Arthur Blank, owner of the Falcons, has made a move without waiting for daylight. Head coach Arthur Smith was let go by the Atlanta Hawks just after midnight, the club confirmed.
Over his three years with the Falcons, Smith had a record of 21-30, including a 7-10 mark in each of those seasons. On Sunday, the team's season came to a disappointing end in a 48-17 loss to New Orleans.
Decisions like this are never easy and they never feel good," Blank stated. We are extremely grateful to Coach Smith for everything he has done for the Falcons over the past three years and hold him in the highest regard. While he has helped establish a positive team atmosphere on the football field, our performance has fallen short of expectations.
"After significant thought and reflection, we have determined the best way forward for our team is new leadership in the head coaching position.
Blank and Rich McKay, along with General Manager Terry Fontenot and "several other appropriate members of Blank's Atlanta Falcons and AMB Sports and Entertainment organizations," will spearhead the hunt for a new head coach, according to the Falcons' press statement.
A news conference with Blank and McKay is scheduled for Monday afternoon.
Following their dismissal by Atlanta in 2020 (Dan Quinn and Thomas Dimitroff), Fontenot and Smith were hired in the same offseason.
The Falcons, Raiders, Chargers, and Panthers are the four teams with official head coaching openings; more are anticipated to be announced on Monday.
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