Mike Heimerdinger’s return to the Tennessee Titans as offensive coordinator appeared imminent Wednesday night, just hours after the Denver Broncos granted permission for him to speak with his former club.
Heimerdinger, who was the Titans’ offensive coordinator for five seasons from 2000-04, would replace the man who replaced him, as Norm Chow was fired on Tuesday. Both Heimerdinger and Titans coach Jeff Fisher are on vacation, but barring unforeseen complications, a deal could be worked out shortly.
According to those with knowledge of the situation, some in the Broncos’ organization have already conceded that Heimerdinger will be returning to the Titans, as soon as a contract can be finalized.
Heimerdinger did not comment when contacted by The City Paper Wednesday afternoon and did not return a call on Wednesday night.
A statement from Heimerdinger’s current boss Mike Shanahan in Denver was telling on Wednesday.
“The opportunity in Tennessee would give Mike the chance to go back to an organization and work with a head coach with whom he is very familiar, handling the entire offense and having full control over game-planning and play-calling responsibilities,” Shanahan said in an e-mailed statement Wednesday granting permission.
Heimerdinger, who was the Titans offensive coordinator from 2000-04, has the title of offensive coordinator in Denver, but defers play-calling to Shanahan.
Heimerdinger, 55, surfaced almost immediately as the top candidate on Tuesday when Chow was fired after a three-year run as Heimerdinger’s successor.