Tim Mara, vice president of the New York Giants, said yesterday that George Allen is his No. 1 choice to be coach.
Tim put his uncle, Wellington, on the spot with the announcement because the club president has let it be known he adamantly opposed Allen's tactics against the Giants as coach of the Redskins.
Wellington Mara ignored his nephew's previous insistence that a general manager be hird first and said Thursday that he was going to "find a coach and put him in full control of the football operations."
Tim Mara promised to fight that action and then lobbed the ball back in his uncle's court yesterday by nominating Allen. Wellington Mara was not available for comment.
"The man we should consider as candidate for coach, the guy who should be our No. 1 person, is George Allen," Tim Mara said at the Giants' headquarters in East Rutherford, N.J.
"Look at his record. He's a winner. If we already had a director of operations (general manager), I would have asked him (Wellington) to interview Allen.
"Since we're going to start interviewing coaches now, the first guy to look at is Allen. But just as coach. That's where I think his value to a team is, because he's a winner."
Tim Mara said he talked with Allen two weeks ago when he (Tim) was in Los Angeles for the Pro Bowl game. "I told him I was well aware of his record, but that first (at that time) we were looking for a director of operations, and he understood."
Asked about Wellington Mara's publicized objections to Allen, the younger Mara said, "It's like I was saying yesterday (Thursday). Well wants a winner, but he wants it his way. His way has been holding us back for 15 years."
Last week, Allen apologized publicly to Redskin President Edward Bennett Williams for remarks he made after declining to sign a new Washington contract and being fired.
The apology was interpreted as notice to prospective employers that Allen was ready to be entirely cooperative.
A source close to NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle's attempt to arbitrate the dispute between the Maras, who each own 50 percent of the Giants' stock, was asked if Rozelle persuaded Allen to apologize to Williams.
He would only say that the commissioner talked to Allen in the press box at the Pro Bowl, before the apology. Unless Wellington Mara has relented, he was represented by the source as still adamantly opposed to hiring Allen.
Allen was fired twice last year, by the Redskins and by the Los Angeles Rams, after two exhibition games.
Allen has made it clear as an analyst on network-TV game telecasts and in a column he writes for the Los Angeles Times that he would like to coach the Giants.
Carroll Rosenbloom, owner of the Rams, remarked yesterday, "I have said all along there are only a few teams that Allen's special talents would fit, and the Giants is one of them."
Rosenbloom who is paying off, at $200,000 annually, the interest he gave Allen, added, "Al Davis (general managing partner of the Oakland Raiders) almost hired Allen, I think."
That was before the Raiders Thursday promoted Tom Flores to replace Head Coach John Madden, who retired.