Four firings seem to be certain

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In this era of non-stop NFL news and analysis, opinions and whispers can quickly harden into fact, when repeated and reiterated and rehashed over a period of days and weeks. With Week 17 here, it’s become a given that four teams will be changing coaches, especially since none of those four teams have attempted, publicly or privately, to push back against outcomes that seem to be certainties.

For four coaches, either they’ll be fired as soon as today or their teams have done a poor job of protecting them against the widespread assumptions/presumptions that they’re done. From Jets coach Todd Bowles to Broncos coach Vance Joseph to Buccaneers coach Dirk Koetter to Cardinals coach Steve Wilks, the sense that they’ll each be fired has become baked in to the NFL news cake.

Again, there’s a chance that one or more of them won’t go. But if that’s the case, whoever stays should be miffed that more (anything) wasn’t done to get those in the media who have been speaking about a firing as a fait accompli to adjust the narrative.

The only statement any of these four teams has issued came from the Jets, not to renew vows with Bowles but to shoot down (or at least try to) a report that they’ll pursue Jim Harbaugh. “Todd Bowles is our coach,” the statement declared, stating the obvious.

The statement didn’t say, “Todd Bowles will be our coach.”

Only one team has reacted to widespread rumor and chatter to make it clear that its head coach will return for 2019. The fact that the Ravens said so makes the silence from the Jets, Broncos, Bucs, and Cardinals even more deafening.

And so, when that silence is broken as soon as this afternoon, there’s currently no reason to think that the end result will be four fresh vacancies to go with the other two that emerged during the season. At a time when everyone is looking for a surprise, the biggest surprise would be if Bowles, Joseph, Koetter, or Wilks are still employed when the ball drops in Times Square on Monday night.

46 responses to “Four firings seem to be certain

  1. This offseason, no NFL team is going to make a run at either Jim or John Harbaugh. This should be obvious.

  2. So do these coaches coach hard for their next job, or tank and say FU to their current teams? Some won’t be able to control it, but a couple should be able to.

  3. Cardinals need to fire Steve Keim more than get a new coach after one year. He’s the root of the talent drop off, and i’d reach out to Scot McCloughan as he has experience building winners in the NFC West. He’s helped every where he’s been (49ers, Seahawks, Redskins, Browns)

  4. Thanx Mike. My day is always best when I start it out by reading someone else is certain to be fired. I don’t know why, guess it’s sorta like the smell of napalm in the morning, ya know?

  5. Don’t count out John Harbaugh yet. If he loses to the Browns today by a lopsided score the fans will be screaming for his head.

  6. Wilks might one day be a productive head coach, but he is not at this point so the Cards need to fire him and Keim.
    Wilks did not have the experience and knowledge to correct a bad offensive coordinator and bad offense.
    Keim has performed poorly on his draft choices, signing FAs and UFAs, and maintaining talented players on the roster.
    They both must go as the Cards simply cannot afford a repeat season residing in the bottom of the NFL.

  7. When the firings come for DC’s, as a Chiefs fan I hope Bob Sutton will be the 1st to go! His philosophy of bend don’t break and give up fg’s instead of td’s is bs. Why not work on 3 and outs!

  8. Always have at least one surprise firing on black Monday.

    If the Vikings lose today and miss the playoffs for the 2nd time in 3 yrs, Zimmer could be gone. Doubt it though. He is safe. That franchise accepts failure and is used to it.

  9. chief4ever says:
    December 30, 2018 at 9:37 am
    When the firings come for DC’s, as a Chiefs fan I hope Bob Sutton will be the 1st to go! His philosophy of bend don’t break and give up fg’s instead of td’s is bs. Why not work on 3 and outs!
    As a Pats fan I feel your pain, bend don’t break has been our motto for 10+ years. But we’ve also won A LOT of games, it’s just frustrating to watch defensively. And while you’re upset at this approach, the Chiefs are #1 in the AFC so….

  10. They give Dirk Jameis Winston and Ryan Fitzpatrick(dude had 7 turnovers in a single game 2 years ago) and expect him to field a competitive team? Plus, the Bucs are a annual dumpster fire organization with just a few years of success over the past 40 seasons. I hope Dirk gets a better chance with a much better owner/org next time around.

  11. “Always have at least one surprise firing on black Monday”

    Hopefully it’s Matt Patricia. Dude single handedly destroyed this season before it begin. He is awful.

