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ESPN’s Dan Graziano predicts Mike Vrabel as Seahawks’ next head coach

The ex-Titans HC isn’t even on the Seahawks’ public list of candidates but why let that stop them?

Jacksonville Jaguars v Houston Texans Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

There are currently seven head coaching positions available in the NFL:

Who each of those teams will choose as their next head coach is currently unclear, but that didn’t stop ESPN’s Dan Graziano from making some educated guesses (which may or may not have involved throwing darts at the wall to see which ones stuck).

As is often the case, the results are behind the ESPN+ paywall, but we’ll share the relevant portions with y’all here on Field Gulls.

Let’s start with the GOAT.

For those 12s who are hoping that Bill Belichick succeeds Pete Carroll in Seattle like he did in New England . . .

Graziano says, “No.” He has Darth Hoodie going to the Falcons. Or maybe the Dallas Cowboys if Jerry Jones decides to move on from Mike McCarthy.

Either way, it won’t be Seattle.

And I say, “Yay!”

Another coach that I would prefer to NOT have in Seattle is Jim Harbaugh.

I like him as a coach, but not as a human being, and he’s about the furthest thing from a Seahawk as I can imagine.

Fortunately, Harbaugh hasn’t been linked to Seattle (at least not yet) which makes sense since he doesn’t appear to fit the criteria that John Schneider has publicly shared:

  • An inherent ability to maintain the Seahawks’ positive culture
  • A willingness to report to the GM rather than the owner
  • Et cetera

Graziano thinks Harbaugh will end up in Los Angeles.

Me, I think he’ll use the Chargers (and whoever else wants to court him) to lock up another extension with the University of Michigan.

How about Ben Johnson?

The Detroit Lions’ Offensive Coordinator is a hot name this coaching cycle, and we know John Schneider has requested an interview with him.

Will Johnson land in Seattle?

Graziano says, “No.” He believes that Johnson is the primary target of the Washington Commanders and that new owner Josh Harris is determined to land him.

So where does that leave us?

Graziano has the other three non-Seahawks openings going to candidates who haven’t yet been linked to Seattle:

  • Carolina = Cincinnati Bengals OC Brian Callahan
  • Las Vegas = interim HC Antonio Pierce
  • Tennessee = Lion’s DC Aaron Glenn

Interestingly, Graziano also has the Seahawks hiring someone they haven’t yet (officially) been linked to . . .

Mike Vrabel

I know, he hasn’t even shown up on the Seahawks’ interview list yet. And sure, (Dan) Quinn has a connection to Seattle from his time as its defensive coordinator under (Pete) Carroll. The Vrabel thing is a bit of a hunch, though I do have several sources who share the same hunch and the idea that he could be a sneaky late entry into this pool.

It’s almost certainly a coincidence that the Carroll news broke the day after the news that the Titans had fired Vrabel. But it’s also possible that the opportunity the current high-level candidate list offers is part of the reason Seattle decided now was the time to make a change.

Personally, this seems like a safe choice and it would not surprise me at all if this was the direction that John Schneider went.

I’m hoping for something more . . . “inspired”, but there are certainly worse choices that Schneider could make (see Belichick, Bill and/or Harbaugh, Jim).

Who knows though, maybe Vrabel will bring Derrick Henry with him and Geno Smith will hand Henry the ball at the 1.

Go Hawks!