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Welcome to the Thursday edition of the Pick Six newsletter!

It's official: The Harbaugh brothers are taking over the NFL. Not only do we have John Harbaugh coaching in the AFC Championship this week, but we also have Jim Harbaugh making his return to the NFL after nine seasons away after he decided to take the Chargers job on Wednesday. 

We now have a guy who only knows how to win going to the organization that always finds a new way to lose, which means this is going to end one of two ways: Either Harbaugh is going to win a Super Bowl in L.A. or the Chargers are going to chew him up and spit him out like they've done with every other coach in franchise history. 

We'll be taking a closer look at Harbaugh's hiring in today's newsletter, plus we'll be looking at who has the edge at each position in both the AFC and NFC title games. 

Also, the Carolina Panthers made a coaching hire just as we were sending the newsletter out and although we won't have much on that today -- bad timing, Panthers -- you can read our full story here. The Panthers went with Dave Canales, which wasn't a huge surprise. The former Buccaneers offensive coordinator spent eight years in Seattle with new Panthers general manager Dan Morgan, so there was a lot of familiarity there. 

Anyway, here's your daily reminder to tell all your friends to sign up for the newsletter. To get them signed up, all you have to do is click here. Let's get to the rundown. 

1. Today's show: Two former NFL players break down the latest NFL news

Bill Belichick USATSI

For today's episode of the "Pick Six NFL" podcast, we brought on two former NFL players to break down all of the latest NFL news: Bryant McFadden and Leger Douzable.

Host Will Brinson joined them during the show, and the three of them had an interesting conversation about Bill Belichick. The former Patriots head coach has already interviewed with the Atlanta Falcons, but outside of that, it doesn't seem like anyone else is really interested in him just yet.

McFadden and Douzable tried to figure out why teams may be shying away from the six-time Super Bowl winner. 

"If no one else wants you, there's usually a reason why," Douzable said. "He hasn't really proven that he can develop a first-round quarterback. We saw what happened to Mac Jones. If you look at Belichick without Tom Brady, his record is sub-.500. If I'm Belichick, I'm probably thinking about retirement."

During his eight-year NFL career, Douzable played against Belichick's Patriots eight times, so he's pretty familiar with the 71-year-old. Douzable also has a theory on why things haven't moved forward yet between Belichick and the Falcons. 

"I think they realize that no one else is really clamoring to get Bill Belichick," Douzable said. "Because it's the Patriot Way and is that really conducive to the current NFL right now? I don't think so and I think it would be tough for Belichick to have success with the Falcons."

If you want to hear Douzable's full thoughts on the situation, along with McFadden's, then be sure to click here so you can listen to today's episode. The three guys also talked about some of the other coaching openings, and of course, they also broke down the conference title games. If you prefer your podcasts in video form, you can watch today's episode on YouTube by clicking here.

2. Jim Harbaugh headed to L.A.: Five things to know about the Chargers' splashy hire

Less than 20 days after leading Michigan to the college football national championship, Jim Harbaugh has decided to make the jump to the NFL. The Chargers hired Harbaugh on Wednesday night, and if he's as successful with them as he has been at all his prior stops, then there's a good chance we could see L.A. competing for a Super Bowl in the near future.  

Here's everything you need to know about the hiring: 

  • Chargers finally make a big hire. The Chargers past three coaching hires all had one big thing in common: None of them had ever been a head coach before. After watching that plan fail three straight times, the Chargers decided it was time to swing for the fences and they did that by hiring Harbaugh. According to ESPN, the Chargers have given him a five-year deal, which means he's going to have plenty of time to get this team fixed, although he may not need much time based on his prior track record. 
  • No one can turn around a team like HarbaughThis will be the fifth coaching stop of Harbaugh's career, and he's had tremendous success at every place he's been. He started at the University of San Diego, where he went 29-6 over three seasons (2004-06). In 2007, he took over a Stanford program that had gone 1-11 the year before he got there. By 2010, he had the Cardinal at 12-1 and in the Orange Bowl. As for his other college stop, we all know how that turned out. After going 5-7 in 2014, Michigan brought in Harbaugh and he had them at 10-3 in 2015. Eight years later, he led them to a 15-0 season that included Michigan winning its first national championship this century. 
  • It's Harbaugh's second NFL head coaching stint. One thing the Chargers probably loved is that Harbaugh has already had a lot of success in the NFL. Harbaugh coached the 49ers for four seasons, and during those four years, he went to three NFC title games and a Super Bowl. He's the only head coach in NFL history to reach a conference title game in his first three years with a team. The 2011 NFL Coach of the Year went 44-19-1 during his four seasons in San Francisco, which gives him the sixth-best winning percentage in NFL history (.695) for anyone who has coached at least 50 games.  
  • Harbaugh has a history with the Chargers. Before becoming a coach, Harbaugh spent 15 years in the NFL as a player, and his final two seasons actually came with the Chargers (1999-2000). "When I played for the Chargers, the Spanos family could not have been more gracious or more welcoming," Harbaugh said Wednesday. "Being back here feels like home, and it's great to see that those things haven't changed."
  • Harbaugh Bowl will be coming in 2024. The Chargers 2024 schedule includes a home game against the Ravens, which means Jim Harbaugh will be coaching against John Harbaugh at some point next season. Unfortunately, we won't know the date of the game until the schedule is released in May. The two brothers famously faced off in Super Bowl XLVII with John's Ravens beating Jim's 49ers, 34-31.  

