For most of us, Black Monday refers to an ugly on the stock exchange. For NFL coaches and assistants that term refers to today, the first day after the regular season ended. 12 teams have qualified for the playoffs so their coaching staffs are safe for now. That leaves 20 teams where the general manager and coaches are in varying degrees of danger of being canned. As I'm typing this reports are coming in about dismissals around the league. For one of the few times this year I can say the Browns are leading the league. The Browns announced last night that GM Phil Savage was fired. They are widely expected to let coach Crennell go today even though he has stated he wants to fight for his job. While I respect the coach's desire to sit down and make his case to stay on, I agree with a quick decision. It is important to quickly get started looking for replacements. Top coaching and general management prospects are not going to sit back and decline other offers waiting to see what the Browns decide to do. Speaking of the Browns, several of their players stepped up and campaigned after yesterday's disgusting loss for the coach to keep his job saying he didn't drop passes and he didn't miss tackles. Ridiculous. If you like your coach so much then you should have played better for him. Speculation is swirling around former Steelers coach Bill Cowher. I could be wrong, but I don't think Cowher is going to take this job. If he does take the job I hope it is not just because he is overwhelmed by the number of dollars involved. I want him hungry for the competition, not reluctantly taking the job because the money is too much to pass up.
Other coaches on the hot seat:
Jets: Eric Mangini - Reportedly already fired.
Bills: Dick Jauron - Fast start followed by poor finish has him in danger.
Jaguars: Jack Del Rio - One of the most disappointing teams. I think he is safe.
Bengals: Marvin Lewis - Only one winning season in 6 years at helm. However, he has a contract for next year and Mike Brown isn't likely to pay him to not coach. Plus they won last three games (admittedly against stumbling teams) so they can pretend there is hope going forward.
Browns: Romeo Crennell - Reportedly already fired. GM also canned.
Broncos: Mike Shannahan - 50/50. Super Bowl victories only provide so much protection. Awful collapse this season could lead to his departure.
Raiders: Tom Cable - Interim coach who was not expected to contend for full time job. However, team has shown improvement and won last couple games. 75% chance of staying.
Chiefs: Herm Edwards - Unless he has embarrassing picture of team owner he is about to be fired.
Eagles: Andy Reid - In playoffs, but if they are bounced in the first round his dismissal would not be surprising.
Cowboys: Wade Phillips - Absolutely destroyed yesterday, but team owner Jerry Jones says there will be no change. Is this the same owner who dumped Jimmy Johnson and Barry Switzer despite Super Bowl victories???
Redskins: Jim Zorn - First year coach should have some rope left. However, late season collapse could have him on the job market.
Packers: Mike McCarthy - Despite a worse record than last year McCarthy should be safe. Aaron Rodgers developed into a good starting in his first season as quarterback. There is optimism going forward.
Lions: Rod Marinelli - 0 - 16 on the season. Reportedly already fired.
Rams: Jim Haslett - Team showed some improvement after mid-season replacement. Not enough. 25% chance of keeping job.