Cincinnati Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson is a man in demand after he held interviews with the Cleveland Browns and San Francisco 49ers over the weekend.
The NFL Network reported that Jackson, 50, met with the 49ers for five hours on Sunday regarding their head coaching vacancy and before that Jackson had held a lengthy meeting with the Browns.
It is understood that both meetings went well, but neither team has made the respected Jackson an offer yet, but his time with Oakland when he went 8-8 in 2011 makes him a man high up the Browns’ wish list.
AFC North’s Browns also met with Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott over the weekend. McDermott’s defenses have finished in the top 10 in each of the past four seasons.
The Browns are though believed to be keen on Jackson’s AFC North familiarity but they will have to move quickly and even then they might not be able to attract Jackson, who is also a target for the New York Giants.
The Giants are set to request permission to speak to Jackson as they look to replace dual Super Bowl winner Tom Coughlin who recently stepped down after the Giants finished their season with a disappointing 6-10 record.
Meanwhile, San Francisco are desperate to replace first-year coach Jim Tomsula quickly, but CEO Jed York is well aware of the competitive nature of this offseason as several teams look for new coaches.
“I believe in winning championships. I realize that my expectations seem unachievable,” York said. “You can trust me that we are going to do everything that we can to get this team back where it belongs.”
The 49ers have interviewed Buccaneers offensive coordinator Dirk Koetter, as well as fired Eagles coach Chip Kelly last Thursday, but Jackson’s offensive mind could be key for York and general manager Trent Baalke.
Tomsula was promoted from defensive line coach last January – a decision that Baalke admitted last week was a mistake and Jackson’s wide-ranging coaching experience is seen as a better fit for the 49ers.
“We have a plan in place. We know the directions we’re going,” Baalke said. “We’ve just got to make it fit within the schedules that are out there that these men are tied to.