(with 92.3 The Fan) Rumored NFL coaching candidate Condoleezza Rice -- yes, you read that right -- has received a glowing scouting report from NFL legend Tom Brady.
"I know Condoleezza, I've been around her a few times: She's such an impressive person," the New England Patriots quarterback said on WEEI's "Mut and Callahan" on Monday morning. "She's a great leader and just a wonderful woman. She's incredibly smart."
That was in general terms, though. Brady went to explain how difficult he thinks it would be for the 64-year-old former secretary of state to parachute into the coaching ranks.
"It's a tough job," Brady said. "It's really a lifetime committed to football. You see who I think is the best coach ever, Coach Belichick, his life's committed to football, and he's great at it. Many years of preparation and study and getting better at his craft."
Adam Schefter of ESPN reported Sunday morning that the Cleveland Browns have discussed interviewing Rice for their head coaching vacancy.
Browns general manager John Dorsey released a statement Sunday afternoon denying the team's reported interest.
“Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is a great leader, possesses the highest possible character and also happens to be a Browns fan,” Dorsey said in the statement. “I have the utmost respect and admiration for all she’s accomplished and was honored to meet her for the first time earlier this season. Our coaching search will be thorough and deliberate, but we are still in the process of composing the list of candidates and Secretary Rice has not been discussed.”
No woman has ever interviewed for an NFL head coaching job.
Although Rice has no football coaching experience, she currently serves on the College Football Playoff selection committee.
“I love my Browns -- and I know they will hire an experienced coach to take us to the next level,” Rice posted on Facebook in response to the ESPN report.
“On a more serious note, I do hope that the NFL will start to bring women into the coaching profession as position coaches and eventually coordinators and head coaches. One doesn't have to play the game to understand it and motivate players. But experience counts -- and it is time to develop a pool of experienced women coaches.
“BTW -- I'm not ready to coach but I would like to call a play or two next season if the Browns need ideas! And at no time will I call for a ‘prevent defense.’”
Rice served as president George W. Bush’s national security advisor from 2001-2005 before serving as secretary of state from 2005-2009.
Last week, Dorsey indicated that he is keeping all options open regarding the search.
“I just want the best possible head coach to move this thing forward regardless of age,” Dorsey said. “It could be a woman. I’m serious. We’re going to look at everything.”
The Browns are in search of their ninth full-time head coach since 1999 and fourth since 2013 after firing Hue Jackson on Oct. 29.