No More Mr. Nice Guy- More Changes To Come?

Posted on November 17, 2009 by Patrick Moran

He’ll go down as one of the nicest guys to ever walk a Buffalo Bills sideline. Unfortunately for Dick Jauron, he’ll also be remembered as one of the worst, and least popular coach’s in franchise history.

Ralph Wilson mercifully put an end to masses of fan’s wrath Tuesday afternoon with the announcement that Jauron has been fired. Perry Fewell will take over as the interim head coach according to many outlets, including Tim Graham from ESPN.

Ralph Wilson released the following statement Tuesday afternoon.

“I am announcing today that I am relieving Dick Jauron from his duties as our head coach, effectively immediately,” said Wilson in a team statement. “I have tremendous respect for Dick and thank him for all of his efforts during these past four years. While this was a very difficult decision, I felt that it is one that needed to be made at this time for the best interest of our team. We will now focus on moving forward and preparing for our game this week in Jacksonville.”

“”I really don’t have anything to say,” was all Jauron would say when reached on his cell phone by The Associated Press. It’s the only comment we’ve heard from Jauron at this time.

Adam Schefter of ESPN said Jauron was “blindsided” by the move.

The move also apparently blindsided the players.  Linebacker Paul Posluszny told ESPN’s Tim Graham that I found out through you,”  “I got a text saying ‘Coach Jauron’s been fired.’ I said ‘I don’t think so.’ So I went to ESPN.com, and I’m looking at your picture right now.”

“Wow. I couldn’t believe it. I haven’t spoken to anybody in the organization or any of my teammates yet.” Posluszny added.

He finishes his career in Buffalo with a 24-33 record. He was the 14th head coach in franchise history

The timing certainly is odd. If Jauron were to be fired this season you’d have expected it to come during the bye week. Buffalo was outscored 22-0 in the fourth quarter in their last game before their bye; a loss to the Houston Texans.

But Jauron was given a reprieve. Sunday, the Bills played Tennessee tough for three quarters before folding in the final 15 minutes, giving up 24 unanswered points en route to an embarrassing 41-17 lead.

Someone with ties to the organization said the breaking point may have come when longtime Buffalo Bills and team leader Aaron Schobel publicly questioned the direction the organization is going in an article by AP writer John Wawrow yesterday.

“It’s embarrassing,” Schobel told Wawrow on Monday, a day after a 41-17 loss at Tennessee dropped Buffalo’s record to 3-6. “I mean, we’re technically, mathematically still in it, I guess, but it’s like what … are we doing here?”

From there, Wilson reportedly talked to a few players and key personnel within the organization and came away feeling the team was “lost, and headed the wrong way.”

Jauron was soon summoned to Detroit following his press conference yesterday afternoon and the decision was later made by Wilson.

It’s very uncommon for Wilson to fire a coach during the season. The last time he did it was in 1986 when he replaced Hank Bullough with Marv Levy. It’s unprecedented for Wilson to fire a coach owing him such a large sum of money. Jauron will be owed more than $6-million, even after his firing.

Anyone remember the hassle Wilson once gave Wade Phillips over $750,000?

Perhaps by coincidence, news leaked out today via NFL.com that Ryan Fitzpatrick would be named the starting quarterback tomorrow with a healthy (albeit lousy) Trent Edwards going to the bench.

Regardless of the circumstance surrounding it, the vast majority fans are happy with the move.

“I’m having a much better day now that Dick Jauron is out of Buffalo. Thank God!!!!!” said Bills fan Chris Chmura.

One fan  went as far to use the firing to take a final swipe at the embattled former coach.

“I wonder if Dick Jauron showed emotion when he was fired or if he just sat there blank faced and clapped.” said Jocelyn Buczek.

Speculation will run wild over the next several weeks on who the Bills might target to take over for 2010. Tony Dungy, Bill Cowher, Mike Holmgren, Jon Gruden and Mike Shanahan are just a few of the more notable big-names out there the Bills could potentially go after.

Of course, giving one of those the gig would almost certainly entail giving up far more control of the football operations, something Wilson has been ardently against since firing Tom Donahoe in 2005.

Perhaps, Jauron’s firing is just the first in a laundry list of changes to come. By making a change now the team has a head start over other franchise’s who’ll be looking for a head coach, and possibly front office personnel.

Injured linebacker Kawika Mitchell hinted via his twitter that Jauron’s axing won’t be the only major move to happen.

“Coach Jauron is gone. I have gr8 deal of respect 4 the man. He was a gr8 player n the NFL and a very good coach. He has a gr8 family and they’ll all b missed. A lot of changes r about to go down. A lot of jobs will b lost and gained. We’ll c how it plays out. “

Other key players of the team claim they remain unified. Donte Whitner twittered “Nothing will break us, we’re tighter than ever!”

We’ll have far more on this in the coming hours as we await word of a press conference and reaction from the players.

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1 Comment on No More Mr. Nice Guy- More Changes To Come?

  1. Web Rumblings: Buffalo Bills Links, 11/18 | Buffalo Bills Blog

    [...] No More Mr. Nice Guy– More Changes To Come? : Buffalo Sports Daily“”I really don’t have anything to say,” was all Jauron would say when reached on his cell phone by The Associated Press. It’s the only comment we’ve heard from Jauron at this time. [...]

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