Roughly four full hours after the news that the Buffalo Bills had fired head coach Dick Jauron became public, the Bills have finally officially named an interim replacement. Perry Fewell, who served as Jauron's defensive coordinator through Jauron's entire tenure in Buffalo, will be the Bills' interim head coach for the next seven weeks.
Fewell, 47, is in the midst of his 12th season as an NFL coach. He spent 1998-2002 with the Jacksonville Jaguars as a defensive backs coach, before assuming the same position with the St. Louis Rams (2003-2004) and the Chicago Bears (2005), following current Bears head coach Lovie Smith through the final two locations. He then joined Jauron's staff as defensive coordinator - his first coordinator gig - when Jauron began assembling his staff early in 2006.
It's curious that it took the Bills this long to officially fill the position. Typically, when an NFL head coach is fired mid-season, the man making the decision already has a replacement in mind. We're just speculating here, so please don't take this anything more than that, but the time gap between firing and hiring could indicate that someone turned down the job between events. Given Bobby April's status as assistant head coach (as well as special teams coordinator), we think that's very possible - but again, it's just speculation on our part. It's also now irrelevant, as the Bills officially know who they'll be led by for the next two months.
Here's team owner Ralph Wilson's statement on the matter:
“Perry Fewell will be our Interim Head Coach. Perry has done a great job with our defense and has demonstrated excellent leadership skills as Defensive Coordinator. Our players and staff have a lot of confidence in him and that is important as we look forward to these next seven games.”