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The West Press

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Shocking Head Coaching Departures in the NFL World

This year’s coaching changes did not disappoint, with eight head coaching positions available for the upcoming season.
Shocking Head Coaching Departures in the NFL World

Josh McDaniels, Las Vegas Raiders

Josh McDaniels got fired in October for his abysmal tenure in Las Vegas. With a 5-4 record to close out the season and the respect of all of his players, interim head coach, Antonio Pierce, was brought back for the 2024 season. He showed he can face adversity, but we will see how he does next season.

Frank Reich, Carolina Panthers

Frank Reich was the next domino to fall. He was fired only eleven games into his first season with a horrible 1-10 record. He had a solid stretch with the Indianapolis Colts (41-33-1) from 2018-2022 before he was fired. This may be the time we see Reich as a head coach of an NFL team as it is difficult to hire someone when their last coaching position had a .091 winning percentage.

Brandon Staley, Los Angeles Chargers

Brandon Staley was the last coach fired during the regular season. After a 27-point lead blown in the 2023 playoffs, he was put on the hot seat entering 2023. Unfortunately, he did not perform. With a 5-9 record and a 63-21 loss to the Raiders, he was canned the next day.

Arthur Smith, Atlanta Falcons

Arthur Smith became the first victim of “Black Monday” as he was fired during the night after the end of the season. Smith went just 7-10 in each of his three seasons, but with the talent he was given, it wasn’t enough to keep his job. Tight end, Kyle Pitts, was extremely underutilized and quarterback Desmond Ridder was given way too long of a leash.

Ron Rivera, Washington Commanders

While Ron Rivera had some success in Carolina, including a trip to the Super Bowl in 2016, his tenure in Washington was not comparable, to say the least. Hired in 2020, he had a surprise playoff birth, winning the NFC East. While he did win the division, it was with a 7-9 record with a lack of competition in the division. Since then it has been a downhill hill for Rivera. 2022 looked promising with a 7-5 start before going the next four weeks without a win, ending with an 8-8-1 record. Last season was no different with only four total wins. With the change in coaching as well as Dan Snyder selling the team, the organization will have a new look next season.

Mike Vrabel, Tennessee Titans

The next coach to go was Tennessee Titans HC Mike Vrabel. This sent shockwaves through the NFL. while Vrabel was coming off two losing seasons, it was clear to most he was not the problem. Vrabel was not given much to work with in the talent department and has shown his coaching ability in previous seasons. Many of the teams who are looking for a head coach have already begun interviewing Vrabel. Tennessee will hire a former OC for Cincinnati for the upcoming season.

Pete Carroll, Seattle Seahawks

Another surprising departure. After an impressive 2022 campaign including the revival of quarterback Geno Smith, Seattle had a somewhat down year despite the 9-8 record. Despite the down year, Carroll had proven his value as a coach time and time again, including bringing the city their first Super Bowl in 2014. Despite the down year, Carroll had shown no signs of slowing down. That hole will be felt throughout the team, as he had been a constant for the team for nearly a decade and a half.

Bill Belichick, New England Patriots

This was the big one. 24 seasons with the Patriots coming to an end. This one was less of a surprise, as many thought he would leave after the season. After multiple subpar seasons with New England, both parties will be looking for a fresh start in 2024. Belichick will be looking to prove his worth, as his former quarterback Tom Brady won a Super Bowl without Belichick. It has now become a race for Belichick between current coachless teams. 

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About the Writer
Nikos is a sophomore in Journalism 1. He loves sports and hopes to go into sports journalism as a profession, but is currently working at Donatos. He is heavily involved in the broadcasting club. In his free time, he plays basketball and football for fun.

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