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Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Cunningham's departure a bad sign for Edwards

By Bill Williamson
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Bill Williamson

If Herm Edwards is going to be the Kansas City Chiefs' coach in 2009, is he going to have any assistants remaining?

The hiring of Gunther Cunningham in Detroit as defensive coordinator could be a tell-tale sign that Edwards' time in Kansas City is coming to an end. Cunningham was a right-hand man to Edwards and the two kept in close contact since the season ended.

Also, Cunningham met with new Kansas City general manager Scott Pioli last week. So his decision to make a lateral move with the 0-16 Lions is surely a sign that he didn't feel confident in his current situation.

Cunningham is the third Kansas City assistant to take the job elsewhere. A fourth, offensive coordinator Chan Gailey, is a candidate for the same job in Tampa Bay.

It's been 24 days since the season ended and eight days since Pioli took over, and Edwards remains in limbo. It would be a surprise at this point if Edwards is kept because there would be so many changes that would be needed anyway.

There has been league-wide speculation that Pioli may be waiting to hire Arizona offensive coordinator Todd Haley, who can't do anything until after the Super Bowl on Feb. 1. Haley's mentor is Bill Parcells, who is Pioli's father-in-law.