The NFL has made a sudden rule change which allows teams to begin interviewing candidates for head coaching jobs who are employed by other teams starting today.
The new rule allows virtual interviews during the regular season of up to two hours, but applies only to head coaching vacancies. There are restrictions for other coaching positions and there are no in-person interviews permitted while the hiring club or candidate’s club is still playing.
Teams can deny the interview requests.
Previously teams needed to wait until the end of the regular season to interview candidates employed by other teams although they could interview college coaches and candidates who weren’t employed.
It isn’t clear how much of an impact this will actually have. There are stories of interviews understandably lasting days because of how important a head coaching hire is. It is difficult to envision somebody being offered a job just based on a two hour virtual interview.
Still this is a head start for teams that fired their coach in season and have begun their coaching search.
On its merits the rule seems unfair to me. There are teams that won’t know whether they are making a coaching change until the end of the season for legitimate reasons. They will now be put at a disadvantage.
Of course the Jets are not among these teams. They are putting themselves at a disadvantage just by being dumb and waiting until the end of the season to fire Adam Gase.