For our full story on Harbaugh's hiring, be sure to click here. We also went over why Harbaugh is the perfect guy to end the Chargers' long history of Chargering, and you can check out that story here

Will Brinson and I also recorded a podcast about the hiring, and you can watch that on YouTube here

If you want to stay up to date on the three remaining coaching searches going on around the league, including the latest interviews and the hottest candidates, be sure to check out our coaching tracker here.

3. AFC and NFC title games: Breaking down who has the edge

Lamar Jackson (left) and Patrick Mahomes Getty Images

If you're wondering who has the edge in the two games being played this weekend, don't worry, we have you covered. Jared Dubin went through EVERY position group in both games to figure out who has the edge going into Sunday. 

Let's take a look at two of his positional edges from each game. 

AFC Championship

QB Edge: Chiefs
Dubin's take: "Lamar Jackson is likely going to be named NFL MVP in a few weeks after a fantastic season. ... And yet, Mahomes is playing in his sixth consecutive AFC title game, having won three of the previous five. I find it extremely hard to bet against him in any scenario, and although Jackson had the better season, there is at the same time little doubt in my mind that Mahomes is the better player."

Wide Receiver Edge: Ravens
Dubin's take: "This one is almost no contest. Kansas City has exactly one wide receiver whom opponents need to worry about on any level: Rashee Rice. He's been better this season than anyone on the Ravens (who have their own explosive rookie wideout in Zay Flowers), but the rest of the Chiefs' receivers are such a disaster that the Ravens can't help but have a better group. ... The fact that Flowers, Odell Beckham Jr., Rashod Bateman and Nelson Agholor are clearly the better group is a wild turn of events, considering the issues the Ravens have had at receiver in recent years."

If you want to see who has the edge at every position group in the AFC title game, be sure to check out Dubin's full story here

NFC Championship

QB Edge: 49ers.
Dubin's take: "Brock Purdy and Jared Goff are pretty similar in that they are talented but limited quarterbacks who are unquestionably elevated by their scheme and surrounding talent. It's hard to extricate either of these players from their surroundings, but Purdy has shown a bit more ability to create outside of structure and under pressure, and has shown a higher ceiling in terms of his raw production -- even while throwing at lower volume."

Offensive Line Edge: Lions
Dubin's take: "This is the Lions' greatest area of strength, and they will need it to be just that on Sunday to pull off the upset. Penei Sewell is already one of the premier right tackles in the league. Center Frank Ragnow and guard Jonah Jackson are very, very good. (Ragnow's injury status will be important to watch this week with Jackson already being ruled out.) Graham Glasgow and Taylor Decker are quality starters. Trent Williams is the best offensive lineman on either team, and possibly in the entire league. But the rest of San Francisco's offensive line is not nearly of the same quality, so Detroit gets the edge here."

For a look at who has the edge at each position group in the NFC, you our full list here

4. Bill Vinovich gets tabbed as Super Bowl ref: Here's how each team has recently fared with him 

We don't know who will be playing in the Super Bowl yet, but we do know who will be officiating it, and that's because the NFL announced this week that Bill Vinovich has been tabbed as the referee for the game. This will mark the third time Vinovich has been the referee for a Super Bowl. 

With four teams still fighting to get to the Super Bowl, here's a look at how the 49ers, Lions, Chiefs and Ravens have fared over the past five years when Vinovich has served as the ref in one of their games (stats via Pro Football Reference).

