Black Monday has claimed its second victim in Atlanta Falcons head coach Mike Smith. The announcement will be made official at a press conference later today, but everyone is reporting that Smith, who led the Falcons to five straight winning seasons before finishing 6-10 this season and 4-12 the season before, is done.
Going into yesterday's game against the Panthers, Smith actually still had a chance to lead his team to the playoffs. A win would have put the Falcons at 7-9, atop the crap-ass NFC South, and bound for the playoffs. But even that would not have saved his job:
The Falcons were so done with Smith that they went ahead and hired a firm to conduct the team's coaching search before Sunday's game even kicked off. In the end, it's probably best for everyone involved that the Falcons got whomped by the Panthers yesterday. Going to the playoffs is nice, but much less so when the team is led by a lame-duck coach and defeat almost certainly awaits.