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NFL coaching tracker 2018: Updates, latest news and rumors on firings and hires

We’ve already seen one NFL coach fired this year and with Black Monday right around the corner, you can expect several other coaches around the league to be handed a pink slip after the regular season comes to an end on Sunday. 

As things stand, Colts coach Chuck Pagano and Bears coach John Fox are two of the coaches who will almost certainly be joining Ben McAdoo in the unemployment line over the next 24 hours. 

If we’ve learned one thing about NFL owners over the past few years, it’s that they don’t waste anytime anymore when it comes to firing a coach. In the past, many owners would wait until the Monday following the season to make a move, but that’s no longer the case, which means you can probably expect the ax to start following as soon as the first slate of games ends on Sunday afternoon. 

To keep you up-to-date on the latest firings, rumors and possible hirings, here’s our coaching tracker for the 2018 offseason. 


Cincinnati Bengals

Report: Marvin Lewis is out as Bengals coach

It’s been reported since mid-December that Marvin Lewis is done in Cincinnati, something that he has refused to confirm for the past two weeks. Although Lewis hasn’t come out and said that Sunday is going to be his last game, it’s become pretty clear. The Bengals coach wouldn’t even make a promise to be at his normal press conference on Monday. 

The Bengals will likely go after a candidate their familiar with, which could mean hiring from within — in the form of defensive coordinator Paul Guenther or special team coordinator Darrin Simmons — and it wouldn’t be surprising if they go after Browns’ coach Hue Jackson if he becomes available. 

Cleveland Browns

Report: Hue Jackson is safe

Browns owner Jimmy Haslam already promised Hue Jackson that he would be returning for 2018, and he seems to be standing by that promise. After the Browns lost to the Steelers 28-24 on Sunday to fall to 0-16, Haslam once again reiterated his support for Jackson, who is now 1-31 in two years with the Browns.

The only question now is whether or not Haslam actually sticks to his word over the next few days. With the hiring of new general manager John Dorsey, it wouldn’t be a shock to see Dorsey convince Haslam that it would make way more sense for Dorsey to hire his own coach.

Denver Broncos

Report: Vance Joseph could be done in Denver

It’s hard to believe that Broncos would fire Joseph after just one season, but that could happen if his team gets blown out on Sunday by a bunch of Chiefs’ backups. According to Pro Football Talk, Joseph will likely be coaching for his job against Kansas City. The problem for Joseph this year isn’t that the Broncos have been bad, it’s that there have been several games where they haven’t even been competitive. The Broncos have four losses by 20 or more points, which is more than the 0-15 Browns, who have only lost one game by 20 or more points.  

Indianapolis Colts

Fired: Chuck Pagano is out

Pagano has been on the hot seat pretty much every offseason for the past few years and it looks like whatever goodwill he had with owner Jim Irsay has finally run out. The Colts fired Pagano on Sunday, per WISH-TV and further reported by multiple outlets, less than 90 minutes after the team’s 22-13 win over the Texans. It’s not a shock that Pagano is out: Between the botched Andrew Luck situation and the team’s 4-12 record, Irsay really didn’t have much of a choice. To replace him, it would make the most sense for the Colts to bring in an offensive-minded coach to lead a team that should be led by Luck, assuming he finally makes it back from his injury. La Canfora lists Chiefs offensive coordinator Matt Nagy as a potential replacement who makes sense. 

Oakland Raiders

Report: Raiders making a run at Jon Gruden

One year after ending the Raiders’ 13-season playoff drought, it looks like Jack Del Rio is already on the hot seat in Oakland and could be out as soon as this week. According to ESPN.com, the Raiders have made a coaching offer to Gruden that would include an ownership stake in the team. Raiders owner Mark Davis didn’t exactly deny the story when he was asked about it on Saturday. 

Although Gruden has turned down every coaching offer for the past eight years, this could be the one that finally gets him out of the booth. However, if Gruden does reject the Raiders, the team is expected to keep Del Rio, which could make things a little awkward going forward. 

Houston Texans

Report: Bill O’Brien is at odds with general manager Rick Smith, but will stay in Houston for 2018

Although Bill O’Brien and Rick Smith reportedly have a “toxic” relationship, that doesn’t look like it’s going to be an issue going forward. The Texans announced on Sunday that Smith will be taking a leave of absence to help care for his wive, who was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. With Smith out of the picture for now, the Houston Chronicle reports that O’Brien will “definitely” be returning to the Texans in 2018. This is good news for Deshaun Watson, who recently made it clear in a tweet that he wants the team bring O’Brien back next season. 

