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3 Early Possibilities to Replace Fisher

Photo Credit:: Denver Post

Stan Kroenke described it as one of the hardest decisions he's ever had to make in a press release that followed the announcement Jeff Fisher would no longer be the coach of the LA Rams. The next chapter is here for the Rams as they attempt to get ready for a game against the Seahawks in just a matter of days. Rumors and names are going to be flying around until a coach is finally named.

Each name seems to bring more and more to the Rams, who finally have something appealing to offer possible hires. No, it’s not the current team on the field. The Rams are an extremely interesting proposition for a new coach or seasoned veteran. They have a solid defense and a raw quarterback who has shown brief (read: very brief) flashes of being something a little more.

The first three realistic names to pop up early were Jim Harbaugh, Kyle Shanahan, and Jon Gruden. There have been a few rumblings of Pete Carol being interested, but that seems more like a hot take than actual possibility.

Harbaugh is undoubedtly the best choice to be the next head coach, and here’s why:

He's done it before.

Harbaugh rebuilt a struggling 49ers team that strangely resembles the current Rams’ team. Both teams were built through slow improvements to the defense. Both teams have or had young quarterbacks and decent running games.

There's a challenge in it

Harbaugh would relish the challenge that coaching in the NFC West would provide. Two games against the Seahawksl. Two games against the 49ers. Then two more in against the Cardinals just for icing.

Harbaugh knows the division. He also might want to take out some frustrations on the 49ers. Payback baby.

He'd get all the praise for their success.

Besides those incentives, anyone who wins in LA will be viewed a Football God for the rest of their tenure. Save the Rams, save LA and become a hero to the masses.

Harbaugh would be the best, but if the Rams can't have him, there are other options. Mike Shanahan, or Gruden would be a great fit as well.

Shanahan, unfortunately, would be a first-year head coach, which is something the Rams don’t need right now. They are in the second largest market in the country and the lights have proved to be hot. It might not be fair to Shanahan. Luckily for him his father, Mike, might know a thing or two about building a contender. If he would be able to slide into the Rams front office the deal doesn’t look that bad.

Finally, it’s off to Mr. Monday Night.

If the Rams want to make a splash, Gruden would certainly do that for them, but he might not be the long-term answer for the Rams. Gruden’s first coaching stint with the Oakland Raiders ended when he was traded. He finished with a record of 38-26 with the Raiders. After being traded to the Bucs, Gruden picked up a Super Bowl, but finished that stint with a record of 57-55.

Overall Gruden is 95-81 as a coach. He only has three losing seasons and has reached the playoffs five times with a record of 5-4. Gruden’s final two seasons with Tampa Bay resulted in back-to-back 9-7 finishes. No, that’s not 7-9 Rams fans. Even seeing those number in reverse probably gets the blood going a little bit.

It’s going to be an interesting few weeks for the Rams as they attempt to navigate the final weeks of the season.

Without any type of high draft pick (thanks to the Goff trade) this might be the exact kind of excitement LA needs to get through the offseason.   

Brett Crossley is a Los Angeles Rams writer for Pro Football Spot. For comments, contact him at or give him a follow on twitter @BrettCrossley44


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Personally, I can't see Harbaugh leaving Michigan at this time. He's got a great gig over there right now. They were so close to making the playoff this season and I feel strongly that they will be in the mix again in 2017. Although it would be fascinating to see him get two games against the 49ers each year.

Also doubt that Gruden leaves MNF. He just really seems to enjoy his job as the commentator and I think he's gotten better at it. I know the fans in Los Angeles probably want a proven name. But it might actually serve them better to take a shot at a new and unproven guy. But obviously, we'll see. Should at least be an interesting head coaching search for the fans in Los Angeles to follow.

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