The Falcons met with Rex Ryan today, as anticipated, and it sounds like things went pretty well.
Ryan's interview ended after five or more hours, NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport reported, via a source informed of their situation.
The length of the interview is proof of mutual interest, even if both parties are moving on to their next round of interviews.
The Falcons still have an interview scheduled with Arizona Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles on Thursday, per Rapoport.
Five hours sounds like a tremendous, impressive interview, but I'm not familiar with the average length of an NFL head coach interview, so I'm not going to place an enormous amount of stock in the time. Ryan seems like an obvious frontrunner for the job given Arthur Blank's rumored interest, his experience and defensive acumen, but the Falcons still have interviews and there's really no point in hiring a search firm if you're not going to go through the entire process.
Ryan may interview with the Bills next. The Falcons still have Bowles and Teryl Austin to talk to—and potentially other candidates we haven't heard about—and I'd anticipate we'll start seeing a more concrete timetable or an actual hire next week.
Again, Ryan could still be hired, and either way I'm glad the Falcons appear to be doing more than just paying lip service to a thorough, deliberative hiring process for their next head coach. What are your thoughts?