Report: Shanahan, 'Skins strike a deal
Posted by Mike Florio on January 5, 2010 7:51 PM ET
Well, it took a little longer than 114 minutes, but the Redskins reportedly have a new coach.
Mike Klis of the Denver Post reports that the Redskins and Mike Shanahan have reached an agreement in principle that makes Shanahan the replacement for Jim Zorn.
Klis also reports that Broncos owner Pat Bowlen will save $7 million over the next two years, but that Bowlen will still pay Shanahan $3.5 million in each of the next two seasons to not coach the Broncos.
We'd previously heard that Shanahan didn't have a 100-percent offset on his buyout; little did we realize it was only 50 percent.
Expect more details to emerge as the worst-kept secret in the NFL comes to fruition.
The Washington Redskins moved quickly in their pursuit of Mike Shanahan on Monday, flying in the former Denver Broncos coach on the same day the team fired Jim Zorn.
Shanahan landed at Dulles International Airport near Redskins Park in mid-afternoon and was driven away in a limo to meet with owner Dan Snyder
Shanahan's arrival was just one dramatic movement in a fast-moving day as the Redskins sought a new direction after a 4-12 season. It started when Zorn was dismissed in the pre-dawn hours after Sunday's 23-20 loss at San Diego.
Shanahan won two Super Bowls in 14 seasons with the Broncos. He was fired a year ago after Denver missed the playoffs for the third straight season.
Zorn went 12-20 over two seasons, but he lost 18 of his last 24 games after a 6-2 start in 2008.
The Redskins struggled early despite a weak schedule this season and finished with their worst record since 1994.
Zorn's replacement will be Washington's seventh coach since Snyder bought the team in 1999. Taking a prominent public role in the decision is Bruce Allen, who was hired as the GM last month.
"No one in the organization is satisfied with our record over the last two years," Snyder said in a statement released by the team, "and I am sure that Jim would concur with that statement. It has been painful for him, too. I certainly accept responsibility for mistakes that I have made.
" I am hopeful that our fans will accept my commitment and pledge to deliver a franchise that can compete in the NFC East every season."
Neither Snyder nor Zorn was made available to reporters.
Zorn's dismissal had been expected for months. The front office stripped him of his play-calling duties in late October, and Snyder interviewed assistant coach Jerry Gray for the job weeks ago. The new coach, Snyder and Allen will have a monumental task to rebuild a team with many roster deficiencies and major questions at offensive line, quarterback and running back.
[ Edited by MadMartz on Jan 5, 2010 at 6:59 PM ]