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Dolphins assistant Bowles a candidate in Detroit

Dolphins assistant head coach and secondary coach Todd Bowles is a candidate for the head coaching job with the Detroit Lions, the Miami Herald has confirmed.

The story, first reported by NFL.com, has legs. Although the Dolphins are declining comment, the interview is already scheduled for next week -- perhaps Tuesday or Wednesday if the Dolphins are out of the playoffs.

Bowles is in his ninth season as an NFL assistant and first with the Dolphins.

The Lions have already set up an interview with Tennessee defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz for this weekend. The fact Bowles has not been a coordinator will not hurt him as several coaches were hired recently -- Baltimore's John Harbaugh among them -- who were never offensive or defensive coordinators.

Aside from being a viable candidate, Bowles will help the Lions fulfill the requirements of the Rooney Rule which stipulates at least one minority candidate must be interviewed when head coach or general manager openings are available.