BUCCANEERS FIRE SMITH IN SURPRISE MOVE
tampa, fla. » The Buccaneers fired coach Lovie Smith on Wednesday night.
Smith went 6- 10 this season and 8- 24 over two years in charge of the team. The announcement came as a surprise to many, because Smith’s job was not considered to be in danger.
A statement from Buccaneers co- chairman Joel Glazer said: “This decision was difficult on a variety of levels. I am disappointed that we were not more successful these past few seasons, but we are committed to doing what is necessary to give our fans the winning team they deserve. “
General manager Jason Licht will oversee the search for a new coach.
Johnson mulls future B allen park, mich. » Calvin Johnson has drawn comparisons to Barry Sanders in Detroit.
Both made spectacular plays for the Lions. Off the field, they were quiet and humble.
The superstar receiver and running back might have one more thing in common this offseason.
“Like many players at this stage of their career, I am currently evaluating options for my future,” Johnson said Wednesday. “I would expect to have a decision regarding this matter in the not- too- distant future.”
Johnson has declined to say if he will restructure his contract, which calls for him to count $ 24 million against the salary cap next season.
If the option Johnson chooses is retirement, he will walk away from the game despite having the physical ability to play more just as Sanders did at the same age.
Coach Payton staying B
metairie, la. » Coach Sean Payton said he’s remaining with the Saints, ending speculation that he could be on the move after consecutive 7- 9 seasons.
Payton has been with the Saints for a decade and coming off his first consecutive losing seasons. RB Lynch a “full go” B renton, wash.
» Running back Marshawn Lynch was a full participant in practice on Wednesday, his first onfield work with the Seahawks since undergoing abdominal surgery in late November and missing the final seven games of the regular season.