Most guys with 15 years of head-coaching experience who have been out of the game nine years are well past the point of getting back into the NFL.
But CBS analyst Bill Cowher said even though he’s had many chances to, he’s perfectly comfortable working in television now.
“I’ve been blessed to have had opportunities to come back pretty much every year, but I really, really love working at CBS,” Cowher told Bob Glauber of Newsday. “It starts at the top with Les Moonves and Sean McManus. I’ve been here for nine years. This is like a family. It reminds me a lot of the Pittsburgh Steelers, how that was run. I had the best job in football. I wanted to move on.”
Cowher retired from the Steelers the year after winning a Super Bowl, leaving with a 161-99-1 record. With that resume, and the fact he’s still just 58 (four years younger than reigning coach of the year Bruce Arians), it’s reasonable to think he might want to give it another shot and that someone would give him one.
But Cowher found something out when he left the NFL, that there’s something to be said for getting off the treadmill and enjoying life.
“Fifteen years, I was 49 years old, and it was time,” Cowher said. “I’m still part of the game, but I also love the freedom it gives me in the offseason, to be able to travel and do things I never did before as a head coach. I don’t have the [scouting] combine, I don’t have the draft, I don’t have OTAs, I don’t have training camp. I start up next month.
“In the meantime, I’ve been able to spend a lot of time with my children, a lot of time personally traveling and it’s a great lifestyle that I wouldn’t have if I was coaching.”
While the pull of the game is strong, Cowher seems to be learning — like Jon Gruden — that there are other ways to make a living in the NFL without the constant stress of coaching a team, and that might not be the worst way to live.