The Tennessee Titans wrapped up their coaching search by hiring San Diego offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt as their new head coach and 17th in franchise history.
Whisenhunt, 51, will be introduced at a news conference today.
The Titans flew to San Diego on Friday and interviewed Whisenhunt, who started his coaching career in Nashville at Vanderbilt. He was the fourth person interviewed by the Titans, who fired Mike Munchak on Jan. 4.
But the Titans had competition for Whisenhunt, who also interviewed with Detroit and Cleveland last week. The Tennessean newspaper reported the Titans interviewed Cincinnati defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer for a second time Monday in Houston before hiring Whisenhunt.
Whisenhunt spent six years coaching Arizona and took the Cardinals to their lone Super Bowl in 2009. He was fired Dec. 31, 2012, with a record of 45-51 in the regular season and 4-2 in the playoffs.
He interviewed with Cleveland twice last year before being hired as offensive coordinator in San Diego, where he helped Philip Rivers and the Chargers to the playoffs.
Broncos’ Harris has torn ACL
Denver Broncos cornerback Chris Harris Jr. is out for the rest of the playoffs after an MRI exam Monday revealed a torn ACL in his left knee.
Harris was injured in the third quarter of Denver’s 24-17 win over San Diego in the AFC Divisional round Sunday.
With Harris out, Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers brought San Diego back from a 17-0 deficit largely by targeting his rusty replacement, Quentin Jammer.
Denver coach John Fox wouldn’t say if Jammer will start against New England in the AFC championship.
Vikings eye Zimmer
The Minnesota Vikings have moved into the home stretch of their search for a head coach and Cincinnati defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer has emerged as a favorite.
John Wooten, the executive director of the Fritz Pollard Alliance, said that Vikings general manager Rick Spielman told him last week the team’s plan was to contact finalists for the job by today. According to an NFL Network report on Saturday, Zimmer was scheduled to travel to Minnesota on Monday and meet with Vikings officials for a second interview today.
The alliance is designed to promote candidate development for coaching, front office and scouting jobs in the NFL. One of Wooten’s prodigies is Arizona defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, another strong candidate for the Minnesota position.
A court hearing today in St. Louis will address a claim by the NFL Players Association that the league colluded to set a secret salary cap in 2010. The union alleged owners used a covert cap to hold down salaries in the uncapped 2010 season. The players sought at least $4 billion in damages. … Colts coach Chuck Pagano said he and his staff were chosen to coach one of the Pro Bowl teams. The coaches are leaving for Hawaii next week.