Around the NFL  

 

St. Louis Rams fire OC Frank Cignetti after another loss

Print

Jeff Fisher is admitting another mistake in how he constructs an NFL offense.

The St. Louis Rams coach announced Monday that he's fired offensive coordinator Frank Cignetti. Assistant head coach/offense Rob Boras will take over for Cignetti.

"It was, in my estimation, time to move in a different direction," Fisher said during Monday's news conference. "(All of) the blame's not to fall on (Cignetti's) shoulders, but it's the way this business works. Players contributed, coaches contributed, everybody contributed, but we have to move in a different direction. The lack of production's obvious -- we've been talking about it for weeks -- and we need more production."

Fisher and general manager Les Snead have failed to build a competent offense in four years with the team. Fisher allowed former offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer to leave last season for a college job when it was clear the Rams didn't truly want to keep him on the staff. Now Fisher's hand-picked replacement is out of a job. Cignetti joined Fisher's staff in 2012 and spent three seasons as the team's quarterbacks coach.

"Eighteen touchdowns in 12 weeks just doesn't give you a chance to win a lot of games," Fisher said. "Seven of our 12 games, we've scored 13 points or less. So we're going to move in a different direction under the guidance of Rob. That's gonna include our philosophy, which is to run the football, convert third downs and play the pass and be aggressive."

The Rams' big offseason move was their trade for quarterback Nick Foles. But he's going to be benched (again) for Case Keenum in Week 14. St. Louis ranks 31st in points and yards. The Rams haven't been in the top 20 in yards or points since Fisher took over. They are coming off a game with only nine first downs, 212 yards and three points against the Cardinals. This is an offense-first league, and Fisher hasn't coached a top-10 offense since 2003.

Boras, who last coordinated an offense at UNLV more than a decade ago, now gets a month-long audition for the job. Fisher will have to go back to the drawing board to find the next St. Louis coordinator in the offseason if he's not impressed by Boras.

Then again, that assumes that Fisher will remain the coach. And that the team will remain in St. Louis. Everything remains in play for these Rams, except completed touchdown passes.

Print