Lions Fire Head Coach Jim Caldwell

A day after defeating the Packers, 35-11, to cap their third winning campaign in four seasons, the Lions fired head coach Jim Caldwell, reports’s Ian Rapoport (Twitter link). Jim Caldwell (Vertical)

Caldwell twice led the team to the postseason, the most playoff trips by a Detroit coach since Bobby Ross in the late-1990s. Despite the regular-season success, Caldwell could not deliver a postseason victory, something that has eluded the Lions for 25 years.

Rapoport also reports (Twitter link) the team is expected to interview highly sought after Patriots defensive coordinator Matt Patricia for the vacant head-coaching position. He also notes Lions general manager Bob Quinn’s New England ties will help in the team’s pursuit of Patricia. Before ascending to GM in Detroit, Quinn spent 15 years in New England as a scout and director of player personnel.

The 62-year-old Caldwell has delivered winning campaigns in five of his eight seasons as a head coach and advanced to the Super Bowl with the Colts. His winning percentage of .562 as Lions head coach is the highest of any full-time coach of the franchise for more than one season since Buddy Parker recorded a 47-23-2 mark and a .671 winning percentage in the 1950s.

The dismissal ends longtime speculation over the future of Caldwell in Detroit. After losing his last three regular-season games and the team’s wildcard matchup with Seattle in 2017, Caldwell was retained and given a contract extension. The terms of the deal, however, were not made available immediately and it was later discovered the extension only covered him through the 2018 campaign.

Instead of firing Caldwell, the team hired Quinn to replace former GM Martin Mayhew. With Caldwell now gone, Quinn is set to hire his first head coach on the job.


Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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8 comments on “Lions Fire Head Coach Jim Caldwell

  1. diller79

    Lions better be getting an upgrade at HC now(Matt Patricia) because Caldwell is a better HC then half of the teams in the league have and its not as if he hasn’t been successful in his tenure with the lions. Plus all the players love him

    • lucienbel

      Packers fan here, but I agree. He’s the best coach ousted this year by far. It’d be silly to get rid of him unless they had a solid idea they could get Matt Patricia.

    • dugdog83

      Why is everyone so high on Patricia? I don’t get it, his defense sucks. He has a super bowl on his resume which his defense blew the first half of and Brady saved his job. McDaniels should be the Pats coordinator we are talking about.

      “But McDaniels sucked as a head coach his first time”

      I know so did Belichick in Cleveland. Give josh a QB he can win with (not tebow) and a GM he is familiar with (Quin).

      At least Jim Schwartz had a history of being a good DC, Patricia does not.

  2. joefriday14

    The Lions will probably dig up the highly revered Tommy Hudsmith and Russ Francis to reclaim the worst record in football by going 0-17. Hudsmith will abandon pass and field goals for the Model T Offense where all plays will be run to the right or backwards. Jim Caldwell was given a new Lincoln but the car had no gas in it and he had to have it towed out of Ford Field.

  3. joefriday14

    opps I spelled his name wrong. It should have been Tommy Hudspeth, Football coach extraordinaire

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