NFL Week 18 Coaching Overreactions and Reactions

NFL Week 18 Coaching Overreactions and Reactions

NFL Week 18 Overreactions

Sports Seriously’s Mackenzie Salmon breaks down the last regular season games of Week 18.

It didn’t take long for the NFL’s “Black Monday” to officially begin.

Just after midnight eastern time, the Atlanta Falcons fired coach Arthur Smith, dismissing him just hours after a blowout loss to the New Orleans Saints capped his three-year run with the franchise.

And that was just the start of the action. Early Monday morning, the Washington Commanders moved on from coach Ron Rivera.

The day marks an annual reckoning for coaching staffs and front offices throughout the league. More moves are sure to come – although some might not be completed until later in the week – so stick with USA TODAY Sports for all the moves on firings and resignations.

Robert Saleh knew he was safe for next season after receiving an endorsement from Jets owner Woody Johnson. Now, the coach is extending that same security to the rest of his staff.

Saleh said Monday he expects to have all three coordinators back for 2024.

The coach also said he does not expect to make any significant changes to the coaching staff for next season.

The New England Patriots’ future with Bill Belichick remains murky, but the coach finally addressed his standing with team on Monday.

Asked about the possibility of giving up personnel control to remain with team, Belichick didn’t close the door on the hypothetical.

“Look, I’m for whatever we decide collectively as an organization is the best thing to help our football team,” Belichick said. “I have multiple roles in that, and I rely on a lot of people to help me in those responsibilities. Somebody’s got to have the final say. I have it. I rely on a lot of other people to help. Whatever that process is, I’m only part of it.”

Belichick did not provide a definitive answer, however, on whether he would want to coach another team if he does not remain with the Patriots.

Shane Steichen appears to be standing pat entering Year 2 with the Indianapolis Colts.

Asked Monday about any potential changes to his staff, Steichen said, “I believe in continuity.”

Steichen reiterated the point when asked about defensive coordinator Gus Bradley, who led a unit that ranked 24th in yards allowed with 349.8.

The one move everyone expected on Monday is now official.

The Commanders decided to move on from Rivera after four seasons, the team announced.

Rivera’s fate seemed to have been sealed some time ago, but Washington ended the season on a league-worst eight-game losing streak to finish at 4-13.

New owner Josh Harris will now embark on his first coaching search with the franchise, with former Golden State Warriors general manager Bob Myers and former Minnesota Vikings general manager Rick Spielman hired to assist in the process, according to ESPN.

Whoever takes over should have a prime opportunity to flip the roster. The Commanders own the No. 2 pick in the 2024 NFL draft and currently trail only the Tennessee Titans in effective cap space for next season.

The Carolina Panthers belatedly finished cleaning house Monday morning, firing GM Scott Fitterer six weeks after head coach Frank Reich was relieved of his duties.

“As we move forward with the new direction for our franchise, I have made the decision that Scott Fitterer will no longer serve as our general manager,” owner David Tepper said in a statement. “I appreciate Scott’s efforts and wish the best for him and his family.”

Despite acquiring the No. 1 overall pick of the 2023 draft and selecting Alabama QB Bryce Young, the Panthers finished with a league-worst 2-15 record. However they won’t be selecting first in this year’s draft because Fitterer traded that choice, along with WR DJ Moore and other capital, to the Chicago Bears in the transaction to obtain Young.

Carolina went 14-37 in three seasons with Fitterer making moves, quite a few which haven’t panned out – including trades for players like QBs Baker Mayfield and Sam Darnold and CB C.J. Henderson. Including Young, high-end draft picks made by Fitterer – including CB Jaycee Horn, WR Terrace Marshall Jr., LT Ickey Ekwonu and WR Jonathan Mingo – have yet to mature into foundational players.

The New York Giants are making changes to their coaching staff, though not at the top.

The team fired special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey and offensive line coach Bobby Johnson, according to multiple reports.

McGaughey had been with the team for six seasons.

Giants coach Brian Daboll said earlier Monday morning that he expects to retain offensive coordinator Mike Kafka and defensive coordinator Wink Martindale.

The Falcons didn’t wait long to part with Arthur Smith after a season-ending debacle against the New Orleans Saints.

Smith was fired just after midnight, with team owner Arthur Blank making clear his intention to turn the page after three straight 7-10 seasons.

Blank did not issue any specific mandate to Smith entering Year 3, but he did make clear he expected to see progress in the win column. Instead, the Falcons fell short of their first winning season since 2017.

2024-01-08 14:37:30
#Latest #coach #firings #league


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