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Jim Harbaugh a "stealth" candidate for Bills, Raiders jobs

There has been some speculation that the Buffalo Bills (who don’t currently have a head coach) and the Oakland Raiders (who currently do) could be interested in hiring Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh.

A league source tells us that it’s more than speculation; the brother of Ravens coach John Harbaugh is, we’re told, a “stealth” candidate for both jobs.

Secrecy is critical (oops) because Jim Harbaugh currently is in the midst of recruiting season.  If Harbaugh acknowledges that he’s a candidate for any job other than the one he has, his recruits will scatter like members of the Cardinal band in the end zone of a game that isn’t yet over.

For any college coach plotting a move, the news needs to come swiftly or not at all, and Harbaugh will have to use the “I’m not going to be the Alabama coach” routine until, you know, he ultimately becomes the Alabama coach.

(Then again, there’s a chance that Jim Harbaugh is already the Baltimore coach.)

In NFL coaching circles, neither the Bills job nor the Raiders job is regarded as incredibly attractive.  But the reality is that there are only 32 jobs in NFL head-coaching circles, and Jim Harbaugh simply doesn’t strike us as a guy who is destined to spend his career as a college head coach.  With his brother making it to the playoffs twice in his first two seasons with the Ravens, the interest in the Harbaugh who was a pretty good pro quarterback only will increase.

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26 Responses to “Jim Harbaugh a "stealth" candidate for Bills, Raiders jobs”
  1. Crushitlong says: Jan 7, 2010 3:08 PM

    Gee I thought he was a Raven’s assistant already too. Busy guy

  2. schism says: Jan 7, 2010 3:08 PM

    The thing that bothers me, is both the bills and the raiders are two teams that are capable of being contenders, with old out of touch owners holding them back, so sad.

  3. Chapnasty2 says: Jan 7, 2010 3:10 PM

    I love Harbaugh. Grew up watching him as a kid when players played with class and respect. He has done well at Stanford and deserves his shot but no one in their right mind would go to the Raiders after what Davis did to Kiffin.

  4. Gonzaga27 says: Jan 7, 2010 3:12 PM

    I would rather him than Cowher in Buffalo… He might not have the mediocre credentials like Cowher but he sure looks good in red..

  5. Buffalo Hogan says: Jan 7, 2010 3:13 PM

    Where did this word “stealth’ comes from?
    What does that mean? Does stealth imply that the candidate is embarrased to publicly be connected with said team in question?
    And on a related note, when did the Bills fall to the Raiders level.

  6. Poo Flinging Monkey says: Jan 7, 2010 3:16 PM

    I heard that the Raiders are considering Jeff George for their next head coach?

  7. 1nationraidernation says: Jan 7, 2010 3:28 PM

    can’t be any worse then Tom Cable, and would be a better play caller. I think this makes more sense then Leach, since Stanford played a more pro style offense.
    I may be alone, but I would much rather see Cable go as the head coach, then J-Russ go. I would make my decision on J-russ after camp, and pre season games.
    Draft some o-line men this year!

  8. mwcarolina says: Jan 7, 2010 3:32 PM

    Jim Harbaugh would be a good one in Buffalo, i can’t see him wanting to go to Oakland, Oakland could be in for Mike Leach too if they fire Cable, but i think he should get another chance and rid themselves of that waste of talent Russell.

  9. AFWiredawg says: Jan 7, 2010 3:33 PM

    Buffalo Hogan,
    Newsflash….the Bills were in the basement long before the Raiders joined the club……go ahead and keep telling yourself otherwise and leave the ESPN Koolaid alone.
    Haters…GFY

  10. frox says: Jan 7, 2010 3:35 PM

    My guess is he stays where he is and waits for Florio’s boy Rich Rod to get canned at Michigan and then steps in, as a true “Michigan Man”, to pick up the pieces.

  11. raiders177 says: Jan 7, 2010 3:36 PM

    Damnit, the Raiders are gonna hire Harbaugh and then draft Gerhardt.

  12. shake&bake says: Jan 7, 2010 3:36 PM

    Actually Harbough was an assistant coach with the Raiders before he went to Stanford. Anf Jim has always said he really like Al Davis and respects and i guess they talk to each other quite a bit. And i klnow Al interviewed him a couple times so Jim going to the Raiders is a very possible thing.

  13. Asswipe Johnson (Pronounced Az-Wee-Pay) says: Jan 7, 2010 3:39 PM

    The guy I would throw out there as one who could shock a few people and end up as a new head coach this off season would be the Miami Dolphins Todd Bowles…

  14. bornman3 says: Jan 7, 2010 3:47 PM

    How in the world could Jim Harbaugh be dumb enough to even think about joining the Raiders? I’m not buying that he is that stupid.
    The Raiders will not find anyone that would be able to beat the Steelers, Eagles, Bengals and Broncos like Cable did anyway. He got a ton out of that team, with unknowns at the skill postions.
    Cable is not a super star coach, but he is slow enough to work for Al Davis and crazy enough to be a Raider.

