Former NFL player and head coach and current ESPN NFL analyst Herm Edwards has not coached a game since his final game with the Kansas City Chiefs in 2008. Could he really be back on the sidelines a decade later?
Reports coming out of Arizona have thrown Edwards into the rumor mill as a possibility to fill the vacancy at Arizona State, which is rather interesting, to say the least. If nothing else, it is certainly an out-of-the-box idea but one that begs some further examination.
Edwards worked in the NFL as a scout or coach from 1990 through 2008 with positions with the Chiefs in two stints, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and New York Jets. The San Diego State alum started his coaching career as a defensive backs coach at San Jose State from 1987 through 1989 before picking up a scouting job with the Chiefs. Edwards has no ties to Arizona State, but Arizona State athletic director Ray Anderson has previous experience in NFL circles as an executive, so his familiarity with Edwards may be a factor. Anderson has also suggested he would ideally like to hire a coach with previous head coaching experience, and Edwards obviously checks that box off. Being given a helping hand in the job search from Edwards’ friend, Tony Dungy, could also be an influential factor in the early stages of Arizona State’s job search as well.
But how much of this is really going to gain any traction? That remains unknown. It could just end up being a courtesy call and a power play to draw attention to the Arizona State job. Having your vacancy connected to a coach and football personality that has a certain level of respect helps sell the idea of the job being an attractive one. But the Arizona State job is decent enough as it is with or without having Edwards mentioned as a possibility.
In the long run, Edwards at Arizona State would be a difficult hire to sell to the fans. Edwards could certainly be good to motivate college kids, but he also could be a coach that gets burned out rather quickly before Arizona State is back in the saddle on the coaching carousel once again.
UPDATE 6:35 PM E.T.: Adam Schefter of ESPN reports Edwards will interview with Arizona State this weekend.