Tennessee Titans

Report: Mike Mularkey could get fired if the Titans lose to the Jaguars

The Titans are in the middle of one of the greatest collapses in NFL history and it’s a collapse that could cost Mularkey his job. After Week 13, the Titans were sitting at 8-4 and seemed like a lock for the postseason. However, since then, they’ve lost three straight and they could be kept out of the playoffs altogether if they lose to the Jaguars on Sunday. Not helping things is the fact that Marcus Mariota has seeminly regressed this season, which could lead the Titans to go after a coach who could do a potentially better job of developing him. According to NFL.com, a win on Sunday might not even save Mularkey’s job. The team might also let him go if the Titans go one-and-done in the playoffs. 


Chicago Bears

Report: John Fox is done

After three straight seasons of not topping the six-win mark, it looks like the Bears have finally had enough of John Fox. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora has reported that it’s a “virtual certainty” that Fox will be let go after the season. With the team hoping to develop quarterback Mitchell Trubisky, La Canfora reports that the Bears will likely consider offensive-minded coaches like Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and Vikings OC Pat Shurmur 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Report: Dirk Koetter isn’t going anywhere

Although there had been rumors that Jon Gruden might be a candidate for this job, it looks like Koetter will definitely be sticking around for at least one more season. The family that owns the Bucs told Koetter on Friday that he’ll be retained for at least the 2018 season. According to NFL.com, the Bucs went after Gruden and got rebuffed, which is likely why they gave Koetter a vote of confidence out of nowhere on Friday. 

Arizona Cardinals

Report: Bruce Arians is leaning toward retirement after this season

After a highly successful coaching career with the Cardinals, it seems that Bruce Arians is leaning toward retirement. According to ESPN.com, Arians hasn’t formally announced his plans to the team because he’s not 100 percent sure he’s going to retire. The Cardinals coach plans to talk with his wife following the team’s game against the Seahawks on Sunday. Arians has had some health scares over the years — including two hospital trips in 2016 — which might be one reason why the 65-year-old is ready to call it quits. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora reported in early December that Arians was leaning toward retirement and that the team began making “internal preparations” for his departure at the time. 

Dallas Cowboys

Report: Jason Garrett isn’t going anywhere

Unless Jerry Jones has a sudden change of heart, it looks like Jason Garrett’s job is safe in Dallas. During a radio interview the day after Christmas, the Cowboys owner said that he would be keeping Garrett for the 2018 season. “I certainly know a lot about Jason Garrett. Because of that, I can quickly and candidly say his job is not an issue here, at all,” Jones said on Tuesday. “It’s not in the best interest of the Cowboys to be considering a coaching change.”

Considering everything that Garrett had to deal with this year — from the injuries to the Ezekiel Elliott situation — it’s no surprise that Garrett is sticking around, especially when you consider that the Cowboys are coming off a 13-3 season in 2016. 

New York Giants

Report: Coaching search is on

Now that Dave Gettleman has officially been hired as general manager, the Giants can start the process of looking for the coach who’s going to replace Ben McAdoo. CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Canfora has reported that one dark horse candidate could be Steelers offensive line coach Mike Munchak, who served as the Titans head coach from 2011 thru 2013. Gettleman was formerly with the Panthers, so it wouldn’t be a shock if Carolina defensive coordinator Steve Wilks is on Gettleman’s list of coaches to interview for the Giants’ job. The Giants will also look at other coordinators like Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz and Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels. 

Detroit Lions

Report: Jim Caldwell is going to be fired

In what might go down as the most surprising firing of the upcoming offseason, NFL.com reports that Caldwell is “expected to coach his last game” on Sunday. If the Lions win on Sunday and Caldwell gets fired, that would mean the team decided to let him go despite two playoff appearances in four years and three seasons above .500. To put Caldwell’s performance in perspective, if the Lions go 9-7, it would mark the first time since 1994-97 that they had three winning seasons in four years. A win over Green Bay would also mark the first time since 1991 that the Lions have swept the Packers. Despite all that, Caldwell doesn’t sound like a guy who would be shocked if he got fired. 

“That’s part of our business,” Caldwell said Wednesday, via the Detroit News. “That’s kind of the way it goes. That’s every year, right? I told you guys a story a long time ago about Marty Schottenheimer. He got fired at 14-2. So, anything less than a Super Bowl, obviously it could happen.”

Washington Redskins

Report: Jay Gruden’s job is safe 

One team that won’t be looking for a new head coach this offseason is the Washington Redskins. According to NFL.com, the Redskins plan on keeping Gruden going forward. Of course, the downside of this for Gruden is that he’ll likely open the 2018 season on the hot seat. Since taking over the Redskins’ job in 2014, he’s posted a 28-34-1 record with one playoff appearance, although he has had to deal with the annual offseason drama that the Kirk Cousins situation has turned into. If, for some reason, Redskins owner Daniel Snyder were to change his mind and dump Gruden, the Redskins coach would instantly become a top candidate for the Bengals’ job. 

John Breech

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