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Sherman a finalist, but Bucs have not contacted any coaches interviewed to tell them they're out

Former Green Bay Packers and Texas A&M coach Mike Sherman is the first to be called for a second interview for the Bucs head coaching job and obviously a finalist.

But the Bucs have not contacted a single coach they interviewed to inform them that they are no longer under consideration, the Times has learned.

Meanwhile, the team says it is making progress on hiring a new head coach.

What does all that mean?

If they're making progress and none of those other coaches they've interviewed have been contacted, maybe Sherman will be the Bucs' choice after all. Until an agreement is reached on a contract, why not keep the others in play by telling them nothing? Also, at least one or more of those candidates may become members of Sherman's staff and the Bucs want to keep them available.

It could also mean that Sherman is not the only finalist. Why else would the Bucs keep so many other coaches, some of whom are already under contract with teams, in limbo?

Finally, there could be some coaches, a la Oregon's Chip Kelly, who interviewed under the radar and are being invited for second interviews.

Given all those scenarios, the one that makes the most sense is that there is a strong chance Mike Sherman will be the Bucs next head coach. At 57, he is an experienced, grizzled NFL and college head coach with an offensive background. He won four NFC North titles in six seasons and his undoing was his failure controlling personnel decisions. Sherman also would have the ability to put together a pretty good coaching staff, which is just as critical to the Bucs success.

But if the Bucs are truly making progress, we'll know sooner than later.