Just hours after Atlanta Falcons Head Coach Arthur Smith confronted New Orleans Saints Head Coach Dennis Allen during the post game of the Saints win over the Falcons, Smith was fired from the team.

Smith was dismissed after three straight 7-10 losing seasons in Atlanta, compiling a total record of 21-30. His final loss on Sunday was a 48-17 blowout at the hands of the Saints.

Don't worry too much about Smith though, he will be fine. The 41-year-old coach is the son of FedEx founder Fred Smith, so he's going to be doing just fine.

Atlanta Falcons v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

During the final weeks of this season, the Falcons lost four of their last five games, including back to back 20+ point losses. Even before Smith's three straight losing seasons, the Falcons had three straight losing seasons prior to that.

Smith was hired in Atlanta in January of 2021, where he inherited a team still quarterbacked by Falcons legend Matt Ryan. Under Smith, Ryan was traded at the end of that season, leaving the team without an NFL-experienced quarterback on the roster. During the NFL Draft the year before Ryan was traded, the team passed on quarterbacks Justin Fields and Mac Jones as possible replacements for Ryan. They instead took tight end Kyle Pitts with the 4th overall pick.

Atlanta Falcons v Detroit Lions
Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images

The following year, the Falcons were sitting at the 8th pick in the NFL Draft, and used it on wide receiver Drake London. They waited until their third round pick to take quarterback Desmond Ridder from Cincinnati. By the start of the 2023 season, it had become obvious that the Falcons weren't 100% committed to Ridder, as they signed free agent Taylor Heinicke, who had started at least 9 games for Washington each of the previous two seasons. Heinicke set records and started in the Playoffs for Washington before joining Atlanta.

In other words, the Falcons loaded up on offensive weapons through the draft, but never addressed their quarterback position after trading Matt Ryan while Smith was the head coach. That lack of leadership under center, with an offensive minded coach, was probably a major contributing factor in the results the Falcons have had, and why Smith won't be there next year.

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Pictures from LSU's 2024 ReliaQuest Bowl Win

The LSU Tigers beat the Wisconsin Badgers 35-31 in the 2024 ReliaQuest Bowl on January 1st, 2024.


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