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NFL coaching notes: Browns, Vikings, Redskins search updates

Could Lovie Smith be the next coach at USC?
Lovie Smith has emerged as a front runner for the Bucs job. (USATSI)

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Cleveland Browns: The Browns have asked for permission to interview Josh McDaniels (New England OC), Adam Gase (Denver OC), Dan Quinn (Seattle DC) and Todd Bowles (Arizona DC), according to league sources. More interviews could be coming. McDaniels is a definite favorite and I'd be surprised if it's anyone other than McDaniels or Gase.

Minnesota Vikings: The Vikings have asked permission for Darrell Bevell (Seattle OC), Quinn, Gase and have also reached out to UCLA coach Jim Mora, though no interview is expected there and Mora is very happy at his school. An offensive-minded coach is likely to end up getting the job with the need to finally develop a quarterback as paramount.

Houston Texans: Houston is focused in on Penn State's Bill O'Brien and a deal is likely to come together in the next day or two, sources said. It's possible he reaches out for 49ers defensive line coach Jim Tomsula as a defensive coordinator (Tomsula could get a head coaching interview at some point as well).

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Tampa is still putting together a list of candidates but former Bears coach Lovie Smith emerged as the front runner and already has strong ties to the organization. It would be surprising at this point if he did not land the job, though sources said he has interest in Detroit's opening as well.

Detroit Lions: Detroit could focus on the offensive side of the ball, with Matt Stafford a priority. Gase is expected to emerge there, as is Bengals OC Jay Gruden, who cannot be asked to interview until next week.

Washington Redskins: The Redskins are interested in Jay Gruden, and the Redskins are expected to attempt to interview Smith as well. Baylor coach Art Briles, who helped RGIII to a Heisman Trophy in college, could be very interested in that job if approached.

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