Bills to interview both Super Bowl defensive coordinators
Bills president and general manager Tom Donahoe was in Baltimore on Monday to interview Marvin Lewis, defensive coordinator of the Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens. Donahoe was then scheduled to meet with New York Giants defensive coordinator John Fox on Tuesday.
Neither Lewis nor Fox, whose teams met in Sunday's game, were allowed to pursue other job opportunities until their respective seasons were completed.
Donahoe has already interviewed Tennessee Titans defensive coordinator Gregg Williams and Ted Cottrell, Buffalo's defensive coordinator, who has since joined the New York Jets. The Bills, who dismissed Wade Phillips earlier this month, now appear to be the only NFL team in need of a head coach after the Browns announced on Monday that they were prepared to hire University of Miami coach Butch Davis.
Lewis and Fox -- both pursued by the Browns -- are regarded the front-runners for the Bills job because of their ongoing successes and experience in Pittsburgh while Donahoe served as the Steelers' director of football operations.
Fox called it "discouraging" that he didn't get an opportunity to interview with the Browns.
"The rules do penalize guys that make it to the Super Bowl," said Fox. "It's unfortunate for guys like Marvin and I that we have to wait to this point. It's part of the process and you do the best you can."
He said he's confident he'll get a fair shot for the Bills job.
"I know how Tom operates. I think he'll go through the process and make a decision," Fox said.
Curiously, Fox once again finds himself going up against Lewis, whom he considers a good friend.
"Obviously, it's a competitive league in more ways than one," Fox said, laughing.
This season, Lewis oversaw a Ravens defense regarded as one of the NFL's best ever. Along with allowing the fewest points in a 16-game NFL season, Baltimore's defense yielded just 16 points through the playoffs, holding the Giants to no points (New York's touchdown came on a kickoff return) and a mere 149 total net yards offense in Sunday's game.
Under Fox, the Giants defense finished fifth in the NFL in fewest yards allowed, and was ranked second overall against the run.
Fox said it won't be difficult to prepare for his interview, even though it comes two days after losing in the Super Bowl, something which he referred to as "a bitter pill."
"This is something I've prepared my whole career for," Fox said of the chance of being a head coach.