  12. Bucs G.M. Jason Licht will also be fired. He should have been 3 years ago trading up in the second round to get a kicker. Dumb.

  13. I feel bad for Wilks. I don’t know if he’s a good coach or not, but I hate when a coach is fired after one year or when they have a rookie quarterback. A lot of times it will then screw up the quarterback’s career. Arizona should remember what happened to Matt Leinart after they fired Denny Green. Whisenhunt didn’t want anything to do with him and his career never went anywhere.

  14. as much as people cap on John Harbaugh, (and yes, deservedly so for his whining and tattle tale MO), I give him credit for adapting and adjusting this year from Jump Ball Joe to LJax. A complete 180 from chucking the ball all over the lot, to a throwback to Running game not seen in decades in the NFL.
    This speaks to a coach utilizing his players to high-lite and leverage their skill sets….something we’ve seen avoided for so long for fear of not following NFL level football coaching standard operating procedures to avoid second guessing and criticism.

  15. Wholesale changes can make a difference but to me it starts with the GM and the talent they draft. If it isn’t up to par there isn’t much a coach can do.

    One of the main reasons Pete Caroll is a coach of the year candidate this year is because he had Chris Carson, Tre Flowers, Ted Thomson and a buch of other LATE round guys who have the abilities to actually get “coached up” by a great coach. The Seahawks are full of late round talent playing at a high level…higher than many picked before them.

    I guess what I’m saying is John Schneider and Pete Carroll need each other equally to be as successful as they are. Symbiotic relationship. Without the great GM the coach looks bad…without the great coach the GM looks bad.

    The players need them both to help make them champions. Everyone needs each other in football. Total team sport.

    The head coach is just one of the pieces to success.

  16. There should be other people on this list too. Adam Gase, Marvin Lewis, Dan Quinn, Mike Tomlin should not feel their job is secure. If John Harbaugh won’t sign an extension with a pay cut, he should be fired too. And if Dan Snyder had a clue, Jay Gruden would be let go also.

  17. Brown’s should fire Gregg William’s if they lose to Baltimore. Hire a proven head coach, like John Fox.

  18. It’s sad to see reports that Tomlin’s job is safe yet again.
    He has failed this team miserably. The culture in Pittsburgh stinks.
    Tomlin has never been held accountable and thus he doesn’t hold his players accountable.
    No one has done less with more talent. Wasting them year by year.

  19. Child please, enjoy your Philbin experience. My front door has more personality than that guy.

    We’re more than happy with Zimmer in Minnesota.

  20. Many of us never liked the Vance Joseph hire as HC in the first place. He just was not a proven coach for HC. He was not good at all as DC in Miami. He also looks lost when the camera is on him after something negative happens. Joe needs to go back to coaching the defensive backs and get a better defensive mind in here. The chemistry is not there and there is no fixing that. Better luck elsewhere VJ. Bill Musgrave needs to go too, just not clicking with the talent here.

  21. As a 49ers fan..I’m starting to have my doubts about Kyle Shanahan!! I realize he’s not getting fired this year, but needs to prove that he can lead a team to a 500 record at least; regardless of player injuries!!

  22. Vance Joseph deserves to be fired the most out of all these head coaches, did the team with rookie QB’s really think they were going to contend. The Browns should keep the Williams.

  23. someone is going to have to explain to me how, mike maccagnan, the gm of the jets gets to stay…he just gave 20m guaranteed to a wr that played in only 11 games the past two seasons & his prized free agent acquisition of 2017 (trumaine johnson) is a healthy scratch today. this guy stinks.

  24. If we do not go FAR in the POs, PLEASE add Jason Garrett (& Scott Linehan handcuffed to him) to that list 🙂

  25. Gase has to go, team has underachieved greatly. Tannehill needs to go as well, it’s time for a “re-tool” in South Beach.

  26. I’m waiting to see if the Falcons just fire Sarkisian or if he drags Quinn down with him?

    If Quinn made the decision to hire him IMHO he should go also! Who in their right mind ever thought hiring a OC that’d NEVER called a play in the NFL was a good idea to run such a high octane offense? It’s pretty clear absolutely no thought when into that decision!

  27. @ dlux36

    I don’t know that this is the year you want to be searching for a QB, it’s a razor thin QB class and the only FA’s that’ll be out there is other teams trash so you might get exactly what you’re getting rid of or worse!

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