Both the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinal and the Green Bay Press Gazette put polls on their respective web sites asking readers to select who they think the Packers should hire as offensive coordinator, replacing new Miami head coach Joe Philbin.
The Press-Gazette's favors former Steelers QBs coach Tom Clements, who's in that capacity in Green Bay, at 69.7 percent, over Someone Outside the Organization (13.7 percent), receivers coach Edgar Bennett (8 percent) and having head coach Mike McCarthy take on that role (4.7 percent).
The MJS posted the question, "Would you be in favor of Mike McCarthy promoting Tom Clements to offensive coordinator?" and 89 percent of the 1,714 voters said yes.
Both publications point out they aren't to be taken as legitimate scientific polls, but it does show overwhelming support for one man to stay put. Unfortunately, that man is thought to be a candidate for the Steelers open offensive coordinator position.
The decision to offer a contract to an interviewing coach usually is made fairly quickly after he interviews for the position. Oftentimes, the interview itself is merely a way for the sides to meet face-to-face to go over a few details, and will either sign the contract that day, or wait until the next day.
Former Colts coach Jim Caldwell reportedly interviewed with Steelers coach Mike Tomlin Jan. 28, and news broke on Jan. 29 he was accepting a position with Baltimore.
Former Chiefs coach Todd Haley reportedly met with Tomlin Tuesday, and there has been no word of any offer that was made.
One possible reason for that, as SCI's Jim Wexell initially pointed out, is the Steelers are waiting on the Packers to announce their new offensive coordinator. Those polls suggest what even Packers QB Aaron Rodgers has said in regards to Clements' candidacy:
I'm feeling a little selfish when it comes to Tom. I have a real good relationship with him. It's been a real good six years together. I want to keep it going. I think Tom deserves to take a jump though. I think it would be a seamless transition to have him as the offensive coordinator in Green Bay as Joe (Philbin) has moved on now.
Also, McCarthy denied Chicago permission to interview Clements back in 2009, suggesting the possibility Clements and McCarthy had a similar deal as Steelers linebackers coach Keith Butler and Mike Tomlin have.
If Clements wasn't allowed to pursue another opportunity two years ago before Rodgers became the soon-to-be-named NFL MVP, it seems odd they'd be willing to let him go now, especially since he gets such a ringing endorsement from his star pupil.
If that's the case, what's the delay in announcing Clements' promotion? Philbin was hired 12 days ago. He's even hired both his offensive (Mike Sherman) and defensive (Joe Coyle) coordinators. No word ever came out about whether Philbin was interested in Clements as offensive coordinator, which would suggest even more strongly the Packers will name him to that position. They're just biding their time, it seems.
It's possible that may be holding up the Steelers' search as well.
Clements name has only come up in conversation, and there hasn't been any kind of link between the current Steelers opening and the Pittsburgh native, but if McCarthy decides to go in another direction with their offensive coordinator position, it seems not granting permission for Clements to pursue a coordinator position would really reflect low character on McCarthy - a high-character guy, by all accounts.
Even with lack of news suggesting Haley is a serious candidate (Gerry Dulac of the Post-Gazette says Haley's chances are "remote"), the real delay could be the possibility of the Packers weighing other options for their own position, and if it isn't Clements, the Steelers would be waiting to scoop him up.