JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA – NOVEMBER 19: Head coach Mike Vrabel of the Tennessee Titans looks on in the first quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Stadium on November 19, 2023 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Courtney Culbreath/Getty Images)
Mike Vrabel and Bill Belichick headlined a star-studded coaching market during the most recent cycle, yet they are both heading into the 2024 NFL season without a job.
Vrabel’s departure from Tennessee was shocking, given what he managed there, so it was assumed that he would get another job within days. However, the cycle is over and he hasn’t been hired.
The Athletic’s Dianna Russini has suggested that the 48-year-old missed out on a new job for the most astonishing reason: his stature. Speaking on The Athletic Football Show this week, the former ESPN reporter claimed to have spoken to a general manager at the Senior Bowl who told her Vrabel’s build likely played a role in his failure to land another NFL gig.
“I don’t think there was a fit for him,” she explained. “I don’t think he sat in front of any owner who thought that his style was going to work for what they were looking for.
“I had a GM at the Senior Bowl who mentioned to me Vrabel’s physical build,” Russini recalled. “That he’s a very large human being and can be very intimidating to people in an organization that are going to be part of these decisions. And that is a factor.”
Russini was surprised at the fact that the Washington Commanders didn’t even give Vrabel an interview before hiring Dan Quinn, also pointing out that, while there is interest around the NFL in bringing him in as a defensive coordinator, he might not be keen on such a post after his success as a head coach.
It will be interesting to see whether teams pass up on Vrabel again next year.