The Washington Redskins have fired four coaches in an attempt to improve the team’s miserable defense the past two seasons.
Skins coach Jay Gruden is parting with his entire defensive staff I’m told. Starting over on that side of the ball
— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) January 5, 2017
The firing of defensive coordinator Joe Barry is not a surprise, as he has been under fire for most of his tw0-year tenure in Washington. In fact, during Barry’s four years as a defensive coordinator in the NFL, his defenses have ranked 32, 32, 28 and 28 in total yards. Those last two seasons have been spent in Washington.
The other coaches reportedly to be let go are Robb Akey (defensive line), Perry Fewell (defensive backs), and head strength and conditioning coach Mike Clark.
Some of those assistants were actually hired before Barry was, but presumably head coach Jay Gruden wants to give his new defensive coordinator a clean slate to work with.
For now, at least, the team is retaining the services of Greg Manusky (outside linebackers) and Kirk Olividatti (inside linebackers). Both could be retained or let go by the eventual defensive coordinator, assuming neither one of them gets the job.
Gruden passed over highly-touted defensive coaches like Wade Phillips in order to hire Joe Barry, so it will be interesting to see if the head coach pursues a bigger name this time. Gus Bradley, former head coach in Jacksonville and defensive coordinator of the Seattle Seahawks, is on the market.