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Jim Caldwell had 'excellent, outstanding' interview with Lions, Redskins up next

FootballPro FootballBaltimore RavensMatthew StaffordDetroit LionsSuper Bowl

Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell met with Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford along with Lions vice chairman Bill Ford Jr., in what was characterized as an "excellent, outstanding interview" by Fritz Pollard Alliance chairman John Wooten.

Caldwell arrived well-prepared for his Friday interview for the Lions' head-coaching vacancy having studied every snap this past season for Stafford, who passed for 4,650 yards, 29 touchdowns and 19 interceptions with an 84.2 passer rating this past season.

"I'm getting great feedback from all sides and people in the room, and Jim felt exceptional about it," Wooten told The Baltimore Sun in a telephone interview. "Jim felt it was the best interview he's been on as a professional. He felt very good about it and they felt excellent about it. They told him they would get back to him in a few days. Jim was told they'll know something soon and be ready to make a move quickly one way or another."

Caldwell was unavailable for comment, and his agent did not return a call.

Up next for Caldwell is a scheduled interview Sunday with the Washington Redskins, according to Wooten.

A former Dallas Cowboys, Philadelphia Eagles and Ravens executive, Wooten praised Ravens general manager Ozzie Newsome and coach John Harbaugh for their support of Caldwell as he seeks a head-coaching job.

"The Ravens have been very supportive of Jim," Wooten said. "Jim has a great shot in Detroit,  and they have stood behind him."

If Caldwell lands a job, he could take some Ravens assistants with him. That could potentially include running back coach Wilbert Montgomery, who parted ways with the Ravens on Friday, and Ravens secondary coach Teryl Austin.

During the Detroit interview, Wooten said Caldwell arrived with a detailed plan that included drills for Stafford to work on during the offseason to address his shortcomings.

"Jim was extremely well-prepared," Wooten said. "He had watched every throw for Stafford and was able to break them down and look at every aspect of his motion and habits and what corrections he can make."

Caldwell won a Super Bowl as an assistant with the Indianapolis Colts and reached the Super Bowl as their head coach. He coached Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning for a decade as the Colts made nine consecutive playoff appearances and won seven AFC South division titles.

The Ravens promoted Caldwell to offensive coordinator in 2012 when they fired Cam Cameron, elevating him from quarterbacks coach as Flacco threw 11 touchdowns and zero interceptions during the postseason as he was named Most Valuable Player of Super Bowl XLVII.

However, the Ravens' offense finished 29th in total offense this past season as Flacco had a franchise-record 22 interceptions.

Wooten said that he didn't expect Caldwell to pursue the Penn State job where he was on the late Joe Paterno's coaching staff.

"Joe Paterno did a great service to Jim, teaching him about every aspect of coaching," Wooten said. "Jim was well-prepared when he became a head coach at Wake Forest and with the Colts." 

NOTE: Wooten said he has a call into Vanderbilt coach James Franklin, a former Maryland assistant, to see if he's interested in pursuing NFL head-coaching positions.

"I like the way he handles every situation on the field," Wooten said. "James is a hands-on guy."

awilson@baltsun.com

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