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Four NFL head coaches fired on ‘Black Monday’

By David Harten

This article was published December 30, 2013 at 4:17 p.m.


Former Washington Redskins head coach Mike Shanahan delivers a statement at an NFL football news conference after being fired, Monday in Ashburn, Va. Shanahan is one of six coaches that have been fired so far this year after having underwhelming seasons.

A total of six head coaches have been fired as of Monday afternoon, the first day of the NFL offseason for 20 teams in the league and a day commonly referred to as “Black Monday” in professional football circles.

The Washington Redskins, Detroit Lions, Minnesota Vikings and Tampa Bay Buccaneers all announced the firing of their head coaches on Monday. The Cleveland Browns wasted even less time by announcing the firing of first-year coach Rob Chudzinski on Sunday night.

The first firing of an NFL head coach of 2013 happened several weeks ago, with Gary Kubiak seeing the end of his run as coach of the Houston Texans in the midst of the team finishing the season on a 14-game losing streak.

The highest profile of all the firings came in Washington, as two-time Super Bowl-winning coach Mike Shanahan was let go after four seasons with the team. The former Denver Broncos coach went to the playoffs in 2012 after leading the Redskins to a 10-6 record and an NFC East Division title. Washington finished the 2013 season 3-13.

Three of the four coaches fired on Monday made the playoffs in the past two seasons, including Shanahan, Minnesota’s Leslie Frazier (2012) and Detroit’s Jim Schwartz (2011). However, all three failed to finish this season with winning records. Tampa Bay let go of second-year coach Greg Schiano after an 11-20 record in two seasons with the team.

In his one season with the Browns, Chudzinski went 4-12.

Read Tuesday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for more details.

Comments on: Four NFL head coaches fired on ‘Black Monday’

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Fdworfe says... December 30, 2013 at 6:10 p.m.

Not being a professional football fan, I have poor license to question sports phenomena that I’ve never really understood. Maybe someone can explain it, and maybe I’m not the only one on the planet who finds a few things about professional games to be totally out of kilter with common sense. Why can we not enjoy a game without getting upset at a loss? Why is it not emotionally acceptable that someone or some team has to lose? OK, so it’s the money, you say. If it’s only a money matter, why do we keep pretending that professional game playing is some kind of sport? Last but not least—and believe me, I’ve tried to enjoy, to become engrossed in professional “sports”—how do people get so wrapped up in this strictly money business that year after year concusses the brains of these modern-day gridiron gladiators beyond any ability of the medical profession to repair? OK, I do get a glimmer. It really is money. It has to be. No other force on earth could be so dumb and be so popular and be so profitable. Maybe I’ve answered my questions. But thanks anyway.

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JSchmedeman says... December 30, 2013 at 8:08 p.m.

Interesting commentary.

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