Buffalo Bills Fire Dick Jauron, Perry Fewell Expected Interim Replacement
by Trevor Whenham - 11/17/2009
The Buffalo Bills need to stop the bleeding in a hurry during this ugly season, so they have taken the obvious first step - they have fired head coach Dick Jauron after a 3-6 start. The interim replacement is expected to be defensive coordinator Perry Fewell. Jauron was reportedly caught totally off guard by the move, but given the Bills' play this year it was inevitable, and that that was at question was the timing.
The final straw for Jauron was his team's last quarter collapse against Tennessee on Sunday. Tied at 17 and looking solid going into the final period, Buffalo allowed 24 unanswered points and played the sloppiest, most disinterested football possible.
Jauron, who has also been a head coach at Chicago and in Detroit on an interim basis, finishes his stint in Buffalo with a 24-33 record. That makes his career mark 60-82. Given that Jauron is already 59, and that he just isn't that great of a coach, this is likely the end of the line for him in the NFL as a head coach.
The problems for this season started early. Expectations were reasonably high after the team gambled by singing Terrell Owens to take pressure off of Lee Evans. That dynamic one-two punch never really had time to gel because Owens was injured for much of training camp, and then the Bills fired offensive coordinator Turk Schonert right before the season started. The offense has predictably struggled since, averaging just 15.6 points per game under new coordinator Alex Van Pelt. Jauron took a risk replacing Schonert and it didn't pay off, so he had to pay the price.
This will be Fewell's first time in charge of a team. Before joining Buffalo he was the defensive backs coach for the Bears, and he previously served in St. Louis and Jacksonville. He worked under Jauron in Jacksonville prior to joining him in Buffalo, so you can expect a similar approach to the game from Fewell. Fewell has done a good job coaching his defense against the pass this year - they rank ninth in the league. Unfortunately, they are dead last against the run, and that has been the cause of many of the team's problems. Fewell will have less time to address that as he also attends to head coaching duties, so it's hard to imagine a significant improvement for the team this year.
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