NFL notebook: Marrone rumored to be Jets next coach
• Doug Marrone, who opted out of his contract with the Bills on Wednesday and interviewed with the Jets on Saturday, reportedly could be their next coach by the end of the week. CBSSports.com reported all signs point to Marrone as the Jets’ next coach. Sources said Marrone’s departure from the Bills might have been triggered by the decision to trade up and draft wide receiver Sammy Watkins.
• The Raiders requested permission to speak with Cowboys offensive coordinator Scott Linehan about their vacant head coaching position. Linehan, 51, posted an 11-25 record as Rams coach from 2006-08.
• The Redskins plan to interview former Broncos, Bills and Cowboys coach Wade Phillips this week for their vacant defensive coordinator position.
• Chris Ballard is expected to be named general manager of the Bears, according to published reports. Ballard has 12 years experience in personnel, including as a scout with the Bears.
• The fate of Falcons general manager Thomas Dimitroff remains uncertain as the team continues its search for a coach. Owner Arthur Blank reportedly has informed his personnel department, including Dimitroff and top aide Scott Pioli, that the new coach will have a say in the make-up of the front office.
• Cardinals wide receiver Jaron Brown fractured his shoulder blade in the 27-16 wild-card loss to the Panthers on Saturday and will be out four to six months.
• The Saints signed running back Tim Hightower to a reserve/future contract, giving him a chance to resurrect his career after a lingering knee injury. Hightower, 28, has been out of football since suffering a torn ACL and undergoing surgery in 2011 as a member of the Redskins.