Add his name to Dennis Green and Jim Fassel as former NFL head coaches to get gigs in the fledgling league. But he may not be the last recognizable NFL personality to land in the UFL. According to ESPN's Chris Mortensen, there may be a gleam in Virginia.
Mortensen later reported that the league could be working on a sixth franchise in Chattanooga, TN which might feature a father and son reunion with Jim and Jeremy Bates.
Ever since the league launched in 2009, there has been talk that it could position itself to be the pro football organization of choice if the NFL went through with its threats of a lockout. Obviously we are a long way from missing any NFL games, but the UFL has already done a good job of establishing credibility. Hiring big name coaches, signing players with significant NFL experience and picking up a cable television deal through Versus shows that the league is serious about creating a respectable product that's about more than just sizzle (read: the XFL). The league's cautious growth model will help it avoid spending beyond its means.
More importantly, it could become an attractive opportunity for many players whose bank accounts may not be able to survive a protracted work stoppage. We've already seen a couple of low-profile guys take their talents to the Arena League and one high-profile guy who's changing from football to futbol.
For all of the things the NFL owners have to worry about in the upcoming weeks and months, the most damaging issue is the possibility that people will eventually learn to live without them. We could be seeing the start of that.