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Black Monday 2012: NFL head coaches, GMs fired in droves day after season ends

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(AP/ABC7) The day after the 2012 NFL regular season ended turned out to be one of the busiest for teams looking to go in a different direction, as seven coaches and numerous GMs were fired during one of the busiest Black Mondays in memory.

Andy Reid was one of more than a half dozen head coaches fired on Monday. Photo: Jay Westcott

In total, seven coaches were relieved of their duties and a number of high-level, prominent general mangers lost their jobs as well.

The head coaches and general managers who lost their jobs on Monday or beforehand include:

Andy Reid, Philadelphia Eagles

Andy Reid's worst coaching season with the Philadelphia Eagles ended Monday after 14 years when he was fired by owner Jeffrey Lurie, who said it was time "to move in a new direction."

The dismissal came one day after Reid and the Eagles were humiliated 42-7 by the New York Giants and ended their season at 4-12.

"Andy leaves us with a winning tradition that we can build upon. And we are very excited about the future," Lurie said in a statement released by the team.

Lovie Smith, Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears fired coach Lovie Smith on Monday after the team missed the playoffs for the fifth time in six seasons.

Smith was informed of the decision by general manager Phil Emery on the day after the Bears beat Detroit to finish 10-6 but still didn't make the playoffs.

Smith led the Bears to a Super Bowl, but also saw his team collapse in the second half of the past two seasons. Hired in 2004, Smith led the Bears to three division titles, two NFC title games and a 2007 Super Bowl appearance in his nine seasons. His record is 81-63, and he leaves with one year left on his contract.

Norv Turner (coach) and A.J. Smith (GM), San Diego Chargers

The San Diego Chargers have fired coach Norv Turner and general manager A.J. Smith after missing the playoffs for the third straight season.

Coming after a season of stunning come-from-ahead losses and increasing fan anger, the firings complete a startling fall for a team that won the AFC West from 2006-09.

The Chargers are the third team to fire Turner, who has an overall head coaching record of 114-122-1.

Despite having what was perceived as one of the NFL's most-talented rosters for several seasons, Smith and Turner never got the Chargers to the Super Bowl.

Romeo Crennel, Kansas City Chiefs

The Kansas City Chiefs fired coach Romeo Crennel on Monday, but made no move on embattled general manager Scott Pioli despite a 2-14 season marked by blowout losses, fan rebellion and a murder-suicide involving one of their players.

Crennel was fired after one full season as coach, and one day after Kansas City matched the fewest wins in franchise history with an embarrassing 38-3 loss to the Denver Broncos.

"I am embarrassed by the poor product we gave our fans this season, and I believe we have no choice but to move the franchise in a different direction," Chiefs chairman Clark Hunt said in a statement. "I will immediately begin the search for the next head coach of the Chiefs. The entire football operation will remain under review and there may be additional changes to come."

Chan Gailey, Buffalo Bills

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) - Chan Gailey has been fired by the Buffalo Bills after three losing seasons.

The announcement was made Monday, a day after the Bills closed out another disappointing season with a 28-9 win over the New York Jets.

Buffalo finished 6-10, and Gailey leaves with a 16-32 record. There was no immediate word on the status of general manager Buddy Nix.

In a hopeful season after signing star defensive end Mario Williams to a $100 million contract, the Bills reverted to their ways of the past, failing to make the playoffs for a 13th straight year, the NFL's longest active drought.

Pat Shurmur (coach) and Tom Heckert Jr. (GM), Cleveland Browns

BEREA, Ohio (AP) - One day after another dismal season ended with a loss in Pittsburgh, the Browns fired coach Pat Shurmur and general manager Tom Heckert, the first moves in an expected overhaul by new owner Jimmy Haslam and CEO Joe Banner.

Shurmur went 9-23 in his two seasons with the Browns, who will embark on yet another offseason of change - the only constant in more than a decade of futility. Cleveland has lost at least 11 games in each of the past five seasons and made the playoffs just once since returning to the NFL as an expansion team in 1999.

Ken Whisenhunt (coach) and Rod Graves (GM), Arizona Cardinals

The Arizona Cardinals have fired coach Ken Whisenhunt after six seasons that included the long-suffering franchise's only Super Bowl appearance.

The team also ousted general manager Rod Graves, who had been with the franchise for 16 years. He'd been general manager since 2007.

The housecleaning by Cardinals President Michael Bidwill, son of team owner Bill Bidwill, followed a season that saw the team start 4-0 but lose 11 of its last 12 to finish 5-11.

The 50-year-old Whisenhunt had more wins than any other coach in Cardinals history, going 45-51, 4-2 in the playoffs. He had a year worth about $5.5 million left on his contract.

Mike Tannenbaum, New York Jets

The New York Jets fired GM Mike Tannenbaum after a dismal 6-10 season, but owner Woody Johnson announced that Rex Ryan will be back for a fifth season as the team's coach.

"I believe that he has the passion, the talent, and the drive to successfully lead our team," Johnson said of Ryan in a statement.

The futures of both Tannenbaum and Ryan were unclear after a 28-9 loss to Buffalo on Sunday, a miserable finish to the team's first losing season in Ryan's four seasons as coach. While it appeared Tannenbaum was a likely gone, it was believed Ryan might also be on shaky ground.

Gene Smith, Jacksonville Jaguars

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) - After four years of futility, the Jacksonville Jaguars are heading in a different direction.

The Jaguars fired general manager Gene Smith on Monday after four disappointing seasons, including the worst year in franchise history.

Head Coach Mike Mularkey could be next. Owner Shad Khan is waiting to decide Mularkey's fate until he hires a new general manager, which could happen this week.

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