The Atlanta Falcons have announced they've parted ways with now former head coach Mike Smith.
On Black Monday, the day after the NFL regular season came to an end, Smith became the 3rd casualty.
He coached the Falcons for 7 years beginning in 2008. And during that time, the team had quite a bit of success, recording back-to-back winning seasons for the first time in their history. Smith got them into the playoffs 5 times and helped guide them within a touchdown of a Super Bowl berth.
But the past two seasons haven't been as kind as the Falcons fell victim to bad luck, injuries and problems finding quality linemen. Smith also made some questionable coaching decisions which this past season cost his team two games.
We should add that GM Thomas Dimitroff is not without blame here as the Falcons have severely lacked top flight talent on the line and have not drafted well the past several seasons.
But Dmitroff is likely to stay--though his status is a bit iffy too.
We feel bad about this, having covered the Falcons for 10-years. We were there when Smitty was hired and he was a total class act.
But the team has not produced and ultimately, owner Arthur Blank, with a billion dollar stadium on the way had to make a change. And he made it with the hope a new regime can bring in a winning team to launch the new building.
Only time will tell.