Falcons fire coordinators, keep coach Quinn

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Coordinators Steve Sarkisian (offense), Marquand Manuel (defense) and Keith Armstrong (special teams) were fired by the Falcons on Monday.
Coordinators Steve Sarkisian (offense), Marquand Manuel (defense) and Keith Armstrong (special teams) were fired by the Falcons on Monday.

The Atlanta Falcons fired all three coordinators on Black Monday, but will keep coach Dan Quinn.

Offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian, defensive coordinator Marquand Manuel and special-teams coordinator Keith Armstrong got the sack a day after the Falcons defeated the Tampa Bay Buccaneers 34-32.

Despite the win, it was a disappointing season for Atlanta, which went 7-9 and was riddled by injuries.

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Multiple starters, especially on defense, either missed most or all of the season, leaving the Falcons depleted.

"All three of these men are excellent coaches that I have a lot of respect for," Quinn said in a statement. "While these are difficult decisions, we know we have a group of players here we are excited about and in order for us to consistently play true to our identity in all three phases we thought we needed some changes.”

The decision to fire Armstrong was especially hard, since he had been with the team since 2008.

“Coach Armstrong helped develop some really good players on our kicking units over his time here,” Quinn said. “Special teams has to be the gateway to the identity of our football team. In order to see that, we felt we needed a new voice and design.”

The Falcons have a litany of options to choose from to replace their coordinators, given that six head coaches have been fired within the past 24 hours.

As of Monday, the list of fired coaches includes the Denver Broncos' Vance Joseph, New York Jets' Todd Bowles, Buccaneers' Dirk Koetter, the Arizona Cardinals' Steve Wilks, Miami Dolphins' Adam Gase and Cincinnati Bengals' Marvin Lewis.

They join Hue Jackson and Mike McCarthy, who were fired earlier in the season by the Cleveland Browns and Green Bay Packers respectively.

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