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Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Garrett to the Lions?

By Dan Graziano
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's Matt Mosley

In the wake of the most disappointing season in Cowboys history, it's interesting that another team would request to talk to offensive coordinator Jason Garrett about a head-coaching opportunity. Garrett was a hot commodity after the Cowboys went 13-3 last season, and he interviewed with the Ravens and Falcons. Garrett chose not to accept the Ravens' offer when Cowboys owner Jerry Jones gave him a huge raise to $3 million a year.

There is nothing in Garrett's contract to prevent him from becoming a head coach elsewhere, but he was considered the head-coach-in-waiting in Dallas. Following the collapse of the Cowboys and the failure of the offense to sustain any type of consistency, something tells me that Jones won't fight as hard to keep Garrett this time around.

If Garrett receives an offer from the Lions, he should take it. He's seen how quickly the window can close in this business and Detroit would offer an opportunity to help turn an organization around. The job's not as bad as it looks -- especially in light of what Mike Smith and Tony Sparano accomplished this past season. The Lions would be gambling on the Garrett of 2007 to make a return. But remember, the Garrett of '07 had Sparano by his side. We all underestimated how important Sparano was to the entire operation in Dallas.

The Lions should learn from the hires that Atlanta, Baltimore and Miami made. Smith wasn't a household name in the league, but he's turned out to be the perfect guy for the Falcons. This franchise is in desperate need of a fresh voice. I'd be lining up an interview with Jim Schwartz, defensive coordinator of the Tennessee Titans. He's the guy the 49ers should've hired when they chose Mike Nolan a few years ago. Schwartz is young, innovative and he's going to make an excellent head coach. Here's a list of candidates the Detroit Free Press put together.