Jay Gruden is an interesting candidate for an NFL head coaching position. He has a background that includes time in the United Football League and arena football.
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
The day after the Bengals season ended, Gruden confirmed to Cincinnati reporters that he’s been contacted by the Washington Redskins, Tennessee Titans and Minnesota Vikings about their head coaching vacancies and plans, at least initially, to interview with all three.
Gruden said he wasn’t sure about the Detroit Lions vacancy, another to which he’s been linked by multiple reports. He also interviewed last offseason for the Arizona Cardinals, Philadelphia Eagles and San Diego Chargers head-coaching vacancies.
"Every interview process I went on last year was different and they all are a bit intimidating," Gruden said. "But you just have to have confident in who you are. My whole thing is I’m always going to be myself. I’m never going to try to be somebody else or pretend to be something I’m not. And if that appeals to them, then great. And if not, I’m quite happy where I’m at — although I’m sure a lot of people would like me to leave."
Gruden, 46, has been the Bengals offensive coordinator the past three seasons, all of which have ended in first-round playoff losses. He has head coaching experience in the Arena League and the UFL; he was the head coach and general manager of the Florida Tuskers in the UFL in 2010 before joining the Bengals.
His initial NFL coaching experience came in 2002 under his brother, Jon, with the Tampa Bay Bucs. Jay served as an offensive assistant with the Bucs during the fall and played quarterback for the Arena League’s Orlando Predators in the spring.