  15. bete rouge says: Jan 7, 2010 4:34 PM

    Gawd I get sick of reading this kind of lazy story. Proverbial broken watch being right twice a day.
    Harbaugh a “hot” name? Then just follow the recipe:
    SOURCE ( “Sources say” [that’s always a good one] )WHO (” Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh”) WHAT (” is a candidate for the [insert team name here] head coaching job”
    There! I’m an NFL football reporter, too! If I want to be a really cool football reporter, I jazz it up by writing stuff like “a STEALTH candidate” as if it’s some big secret and I am an insider who knows all this cool insider stuff.

  16. DeionBitesOnDoubleMoves says: Jan 7, 2010 4:35 PM

    I think Harbaugh would be a great hire for the Raiders. He’s a former Raider assistant and one of those gritty-type QBs during his playing days that could maybe spark some improvement in Russell. Also, you have to believe Darth Al is seeing what Jim’s bro has been doing in Baltimore and maybe thinks it could translate in Oaktown. I think it’s worth pursuing but there’s really nothing wrong with keeping Cable as the coach, IMO. Maybe Harbaugh becomes a coordinator and Cable stays as coach, or vice versa?

  17. shawnstreet says: Jan 7, 2010 4:46 PM

    I always liked Harbaugh. Therefore I hope he stays put and does not become the next former head coach of the Oakland Raiders.

  18. seanx says: Jan 7, 2010 5:05 PM

    Like said above, Harbaugh will wait out this upcoming season at Stanford before getting the Michigan job. The he will live happily ever after.

  19. tomcous says: Jan 7, 2010 5:35 PM

    Jim Harbaugh has zero chance of having a future with the Buffalo Bills … if you understand that former players have “inside” communication & if you have any inclination as to the so rumored “succession plan being in place” then you know Jim Harbaugh would not last 15 minutes in an interview room with the Buffalo Bills organization!!!
    http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-67853231.html

  20. HarrisonHits says: Jan 7, 2010 5:35 PM

    Let’s see, stay in sunny, warm Stanford where I’m king of the world working with nice easy to manage college players, or go to the frozen hell of Buffalo taking a hellish job working for a horrendous owner, or go up to Oakland and take a hellish job working for a horrendous owner.
    Not much of a decision there as far as I can see.

  21. Joe in Toronto, Canada says: Jan 7, 2010 5:49 PM

    Chapnasty2 says: January 7, 2010 3:10 PM
    I love Harbaugh. Grew up watching him as a kid when players played with class and respect. He has done well at Stanford and deserves his shot but no one in their right mind would go to the Raiders after what Davis did to Kiffin.
    ==========================================
    What Davis did to Kiffin?
    What about what Kiffin did to the Raiders, Chapnasty?
    Kiffin literally threw 2 games while HC of the Raiders, he THREW them. Screw Kiffin, the guy is a snake in the grass.

  22. piccolo says: Jan 7, 2010 5:50 PM

    I can’t see Jim Harbaugh on the east coast so forget the Bills. Heard a good interview with him before he pants’d Weis and ND. He sounded very, very happy working close to his family in CA.
    That said, I would lose a lot of respect for him (or any other legitimate prospective coach) to take a job with that old crusty tool Al Davis. Harbaugh is smart guy and not that desperate. I agree MI would be a good fit. Outside of that I can’t see him want to work for any NFL team except on the west coast. Seattle is the only current option if Mora gets dumped. But no way with the Bills. Not going to happen.
    I like his fire. He’ll be a good coach where ever he goes. Bears could use him as a OC but that’s wishful thinking and not going to happen either :( That would be a trade down …

  23. AbeFreshly says: Jan 7, 2010 11:15 PM

    “…his recruits will scatter like members of the Cardinal band in the end zone of a game that isn’t yet over…”.
    I gotta hand it to you, Florio. You crack me up. lol.

  24. Bigike55 says: Jan 8, 2010 1:34 PM

    funny i was talking to my buddy and we saw him on the sideline of the ravens @ raiders game and i said i bet him and al have already had a meeting to be the next coach of the raiders…..

  25. tango says: Jan 8, 2010 2:55 PM

    Harbaugh will never take the Raider head coach job. Stanford is just across the bay and Harbaugh see the mess and is way to smart to get involved with a jerk like Al Davis

  26. ChrisJohnsonEnglishProfessor says: Jan 8, 2010 9:53 PM

    tango you should have at least the slightest knowledge of the situation before commenting. harbaugh has already worked for the Raiders. It doesn’t matter if he worked in china. he still would be well aware of it being that he is a former employee, and worked there as early as right before his stanford job. He knows the Raiders and likes then Raiders. Al will screw this up, but please have some knowledge before you immeadiately jump to typical Raider hating

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