The Titans have made it official, putting out a press release Monday night to announce the hiring of Ken Whisenhunt as their next head coach.
But that news came the same day they interviewed someone else one last time.
According to Jim Wyatt of the Tennesseean, the Titans held a second interview with Bengals defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer Monday morning.
That makes it seem clear that Zimmer was the runner-up, as other candidates such as Jim Caldwell haven’t been reported as having another round of interviews. The Vikings have also expressed interest in Zimmer.
But even though Zimmer is well thought of in league circles, they were clearly delighted to land Whisenhunt.
“This is a big day for this franchise,” Titans President/CEO Tommy Smith said in a release. “Ken is a well-respected coach in this league and I am looking forward to seeing his vision become reality for this team. He has a history of building successful offenses and took Arizona to a Super Bowl as a head coach. We all share a common goal for this team and that is to build a consistent winner. I want to thank [General Manager] Ruston [Webster] for his hard work in the process and the quality candidates that he brought in for interviews.”
While the late interview with a defensive guy is interesting, Webster pointed to Whisenhunt’s track record with quarterbacks.
“I have a lot of respect for Ken as a coach and as an offensive mind,” Webster said. “The traits that stand out to me when identifying him as our next coach – he is intelligent, has a track record with quality offenses and head coaching success. I really enjoyed our meeting on Friday night in San Diego and we share similar philosophies about the game. Additionally, we have several mutual colleagues that have spoken highly to me about Ken both as a coach and as a person. I am excited about Ken joining us and the future of the Titans.”
Apparently, after a late look at Zimmer, their choice became clear.