Ed Driscoll

OLD AGE HAVING A GO AT YOUTH

Bernie Lincicome of the Rocky Mountain News writes that the “NFL prefers its coaches shelved, aged”.

I’m sure this will be an AARP magazine cover story next fall.

UPDATE: Skip Bayless writes that 72 year old Bill Walsh is friends with Al Davis, and is sorely tempted to coach the Raider. But his wife suffered a stroke five years ago and he’s devoting his time to nursing her health:

So there it sits, just across the bay, tempting and even tormenting Walsh — the one almost-workable opportunity for him to return to the sidelines. Walsh watches Bill Parcells return and take Dallas to the playoffs in his first season, at 62. He watches Joe Gibbs return like George Washington from the dead to Washington at 63. He watches Dick Vermeil commit at 67 to another season in Kansas City.

Walsh belongs to a generation of coaches who often retired too early mostly because society told them it was time to. He has discovered what most do — that gardening and golfing can’t begin to measure up to the grueling joy of coaching. They all need a break and they almost all realize they need coaching.

No one ever has been better than Walsh at knowing and utilizing talent on offense and defense. Not Lombardi. Not Landry. Not anybody.

What a waste it seems to be for Walsh to be watching so many others return.

Of course, if not this season, maybe next. And maybe not with the Raiders. But it’s possible–if remote–that the final chapter of Bill Walsh’s career as a coach hasn’t been written yet.