Multiple media outlets in Cincinnati are reporting that Bengals offensive line coach Jim Turner is out from the staff of second-year coach Zac Taylor, as Taylor readies for major changes moving into a pivotal third year atop the franchise.
Elise Jesse first reported that Turner was not expected to return.
Turner's a 26-year coaching veteran who's expected to have immediate interest from the collegiate ranks. A source with direct knowledge of the situation said that Turner has been mentioned as a candidate for the vacant offensive line job at the University of Tennessee.
The Vols late last month lost longtime Jeremy Pruitt confidante Will Friend to the offensive line position at South Carolina under first-year coach Shane Beamer.
Turner has a strong connection to one of the Vols' most respected offensive staff members, running backs coach and former Tennessee all-time great running back, Jay Graham.
The Vols, sources told FootballScoop, also reached out to Green Bay Packers assistant offensive line coach Luke Butkus, though indications at this time are Butkus prefers to remain in the NFL. The Packers are vying for homefield advantage throughout the playoffs in the NFC.
Tennessee's coaches, led by Pruitt, have been conducting interviews via Zoom in recent weeks for at least a pair of openings on staff; the Vols need both an offensive line coach as well as a defensive line coach after Pruitt in October fired defensive line coach Jimmy Brumbaugh.
However, per two sources in the University of Tennessee athletics program, Pruitt right now is not being allowed to finalize any potential hires on his Vols' staff while the school conducts an in-house look into NCAA compliance matters. Tennessee has retained outside counsel for the process, as reported by VolQuest.com, and members of the Vols' staff also are being subjected to inquiries led by the school's compliance director, per sources with direct knowledge.
There are currently quite a few offensive line jobs available at the FBS level.
As always stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest coaching news.