Kevin Demoff, the St. Louis Rams Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President of Football Operations, discussed the team's decision to fire head coach Steve Spagnuolo and GM Billy Devaney at a Monday afternoon press conference. Demoff spent most of his time answering questions and laying out the team's next steps for finding replacements. That included giving a response to a report earlier on Monday from Peter King involving Jeff Fisher, part of a string of rumors linking the Rams to Fisher.
Demoff denied King's report that the team has already spoken with Jeff Fisher and set up an interview with the former Titans head coach. He also laughed off the suggestion that Fisher was a match for the Rams because the former Titans coach is represented by Marvin Demoff, Kevin's father.
"Everybody assumes that because my father represents Jeff Fisher, there's a natural fit. His job is to represent Jeff Fisher; our job is to find the right head coach for the Rams," Demoff explained. "I don't think it's a foregone conclusion that because I know someone who happens to know Jeff well, that I know Jeff well, that Jeff's going to be our head coach."
"I know that makes for great conjecture, great internet fodder...but it's completely unfounded," Demoff said.
The Rams have not yet spoken with Fisher or any other candidates.
"Contrary to what's been written, there are no leading candidates, we have not spoken to any candidates," Demoff said. They did not want to make any moves in that direction until the team and owner Stan Kroenke had reached a final decision regarding Spagnuolo and Devaney, a decision that was reached on Sunday night.
There is no timetable for hiring someone, though the Rams COO made it clear that they plan to move forward quickly with the process. The Rams intend to start setting up interviews with candidates within the next 48 hours.
As they look for new leadership, the Rams will have some high profile assistance in the process. Demoff revealed that the team reached out to Dick Vermeil, the Rams Super Bowl winning coach from 1997 through 1999, as well as Hall of Fame running back Marshall Faulk. Those two, along with others, will be involved in the search process. Owner Stan Kroenke, whose silence throughout the Rams 2-14 season was a constant topic for local talk radio and message boards, will be "heavily involved" in hiring the team's next head coach and general manager.
Leadership and accountability will be a key part of the Rams next hires. Demoff described the need for an "adaptable and smart" football mind for the head coaching position. As far as what the Rams are seeking in a general manager, Demoff noted a preference for someone with a strong background in personnel and consensus building, someone to bring together the vision of the coaching staff and the assessments of the scouting department.
"We're serious about getting this right and we're serious about building winning tradition in St. Louis," concluded Demoff.