Jeff Fisher downplays talk of contract extension


Saturday night’s ESPN all-hands-on-deck extravaganza from the L.A. Coliseum included a perfunctory news nugget regarding the home team. And the news was that coach Jeff Fisher and G.M. Les Snead are likely to get new contracts before the 2016 regular-season begins.

It was the latest chapter in the contract-talks-are-happening story, which first emerged in February. And it’s not a surprise that the goal would be to get the deals done sooner than later, since Fisher and Snead are both entering the final year of their deals.

Ask about the situation during a Sunday press conference, Fisher sidestepped the topic.

“I don’t know where those reports came from and I’ve never gone into the details regarding my own personal situation,” Fisher said. “I haven’t talked to Adam Schefter or anybody, so we’ll see what happens.”

Assuming the reports (which originated with ESPN more than six months ago) are accurate, the delayed consummation suggests that there are hurdles or hangups, or simply a lack of mutual urgency. On one hand, it makes plenty of sense for owner Stan Kroenke to keep Fisher in place at least for the next three years, given his experience in shepherding the Oilers through a nomadic stretch after a move from Houston to Tennessee. On the other hand, Kroenke may now be inclined to consider loading up the cash cannon and aiming for the very top of the “A” list. If Fisher doesn’t sign a new deal, Kroenke can do that in January, without a buyout obligation.

While the team played in St. Louis, Kroenke didn’t seem to have the same obsession with winning that other owners routinely display. Since moving, however, Kroenke has seemed to become more interest in achieving better outcomes on the field. It could be that Kroenke is driving a harder bargain than expected in the lingering talks, which could force the current regime to bet on itself in 2016 in order to truly cash in come 2017.

In 2012, Fisher signed a five-year, $35 million contract to join the Rams. Without knowing the offers and counteroffers, it’s hard to know whether the two sides will be able to get a deal done. If a deal gets done, the precise terms will say a lot about whether it’s a genuine long-term commitment or a Band-Aid aimed at giving both sides a chance to assess whether it makes sense to continue the relationship following a move from Missouri to California.

31 responses to “Jeff Fisher downplays talk of contract extension

  1. Why does the media continue to mention Fisher’s experience in overseeing a team that has changed cities? Is that more important than wins? He is the only coach I have ever know of who gets credit for things outside of what an NFL coach is supposed to do, “WIN!” This guy has had one great ride…Being employed by two owners who have no concern for winning titles.

  2. He helped coach the Titans to play in a SB after moving the Oilers against… the St. Louis Rams. Maybe LA is hoping for a little bit of that magic to come back around.

    While there are better options at coach, the Rams are just trying to ease into the LA scene, besides a coach isn’t going to put people in the seats.

    Maybe when they get the new stadium ready they will try to make the “Home Run” hire at coach. I feel that Fisher was brought in with the owner knowing the team was going to move, as he has gone through it before and I believe the move was made after his 3rd season as HC for Houston as well, so maybe they feel he can help players adjust to the change of scene. He also tends to get young QBs off to steady starts with players like Steve McNair and Vince Young.

  3. Extending one of the worst coaches in NFL history? Really?

    I’d wait until he notches at least 10 regular season wins for your team.

    20 full time years of head coaching with only 2 teams (so not a lot of rebuilding from someone else’s mess and he only has 6 years over .500 and none of them have been with this team. This team has been 7,7,6,7 wins and you want to extend him ???

  4. How does a guy who only had 6 winning seasons out of 16 with the Titans, get a 5 year $35 million contract, and not have a single winning season in the 4 years since, and the team is going to sign him to an extension?


  5. Surprised not see his record with Rams mentioned in this story. 27-36-1, no playoff appearances, never better than third in division.

  6. The longest tenured mediocre coach in the league is set to cash in on mediocrity once again.

  7. Have to give him credit, he struck gold when he took that Ram job, the rich get richer again…he’s the Peter Gibbons (Office Space) of Pro Football…

  8. The contract should be all about mediocrity. League average pay (no bonuses), catering plain white bread and butter sandwiches, Honda Civic, $11 haircuts, you name it.

  9. Last guy in the world who should be getting an extension. With the talent they gave him over the past few years and the way this team played I’m more shocked he is still there let alone an extension.

  10. Stan Kroenke is more committed to making money than he is in putting a winning product on the field. Just ask Avalanche, Nuggets, and Arsenal fans.

  11. StanK needs to hurry and sign this guy! I’m sure his phone is ringing off the hook. Perpetual Rebuilding!!

  12. I really don’t understand how this guy keeps a coaching job. What has he ever won? Had a couple of good years in Tennessee, but that is it. In 21 yrs his record is 169 wins and 156 losses with 5-6 record in the playoffs.

  13. He should be let to leave just for the fact he wasted all of those picks from the RG3 trade just to turn around and do the same thing himself a few years later.

  14. Please extend the coach who has his rookie QB who can’t even handle a snap or run a huddle participate in yoga over training camp. Please Kroenke.

  15. Perfectly executed plan, Kroenke. Keep a mediocre (at absolute best) coach long enough to disappoint and disenfranchise the St. Louis fanbase, easing the backlash on the move to L.A. Then, once established in your new city, replace the coach to excite the new fanbase with promises of the future. Classic move.

  16. It would be a terrible idea to extend him right before the season. At least wait until the middle of the season so you know how he’s doing… This just sets them up for regret.

  17. Steeler fans hope Jeff Fisher gets a Lifetime Contract so they can continue to brag about Bill Cahhhhhrrrr breaking Fisher’s leg in 1983

  18. How does this clown convince people to pay him for the work he does.

    He is far and away the most over rated coach in NFL history.

    “but he almost won a superbowl that one year”…..

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