Arizona DC Bowles may lead Falcons' search

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By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman

ATLANTA (AP) -- With Rex Ryan no longer an option, three defensive coordinators, including Arizona's Todd Bowles, may lead the Atlanta Falcons' coach search.

The Falcons are expected to conduct second interviews with Bowles and Detroit's Teryl Austin this week. The team must wait for a follow-up meeting with Seattle defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, who is off-limits this week as the Seahawks prepare for the NFC championship game.

Ryan, the former Jets coach, accepted an offer to become Buffalo's coach following his interview with the Falcons last week. The Bills announced Ryan as their new coach on Monday, one day after he reached an agreement with the team.

That leaves the defensive coordinators as possible front-runners to replace fired coach Mike Smith.