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Giants to Interview Teryl Austin for Head Coaching Position

The pool of candidates to succeed Tom Coughlin as Giants head coach continues to grow, as Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin will reportedly interview for the gig on Thursday.

Austin has been one of the quickest risers among coaching candidates the Giants have shown interest in. Although he spent ten years coaching defensive backs for the Cardinals, Seahawks and Ravens, he just became a defensive coordinator ahead of the 2014 season when the Lions hired him away from Baltimore.

The 50-year-old has had mixed results in his two seasons in Detroit. In 2014, his defense ranked second in the league in total defense, allowing just 300.9 yards per game. 2015 was not as kind to Austin’s Lions, as they dropped to 18th in the league. However, it’s worth noting the Lions lost defensive standouts Nick Fairley, Ndamukong Suh and George Johnson to free agency after the 2014 season, and LB DeAndre Levy missed all but one game this past season.

(Photo: USA Today)

Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin (Photo: USA Today).

Despite the rough overall numbers for the Lions’ defense in 2015, they did turn it around late, and a much-improved defense led by Austin played a big role in the Lions’ 6-2 finish to the season.

Austin joins a deep pool of coaching candidates the Giants are interested in. New York has already interviewed OC Ben McAdoo, and has interviews set up with Austin, DC Steve Spagnuolo, Bears OC Adam Gase and Jaguars OL coach Doug Marrone.

In an update from my story on Wednesday, the Giants have not yet scheduled an interview with Panthers DC Sean McDermott, though the Giants are believed to have interest in him.

The Giants will be the third team that Austin has interviewed with this week, as he has already met with the Dolphins and Browns. So far, it doesn’t appear that the Eagles, 49ers or Titans have reached out to Austin.

ESPN’s Josina Anderson reports that Austin’s preferred destination is Miami, so it appears if the Giants are serious about Austin they will have their work cut out for them.

Austin has also been speculated as a fit for the recently vacated Tampa Bay Buccaneers job. Lovie Smith was surprisingly let go by the Bucs on Wednesday night, with his team’s poor defense cited as the main reason.

Austin has not yet been linked to the Bucs vacancy, but his defensive prowess could be what Tampa Bay looks for in their next coach.

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