UPDATE: Falcons offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey would not comment about his pending interview with the Jacksonville Jaguars on Tuesday.
“I’m totally working on the Giants,” said Mularkey during his weekly meeting with the media. “That’s strictly all business with that and trying to get ready for that.”
Per league rule, Mularkey can’t interview with Jacksonville this week. He must be made available next week if the Falcons advance in the playoffs.
Mularkey could also become a candidate in Tampa Bay, but reiterated that he’s focused on the team’s playoff game.
“There’s just so much going on different going on during the season, during the week,” Mularkey said. ”I can’t tell you how from the minute we get here to the minute we get home, it’s just so structured that there’s not enough time to really focus on anything else. And I’m serious about that.
“Every minute has something going on in it and what’s interesting is that at the end of the week when it’s over, Friday comes around and everything is installed and put in, all the sudden it hits you on Friday, especially late in the season, you don’t realize how tired you are because you don’t have time to think about it ’til when it’s all put in. There’s too much going on, especially this time for any of us to be worried about anything, but this game.”
FLOWERY BRANCH – The Falcons have granted offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey permission to
interview for the vacant Jacksonville job.
“They have requested an opportunity to talk to Mike Mularkey and really the league has a policy in place for wildcard teams,” Falcons coach Mike Smith said. “There is a certain time period that they can interview. We have of course signed off and granted that opportunity.”
Mularkey was a candidate last season for head coaching jobs in Cleveland and Denver. He interviewed with Cleveland, but withdrew from the Denver search. Cleveland hired Pat Shurmur and Denver hired John Fox.
Jacksonville dismissed Jack Del Rio this season. He was replaced on an interim basis by Mel Tucker.
Mularkey wants to be a head coach again. He was the Buffalo coach in 2004-05 and posted a 14-18 record.
Mularkey and Bill Musgrave, who left last season to become Minnesota’s offensive coordinator, have been lauded league-wide for their fast development of quarterback Matt Ryan and for turning the Falcons’ offense into one of the league’s top units.
Mularkey is attractive because of his background in coaching power football. Jacksonville also needs someone to develop quarterback Blaine Gabbert, who struggled in his first year in the league.
“When you have success there are going to be opportunities for guys on your staff to get head coaching jobs,” Smith said. “I don’t have any doubt in my mind that Mike’s sole focus for this week is on the New York Giants.”
–D. Orlando Ledbetter, The Atlanta Falcons beat blog