  • Lions: 2-2 (1-0 in 2023)
  • 49ers: 2-4 (0-1 in 2023)
  • Ravens: 7-2 (2-0 in 2023)
  • Chiefs: 5-2 (0-0 in 2023)

If the Ravens and 49ers end up playing in the Super Bowl, Vinovich would be seeing those two teams play each other for the second time this season, and that's because the veteran official was the referee when Baltimore beat San Francisco, 33-19, back on Christmas night. 

The Chiefs are the only remaining team that didn't have Vinovich as a ref for a single game this year. If it ends up being a Chiefs-49ers Super Bowl, that would almost be fitting, because Vinovich was the ref when those two teams met in Super Bowl LIV. 

The 63-year-old Vinovich just finished up his 18th season as an NFL official with 15 of those coming as a referee. Vinovich has actually been an official since 2001, but he had to take a few years off starting in 2007 after experiencing a serious heart condition

Vinovich's crew will include umpire Terry Killens, whom I'm only mentioning because he's going to make NFL history. Killens played for the Titans in Super Bowl XXXIV, which means he'll become the first person ever to play in a Super Bowl and officiate a Super Bowl. 

5. 15 key facts to know about the conference title games

49ers QB Brock Purdy USATSI

The research team here at CBS Sports came up with 15 key facts that you need to know about the AFC and NFC title games. We're going to cover five of them here, so let's do it. 

  • 1. Road to redemption: "The Lions haven't won a road playoff game since 1957 in San Francisco. They have lost 11 straight road playoff games since then, which is the longest streak in NFL history."
  • 2. Purdy sweep. "The 49ers are a perfect 5-0 in Brock Purdy's starts this year vs. the NFC playoff field, beating the Cowboys, Buccaneers, Eagles, Rams and Packers. A win vs. the Lions would mean a clean sweep and an exclamation point on San Francisco's NFC title. Purdy can become the first QB (for any team) since Joe Montana in 1984 to sweep every playoff team in his conference between the regular season and postseason."
  • 3. Action Jackson. "Lamar Jackson is the first QB in NFL history to lead his team in rush yards during the regular season and start a conference title game."
  • 4. It's hard to win the rushing title and the Super Bowl in the same year. "With a 49ers win over the Lions, Christian McCaffrey can become the first running back to win a rushing title and make the Super Bowl since Shaun Alexander in 2005. The only rushing title winners to win a Super Bowl are Emmitt Smith (1992, 1993, 1995) and Terrell Davis (1998)."
  • 5. Super stakes. "With a win on Sunday, the Chiefs can become the third team to make four Super Bowls in a five-year span, joining the 1990-93 Bills and 2014-18 Patriots. If the 49ers win on Sunday, Brock Purdy (262nd pick) will become the lowest drafted QB to ever start a Super Bowl (two undrafted quarterbacks have started a Super Bowl with Kurt Warner and Jake Delhomme). "

If you want to see check out all 15 key facts, be sure to check out Doug Clawson's full story here

6. Extra points: Eagles have a new defensive coordinator

It's been a busy 24 hours in the NFL, and since it's nearly impossible to keep track of everything that happened, I went ahead and put together a roundup for you. 

  • Eagles set to hire Vic Fangio. Less than 24 hours after parting ways with the Dolphins, Vic Fangio already has a new team. The Eagles have hired Fangio to replace Sean Desai at defensive coordinator. Fangio almost ended up in Philadelphia last season, but that fell through. You can read more about Fangio's firing here
  • Bengals have a new offensive coordinator. The Bengals have already found a replacement for Brian Callahan, who was hired by the Titans this week. The team is promoting QBs coach Dan Pitcher to OC. Pitcher has been with the Bengals since 2016 when Marvin Lewis was still the coach. You can read more about Pitcher here
  • Steelers defensive coordinator gets two-year deal. The Steelers didn't technically have a defensive coordinator for the past two weeks, but they do now. Teryl Austin's contract expired at the end of the season and it wasn't clear if he'd be returning, but we now know he'll definitely be coming back. The team is finalizing a two-year extension that will keep Austin in Pittsburgh through the 2025 season. 
  • Levi's Stadium will be staying as Levi's Stadium. Levi's will be paying a lot of money to keep their name on the 49ers stadium. The team announced that Levi's has signed a 10-year extension for naming rights to the 49ers' home. According to the Sports Business Journal, the deal is worth $170 million ($17 million per year). The extension keeps the Levi's name on the 49ers home stadium through the 2043 season. Levi's Stadium hosted Super Bowl 50 in February 2016 and will once again be hosting in February 2026 with Super Bowl XL scheduled to be played in the Bay Area.