Changing of guard: Not surprisingly, NFL coaches get ax on Black Monday

01/06/16 by Matthew S. Vandriak



The Monday following the NFL regular season has become known as "Black Monday" since it is the day where the rumors of coaches on the hot seat become coaches being fired. This year, three coaches met their demise on Black Monday, while a fourth was terminated the week before the season ended. Let's take a look at the open jobs as of right now.
The Philadelphia Eagles were the first team to say goodbye to their coach, and they didn't bother waiting until the offseason. The Eagles let coach Chip Kelly go the week before their season finale. Despite back to back 10 win seasons and a 26 and 21 overall record, Kelly was sent packing a season after trading LeSean McCoy, signing DeMarco Murray, cutting DeSean Jackson, allowing Jeremy Maclin to leave via free agency, and trading Nick Foles for Sam Bradford. Kelly's offense wasn't in sync at all this season, and perhaps him being given control of player personnel was too much for Kelly to be able to handle.
After 12 seasons and 2 Super Bowl wins, the Tom Coughlin era came to an end in New York. Originally it was thought Coughlin would retire, but instead he decided to resign as Giants head coach. Injuries and blown 4th quarter leads were the undoing of the Giants this season, and ultimately, the undoing of Coughlin as head coach. Coughlin though has not ruled out coaching again elsewhere next season.

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One season was enough for management in San Francisco to decide that Jim Tomsula wasn't the right fit as head coach. Tomsula finished 5 and 11 after taking over for Jim Harbaugh. The 49ers were not even close to the team they'd been under Harbaugh. The offensive cornerstones from the Harbaugh era are no more either as Michael Crabtree left via free agency prior to the season, Vernon Davis was traded to Denver, and Colin Kaepernick's time in San Francisco looks to be done as well.
Instead of Black Monday, maybe it should be called Orange and Brown Monday. Because after another unsuccessful season, the Cleveland Browns have decided to blow things up again. Head coach Mike Pettine and General Manger Ray Farmer were both fired after two seasons. Maybe one of these days Browns ownership will realize you can't change the blue print every couple of seasons if you expect to be successful in the NFL? That might explain why their starting quarterback to playoff appearance ratio since returning to the league in 1999 is at 25 to 1.
There are still jobs open in Miami and Tennessee as well, where interim coaches Dan Campbell and Mike Mularkey will have the opportunity to take over on a permanent basis. The biggest surprise may be that Chuck Pagano signed a four year contract extension in Indianapolis despite rumors that he would be let go.
There are still other coaches on the hot seat and other rumored changes that could be in the works. So it's safe to say, this years coaching carousel is more than likely just beginning to turn.

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