Lions coaching rumors: The latest on Ken Whisenhunt, Mike Munchak

Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODA

A rundown of the latest Detroit Lions coaching search news, which involves Ken Whisenhunt and Mike Munchak.

As the San Diego Chargers' playoff game against the Denver Broncos nears, offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt remains the clear favorite to land the Detroit Lions' head coaching job. There were various reports on Saturday suggesting that Whisenhunt is still the Lions' top candidate, and there's an expectation for negotiations to begin shortly after Sunday's game if the Chargers lose.

If the Lions hire Whisenhunt as their head coach, he is going to call his own plays on offense, according to Chris Mortensen. Whisenhunt has done wonders for the Chargers offense this season, so it's no surprise that he will continue calling plays as a head coach again.

It's also no surprise that Whisenhunt will likely be replaced in San Diego by quarterbacks coach Frank Reich, who once played quarterback for the Lions. Reich has had a big role in Philip Rivers' resurgence, and I'm sure Whisenhunt would love to add him to his new coaching staff. However, the Chargers are expected to promote Reich to offensive coordinator if Whisenhunt leaves, and assuming he's under contract for 2014, Reich won't be leaving San Diego.

In other Lions coaching news, Mortensen reported this about former Tennessee Titans head coach Mike Munchak, who interviewed with Detroit earlier this week:

Munchak followed up his interview with the Lions by speaking with the Houston Texans about their offensive line coach job. No disrespect to him personally, but an offensive line coach job seems like a much better fit for Munchak than another head coaching position. I'm hoping this piece of news was simply "leaked" to draw some of the attention away from Whisenhunt or perhaps to serve as potential leverage in contract negotiations. Either way, I have no interest in seeing Munchak become the next Lions head coach.

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