With Black Monday upon us, one of the more popular names on the coaching free agent market has surfaced again: ESPN analyst Jon Gruden, who will reportedly be willing to interview with teams for their head coaching jobs now that the season has finished according to CBS.
Gruden has been tied to a number of jobs over the last month in both the college and pro ranks, ranging from the University of Tennessee, to the Oakland Raiders (Gruden's old job), to seemingly every other potentially open position imaginable. But with all of the college jobs drying up (barring a coach leaving for a position in the NFL), Gruden's only recourse is the NFL, which is going to have a lot of openings in the next couple of days.
Gruden's discussions with teams are a staunch about-face from his public comments about being happy with ESPN for the long haul. Gruden signed a five-year contract extension with ESPN that began in September, and at the time, everyone seemed a little shocked that Gruden would seemingly take a step back from the endless coaching rumors related to him. Of course, before the extension even went into effect, Gruden mentioned that he'd return to coaching for the right opportunity. Could the Eagles, Chargers, or one of the host of other attractive teams in the market for a new coach be one of those right opportunities for Gruden? We'll see, but I think it's now a matter of when and not if this guy leaves the Monday Night Football booth.