Garrett is in Baltimore tonight…

January 15, 2008 | Nestor Aparicio

WNST has learned that potential future Ravens head coach Jason Garrett is in Baltimore tonight, along with his wife Brill.

It is NOT at all unusual for the candidate to bring his wife along for a final interview and potential signing. Brian Billick brought his wife Kim for his first visit, and dined at a downtown steak house.

The next morning, almost nine years ago to the day, Art and David Modell had hired the only coach that would bring their franchise a Super Bowl title.

So, is it a done deal? Not JUST yet…but they’re doing the mating dance that usually indicates that Garrett will be the Ravens next head coach.

Do the math: the Ravens went four days without activity and the instant Garrett ‘s team was eliminated he’s on a plane for Baltimore. It sure doesn’t appear as though the Ravens are waiting on Marty Schottenheimer, as some reports indicated today.

Keep in mind, all reports indicate that Atlanta is next on the Garrett East Coast Family Tour. In NFL circles, this is usually the deal:

The first choice gets the first stop with the bargaining chip being simple: “Sign me or I’ll get on the plane to Atlanta.” It’s a fantastic bargaining chip for Garrett and and EXTRA incentive to see if the Ravens are “kicking tires” or serious about signing a coach.

At the very least, Bisciotti has a limited-time “exclusive negotating rights” while he’s in the 410 area code.

(Anecdotally, in 1999, Billick was being wooed to Cleveland but instead boarded a plane to Baltimore, eschewing Cleveland and hours later the Browns “leaked” that they’d be hiring Chris Palmer. Once Atlanta hears that he’s in Baltimore, Arthur Blank might rescind the offer. Or not? If New Year’s Eve proved ANYTHING to me, you’re NEVER sure about ANYTHING until it’s done.)

While far from a “done deal,” you have to trust that Steve Bisciotti wouldn’t be bringing Garrett and his wife to town for a second tour simply for the crab cakes. Usually, the first stop is a coronation in waiting.

Now it’s simply down to the money and the terms. And with Atlanta waiting on deck, Bisciotti will have to open his checkbook or call another press conference to “pass” on Garrett. (Insert Joe Girardi joke here…)

So hold on tight — by tomorrow, Jason Garrett could be the Ravens head coach.

Or he could be in Atlanta allowing his wife to take a peak at Buckhead…

Hey, that’s why we follow this stuff because we don’t know what the intentions are. If he DOES make it to Atlanta and they offer the job as well, imagine the bidding war.

(But it usually doesn’t go that way, if history is an indicator. If Atlanta was where he wanted to be, he’d be there already instead of in Baltimore with Bisciotti on a Monday night.)

Either way, he’s here tonight and he wouldn’t be here if the Ravens weren’t serious about making him their coach. And he wouldn’t be here first if it weren’t his first choice (after all, Atlanta is a shorter flight from Dallas!).

Below is Garrett’s bio from www.dallascowboys.com. It didn’t have a direct link for linkability, but I found it interesting.

Including coming from a family of coaches, he’s led quite a full slate as a football lifer making the ultimate transition from player to coach to head coach.

Jason Garrett returns to Dallas in 2007 to handle the responsibilities of coordinating the Cowboys offense after spending the previous two seasons tutoring the Miami Dolphins quarterbacks. Garrett, who was a back-up quarterback to Troy Aikman in Dallas from 1993 to 1999 is very familiar with the championship heritage of the organization and was a member of Dallas teams that won five division titles and two Super Bowl championships.

Recognized as one of the bright young minds in NFL coaching on the offensive side of the ball, Garrett will take over a Dallas unit that enjoyed one of the most productive offensive seasons in club history last year. His previous NFL experience would indicate that he has been preparing for this throughout every stage of his career.

As a player, Garrett worked under highly successful offensive coordinators Norv Turner and Ernie Zampese in Dallas while providing sideline assistance to Aikman for the majority of his Hall of Fame career. After moving to New York in 2000, he helped guide starter Kerry Collins and the Giants to an NFC Championship and a Super Bowl berth while working along side current Saints head coach Sean Payton who was the team’s offensive coordinator. Garrett also gained valuable experience in absorbing Jon Gruden’s offensive philosophies during a stint with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the closing months of his playing career in 2004.

He entered the coaching profession in February of 2005 as the quarterback’s coach for Nick Saban’s first Miami Dolphins club. While in Miami, Garrett capably handled the challenge of having to work with five different starting quarterback over the course of 32 regular season games. In 2005, Miami quarterbacks threw 22 touchdowns with just 16 interceptions. Their plus-6 differential was the team’s best since the 1998 season when they were a plus-7 (23-16). In 2006, Garrett managed three starting quarterbacks for an offensive unit that produced four pass receivers who each had at least 55 receptions. It marked the first time in club history that four different receivers had at least 55 catches.

In his seven years as a player in Dallas, Garrett started nine of the 23 games in which he played. A key reserve player on two Super Bowl teams, he is best remembered for his Thanksgiving Day heroics in 1994. As the Cowboys third quarterback on the depth chart, he made his second career start against Green Bay after Aikman and backup quarterback Rodney Peete were felled with injuries in previous weeks. Garrett led Dallas to a thrilling 42-31 come-from-behind victory in which he directed the Cowboys to a club record 36 second half points with six consecutive second half scoring drives. He finished the day with 311 passing yards on 15 completions with two touchdown tosses and was named the NFC’s Offensive Player of the Week. He went on to start five games in 1998 and two games in 1999 to finish his days in Dallas with a 6-3 record as a starting quarterback.

Garrett served as the primary backup to Kerry Collins during the New York Giants run to the Super Bowl in 2000, and played the entire fourth quarter of the NFC Championship Game that year. He also spent the next three seasons with the Giants.

He concluded his career by splitting the 2004 season with Tampa Bay and Miami. Overall in his 12 NFL seasons, Garrett started nine of the 40 regular season games in which he played and completed 165-of-294 passes for 2,042 yards with 11 touchdowns and five interceptions.

As a senior at Princeton University in 1988, Garrett was named the Ivy League’s Player of the Year and honorable mention All American. He earned his degree in history in 1989, and moved on to the NFL as an undrafted rookie free agent with the Saints developmental squad. After being released prior to the 1990 season, he spent the fall of 1990 as an assistant coach at Princeton. In 1991, Garrett moved on to play in the World League and the Canadian Football League before joining the Cowboys practice squad in 1992.

Garrett, who prepped at University School in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, followed in his family footsteps in 2005. His father, Jim, spent more than 30 years in the NFL as a coach and scout. His brother, John, is now the tight ends coach with the Cowboys. Another brother, Judd, has been an assistant coach in the NFL since 1997 and is now the tight ends coach with the St. Louis Rams. An older brother, Jim, is currently the offensive coordinator at his prep alma mater, University School.

Jason and his wife Brill founded their charitable foundation, Jason Garrett Starfish Charities, in 1997 with the goal of enriching the lives of young people. The principle activity of the foundation is a one-day football camp and leadership forum for high school athletes that is held each summer at Princeton University in conjunction with Play It Smart, a programadministered by the National Football Foundation.

Born on March 28, 1966, Garrett resides in Dallas with his wife, Brill.

 

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