The last NFL head coach to suffer an embarrassing defeat in London — the Dolphins’ Joe Philbin — was fired before he had a chance to coach another game stateside. But after the Lions lost by 35 points to the Chiefs this morning, Detroit head coach Jim Caldwell doesn’t expect to similarly lose his job once he returns to the States.
“Hey, you know what, I’m working every single day,” Caldwell told reporters, including Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press. “My job is to get in and get my job done. Those things are answered by someone else and not me. But I fully anticipate being able to continue to do my job.
“You ask me that question all the time and I’m going to answer the exact same way,” Caldwell added. “I told you this is a day-to-day business. I’ve always known that since 1979 when I first entered, so there’s no issue there. It’s just the way it is. So leave it at that.”
Caldwell had a successful first year in the Motor City, leading the Lions to an 11-5 record and a playoff appearance. But the club has bottomed out thus far in 2015, stumbling to a 1-7 record, and ranking in the bottom 10 in both offensive and defensive DVOA, per Football Outsiders. Offensive coordinator Joe Lombardi and two other offensive assistants were fired following last Sunday’s game, but, at least through one contest, new OC Jim Bob Cooter‘s presence hasn’t seemed to help.
The Lions now head into a bye week, so if management was intent on firing Caldwell in-season, now would probably be the time to do it. Even if Caldwell does retain his job for now, it’s looking more and more like he will be out after the season. Albert Breer of NFL.com recently reported that if Caldwell is shown the door at season’s end, general manager Martin Mayhew would likely be fired, as well.