If Carl Peterson has decided who the next coach of the Kansas City Chiefs will be, he isn't saying.
"I have a short list and a long list," Peterson said Thursday after making the expected announcement that Frank Gansz was fired. "Obviously, I have some specific people in mind. I have not spoken with anyone yet and I have not asked for permission to speak with anyone whose team is involved in its season."I think I have an idea where I want to go. But now there are some things for me to do in regards to evaluating those potential head football coaches."
The new man will be the fifth head coach since 1977 for one of the NFL's most consistent losers.
Gansz' departure was assumed last month after Peterson was named president and general manager in a front office shakeup that saw Jack Steadman resign as president and Jim Schaaf fired as general manager.
Ganaz, 50, had a two-year record of 8-22-1, including a 4-11-1 mark this year as his Chiefs became the only team in the NFL without a victory on the road. He was not available for comment.
"This decision was one that I have come to after what I believe was an in-depth, thorough and hopefully fair evaluation," Peterson said at a news conference. "Frank Gansz is a man of integrity, talent and as fine a person as I know.
"My decision is based upon the fact that I believe this is in the best interest of the future of the Kansas City Chiefs. It is important for me to build my own organization."
Gansz and several of his key assistants, including defensive coordinator Rod Rust, had two years remaining on their contracts. Peterson said no one from the staff would be considered for the top spot and that the assistants had been told they were free to seek other jobs.
Speculation immediately turned to Dick Vermeil, a close friend of Peterson when they worked together with the Philadelphia Eagles. Vermeil, who coached the Eagles in the 1980 Super Bowl, is now working as a network analyst.