Mike Sherman is one of a handful of coaches who can tell you from experience just how good the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were a decade ago.
As coach of the Packers from 2000-2005, Sherman lost four of the seven games in which the Packers were pitted against the Bucs. Now he stands as a contender to bring back the glory the Bucs have lost the past few years.
The Bucs interviewed Sherman for their vacant head coach’s position Wednesday in Houston, a source close to Sherman said.
The other candidate interviewed is Tennessee Titans defensive coordinator Jerry Gray, who also met with Bucs officials Wednesday in Houston, according to multiple reports.
The Bucs are looking for a replacement for Raheem Morris, who was fired Monday after a three-year run.
Morris already might be in line for a new job. A report on Washington, D.C., radio station WTOP early Thursday said Morris was seen dining with Redskins coaches and team officials and might be in line to become the team’s secondary coach.
Morris, who spent four years coaching Bucs defensive backs before being promoted to head coach in 2009, could not be reached for comment on the report but said earlier in the week he plans to coach again soon.
"I’m a football coach, it’s what I do," said Morris, who compiled a 17-31 record during his three years as the Bucs coach. "I guess I just love to be miserable, so I’ll get back in somewhere. I can’t stay away."
Morris’ agent, Brian Levy, could not be reached for comment Thursday either, but when he was asked Wednesday if Morris had been approached about a job, he said, "I can’t answer that" question.
Sherman would bring a different approach to the Bucs. He is offensive-minded and is considered a solid disciplinarian who spent six seasons running the Packers, compiling a 57-39 record.
With the help of quarterback Brett Favre and a running game that set a franchise record for rushing yards in 2003, Sherman, 57, led the Packers to three consecutive NFC North division titles beginning in 2002.
Sherman was fired by the Packers following the 2005 season and caught on as head coach at Texas A&M in 2008, but was fired following the 2011 season after a 6-6 year left him with a 25-25 record.
Reached earlier on Thursday, Sherman said he preferred not to speak about his opportunity to return to the NFL with the Bucs.
"With stuff like this, I don’t want to comment because it never helps you," Sherman said. "I just don’t want to comment on jobs I don’t have. If the Bucs want to respond or something, that’s fine, but I’d just rather stay away from it."
Other than Sherman and Gray, the Bucs might have interest in Atlanta Falcons offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey, but the Bucs have yet to seek permission to speak to him, a source close to Mularkey said. However, the Florida Times Union reported the Jacksonville Jaguars have asked the Falcons for permission to speak to Mularkey about their coaching vacancy.
There is also a chance the Bucs will speak with former Titans coach Jeff Fisher, but an ESPN report said Fisher is interested in coaching only the Miami Dolphins or St. Louis Rams.