With the conclusion of the Wild Card round of the NFL playoffs, a fury of coaching decisions was made across the league. While some teams elected to retain certain coaches, other club executives weren’t so gracious.
So, who’s in and who’s out? Let’s take a closer look.
Eagles Fire HC Doug Pederson
Three seasons after leading the Philadelphia Eagles to its first Super Bowl championship in franchise history, head coach Doug Pederson is now unemployed.
Team owner Jeffrey Lurie further detailed his decision to part ways with Pederson during a press conference on Monday. Pederson coached the Eagles for the last five seasons.
“My first allegiance is, what will be best for the Philadelphia Eagles and our fans for the next three, four, five years. It’s not based on does someone deserve to hold their job or deserve to get fired; that’s a different bar,” Lurie said.
According to reports, Lurie said the Eagles are interested in interviewing former running back and current assistant coach Deuce Staley. The team has also requested an interview with Dallas Cowboys OC Kellen Moore as Pederson’s replacement.
Jaguars Hire Urban Meyer as HC
The Jacksonville Jaguars have hired former Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer to be the team’s next head coach. According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Meyer had been assembling a team of coaches prior to accepting the position with the Jags.
“I’m ready to coach the Jacksonville Jaguars. [The team] has an enthusiastic fan base, and the fans deserve a winning team. With upcoming opportunities in the NFL Draft, and strong support from ownership, the Jaguars are well-positioned to become competitive,” Meyer said in a statement.
As a college head coach, Meyer compiled a 187-32 record and won three national champions — two with the Florida Gators (2006, 2008) and one with Buckeyes (2014). During his seven seasons at Ohio State, Meyer had an 83-9 record. He is replacing head coach Doug Marrone, whom team owner Shad Khan fired on Jan. 4.
Jets Hire NFL’s First Muslim Head Coach, Robert Saleh
The New York Jets Thursday evening announced the team had hired San Francisco 49ers defensive coordinator Robert Saleh to be their new head coach, making him the first Muslim at the helm of an NFL franchise.
During his first two seasons with the 49ers, the team ranked 24th and 13th in total defense and dead last in total yards surrendered in 2017. Over the last two seasons, however, the 49ers ranked second and fifth under his leadership.
Saleh, whose family’s roots can be traced to Lebanon, will be the NFL’s third Arab American head coach, following in the footsteps of Abe Gibran and Rich Kotite.
Seahawks Fire OC Brian Schottenheimer
The Seattle Seahawks have fired OC Brian Schottenheimer following the team’s embarrassing wild card playoff loss to the Los Angeles Rams last weekend.
“Brian Schottenheimer is a fantastic person and coach and we thank him for the last three years,” the Seahawks said in a statement Tuesday night. “Citing philosophical differences, we have parted ways.”
Team executives felt the Seahawks’ productivity had stalled under Schottenheimer’s watch, especially during the second half of the 2020 season. During their final three games, Seattle failed to reach 300 total yards and gained just 278 total yards in their 30-20 loss to the Rams.
Falcons Offer HC Job to Titans’ OC Arthur Smith
The Atlanta Falcons have made an offer to Tennessee Titans OC Arthur Smith to begin the team’s new head coach, according to ESPN’s Dianna Russini.
Smith will replace former HC Dan Quinn, who was fired in October after the Falcons started the season 0-5. Atlanta’s DC Raheem Morris took over as interim head coach and led the team to a 4-7 record.
Bears Will Retain HC Matt Nagy
Despite the Chicago Bears second straight 8-8 season and an early exit in the playoffs, the team has decided to retain HC Matt Nagy, along with GM Ryan Pace, league sources reported.
Nagy will return for his fourth season with the Bears, which has finished at the bottom of the league over the last two seasons. Chicago’s struggles have come on the heels of a 2018 NFC North championship and a 12-4 campaign.
While Nagy will be back for the 2021 season, defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano will not. He announced his retirement from coaching after 36 seasons at both the NFL and collegiate levels.