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PRO FOOTBALL DAILY REPORT : AROUND THE NFL : Seahawks Haven’t Settled on Erickson

Associated Press

Seattle Seahawks majority owner Ken Behring, speaking publicly for the first time since he fired coach Tom Flores last month, said he likes Dennis Erickson a lot but hasn’t offered him the head coaching job yet.

Behring said he also has scheduled interviews with several other candidates.

If Erickson, the University of Miami’s highly successful coach, is Behring’s leading candidate, he wouldn’t say that Monday.

Behring said he has three or four other interviews scheduled. He said he planned to interview fired defensive coordinator Rusty Tillman in Danville, Calif., this morning, but refused to identify any other candidates.

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Erickson, 47, who has won two national championships and has a 63-9 record in six seasons, was interviewed by Behring on Saturday in Danville. Erickson will coach the East team in the East-West All-Star Shrine next Saturday in Palo Alto.

“In my interview with him, he never mentioned money,” Behring said of Erickson. “You have to have a chemistry. In one meeting, it looked fine. But you need it both ways. You’re getting in bed with somebody for about five years or longer. Four years or whatever it is.”

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Denver Bronco owner Pat Bowlen spent four hours interviewing former Bronco coordinator Jim Fassel for the team’s head coaching job. But Bowlen said he still wants to talk with San Francisco offensive coordinator Mike Shanahan and Erickson.

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The future of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers remained in doubt when club officials rejected a $163 million bid from local investors hoping to buy the team and keep it in town.

The trustees overseeing the estate of late owner Hugh Culverhouse faced an afternoon deadline to respond to the offer made by a group led by Tampa developer Tommy Shannon.

Trustees Steve Story and Jack Donlan huddled with members of the Culverhouse family most of the day, reviewing the Shannon bid as well as others received Sunday and Monday.

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“There are evidently two, three, maybe even four offers on the table that are substantially higher,” Shannon said.

“We are led to believe they may be as much as $20 million to $30 million more than what we bid. . . . Obviously, these NFL franchises are worth more than we thought.”

Story, who read a brief statement and then refused to answer questions, would say only that “we have received several offers in excess of their proposal, and we are currently pursuing those bids.”

Baltimore Oriole owner Peter Angelos, who is seeking a team for that former NFL market, reportedly submitted a bid of at least $200 million for the Bucs late Sunday.

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