The Atlanta Falcons called Tuesday to ask the Tennessee Titans for permission to interview defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz for its head coaching vacancy.
Schwartz helped engineer a Titans defense that finished fifth in the NFL this season and spearheaded Tennessee’s return to the playoffs for the first time in four seasons.
The Titans had finished last in the NFL the season before in total defense, but were resurgent in large part to the play of the defensive line.
One major change to the defense came with the shifting of Kyle Vanden Bosch to right defensive end to play alongside Albert Haynesworth, who emerged as one of the NFL’s most disruptive defensive tackles. Both Vanden Bosch and Haynesworth made the Pro Bowl this season.
The Falcons have been in the market for a head coach since the sudden in-season resignation of Bobby Petrino to take the coaching vacancy at the University of Arkansas.
The Falcons are attempting to hire a new general manager as well.
Schwartz, 42, has been Tennessee’s defensive coordinator for the past seven seasons and has been with the franchise for nine years overall.
His name has surfaced in the vacancy for the Baltimore Ravens job as well, but the Ravens have not yet asked for permission to speak with him.
Schwartz’s interview date with the Falcons is not yet known.