Barely 12 hours after the NFL’s regular season ended, five head coaches found themselves unemployed.
Washington’s Mike Shanahan, Detroit’s Jim Schwartz, Minnesota’s Leslie Frazier and Tampa Bay’s Greg Schiano were fired on Monday while the Cleveland Browns did not even wait that long, dismissing Rob Chudzinski on Sunday night after just one season on the job.
Shanahan, who won two Super Bowls in Denver in the 1990s, spent four seasons with the Redskins and was 24-40.
Frazier had a little more than three seasons with the Vikings to compile an 18-33-1 mark, and Schwartz coached the Lions for five seasons, finishing 29-52.
Schiano only got two years with the Buccaneers, going 11-21.
He had three years and $9 million left on his contract.
Tampa Bay also fired general manager Mark Dominik.
Shanahan had one season remaining on a five-year contract worth about $7 million a season.
He blamed salary cap restraints for part of the Redskins’ collapse from NFC East champion in 2012 to 3-13 and eight consecutive losses.
Washington was hit with a $36 million salary cap penalty over two seasons for dumping salaries into the 2010 uncapped season, and Shanahan said it prevented the team from pursuing free agents it had targeted.
But his real undoing, along with the poor records in three of his four seasons, was a contentious relationship with star quarterback Robert Griffin III.
Frazier took over for Brad Childress in Minnesota for the final six games of 2010.
He got the Vikings to the playoffs as a wild card last season, riding an MVP year from running back Adrian Peterson.
But he never solved the Vikings’ quarterback situation with three QBs started in 2013.
The defence, his speciality, also remained suspect and ranked 31st overall and against the pass.
The Buccaneers, who also have fired the likes of Tony Dungy and Jon Gruden, hired Schiano out of Rutgers in 2012 and went 6-4 before losing five of their last six games.
They dropped their first eight games this season and finished 4-12.
The Lions were considered an underachieving team the last two years under Schwartz.
After a 6-3 start this year in a division where the Packers and Bears lost their starting quarterbacks for lengthy periods, Detroit fell apart down the stretch. It lost six of its last seven.
He had two years and almost $12 million remaining on his deal, signed after the Lions hired him to fix a team that went 0-16 in 2008.
Whoever gets hired in each place will face mammoth rebuilding projects.
Overall, the six teams seeking new coaches went 24-71-1.