All seven head coaching hires of the 2021 NFL offseason came before Super Bowl LV, but a new rule proposed by the Buffalo Bills would make that impossible moving forward. According to Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer, the AFC runners-up have suggested delaying head coaching and front-office hires until after the Super Bowl, while also forbidding interviews until after the conference championship games in late January. The NFL could vote on implementing the rule this offseason, Breer reported Wednesday.
It's unclear whether the proposed rule would have any traction among other teams, let alone enough to result in a major makeover of the hiring process. But it would represent a major makeover, indeed. Currently, teams are permitted to begin interviewing candidates for head coaching vacancies immediately after the regular season's conclusion. While conference championship weeks have more restrictions as far as in-person interviews go, most teams finalize new head coaches, as well as prominent front-office openings like general manager, well before the offseason even gets under way.
The Bills have reportedly proposed the new rule in the wake of offensive coordinator Brian Daboll's surprisingly quiet candidacy as part of this year's head coaching cycle. As Breer notes, five different assistants from this year's conference finalists were requested for 14 different head coaching interviews, and not a single one of them actually became a head coach.