Report: Redskins Interested in Pursuing Mike Tomlin as Team's New Head Coach

Washington will reportedly not conduct a search for a permanent head coach until after the season.
Publish date:

The rumors started early about several candidates, but this one doesn't appear to be losing steam. Jason LaConfora of CBS Sports reported early Sunday the Washington Redskins have definitely honed in on current Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin as the man they want to guide the next chapter of the franchise.

That report has now been backed up by NBC Sports Washington's JP Finlay, giving it multiple legs to stand on.

Snyder, who has long been a fan of Tomlin, has gotten to know the Super Bowl-winning coach more personally over the years, at league meetings and through several mutual friends and peers, and would be willing to give Tomlin a top-of-the-market salary and full authority over the organization, the sources said. He views Tomlin as the kind of coach, leader and face-of-the-franchise Washington sorely lacks -- the perfect point person with the media and sponsors and to help efforts to get a stadium built in downtown Washington, DC.

The major stumbling block, of course, is that Tomlin is currently under contract with the Steelers, and is signed through the 2021 season after signing an extension this past summer. Any specific overtures to the Steelers head man will be considered tampering and would cost Washington more than whatever trade compensation they hope to work out with Pittsburgh.

ESPN's Adam Schefter confirmed the rumor, but his sources called it far-fetched.

"Neither of which is going to happen," one source close to the situation told ESPN.

"I don't see Mike going to Washington," the source continued. "That is so far-fetched. It's so far out there. It would have to be a deal that the league never has seen before and would change the way business is done in football, and I don't see that happening."

Both organizations are struggling to start the 2019 season. The Redskins fired head coach Jay Gruden this past week after starting 0-5. Bill Callahan was promoted from offensive line coach to interim head coach to finish out the season.

Pittsburgh is 1-4 after losing starting quarterback Ben Roesthlisberger. The club has jettisoned two prime offensive talents in recent years, losing Le'Veon Bell to free agency after a year-plus long holdout and trading WR Antonio Brown to the Oakland Raiders in the offseason.

Washington has not had a winning head coach under Snyder's ownership, the closest coming when Marty Schottenheimer finished 8-8, but was let go as the team wanted to pursue Steve Spurrier from the collegiate ranks.

Tomlin has been the Steelers coach since 2001, when he took the reigns from Bill Cowher. He's just the third head coach in Steelers history and has compiled a career record of 126-70-1. He has two AFC championships and a Super Bowl victory coming after the 2008 season.

Tomlin's child is currently attending the University of Maryland, just a 10-minute drive from FedEx Field in Landover where Washington plays their home games.