The Chiefs hoped to be getting ready for the Super Bowl this week, but they’ll be thinking about a new defensive coordinator instead.
The team announced on Tuesday that they have fired Bob Sutton. The news comes two days after the Chiefs lost 37-31 to the Patriots in overtime of the AFC Championship Game and one day after head coach Andy Reid stopped well short of ruling out a change at the top of the defensive coaching staff.
“Bob is a good football coach and a great person,” Reid said in a statement. “He played an integral role in the success of our team over the last six seasons. I’ve said before that change can be a good thing, for both parties, and I believe that is the case here for the Chiefs and Bob. This was not an easy decision, but one I feel is in the best interest of the Kansas City Chiefs moving forward.”
Given those reports, it’s no surprise that the Chiefs have made the move. It’s also not a surprise given the performance.
While the Chiefs were the top seed in the AFC, they ranked at or near the bottom of the league in many meaningful defensive categories and gave up more first downs than any team in history. With a potent offense, some of that could be swallowed but the Chiefs routinely failed to come up with stops when they needed them the most.
The Patriots’ game-winning touchdown drive saw them convert three third-and-10s stands as the most recent example and, perhaps, the one that sealed Sutton’s fate in Kansas City.