Nix willing to wait him out?

Nix told Russo he’s already compiled a list of coaching candidates he’d like to interview and in the coming days if not sooner he’ll sit down with Ralph Wilson and together they’ll figure out a priority order.

“We’ve started on whittling the list down and we’ll start interviewing those guys,” Nix said.  “We’ll come up with our two best candidates, three at the most, take them to Mr. Wilson and we’ll have a consensus and come out of there with one.”

Nix was also asked about the status of Vice President of College Scouting Tom Modrak and Vice President of Player Personnel John Guy.  Both have been with the team since 2001 and neither is popular with a depressed and angry fan base.

Nix’s keenly aware fans want to see some heads roll for the decade-long playoff drought, but was non-committal about the future of anyone in the front office.

“I don’t want to be a hatchet guy,” Nix said.  “I know by them press people if you come in and get rid of a lot of people. All of us, because we’re frustrated by losing, I think you get to wanting to see somebody pay for it.”

“I’m suffering; let’s get this guy out of there. Well, I’m going to take my time. I’m going to evaluate everything in every department and then I’m going to decide if I can tweak it and get it right or if you have to make a change.  I’m not afraid of hard decisions, I’ve made them all my life and when I’m convinced, I’ll make them again.”

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