Lake Forest, Ill. — The Chicago Bears fired John Fox on Monday after three losing seasons, ending one of the least successful coaching stints in team history.
The dismissal came one day after the Bears lost at NFC North champion Minnesota to finish 5-11.
“Today is the tough part of our results-oriented business,” Fox said in a statement.
Chicago has had four consecutive losing seasons — each with 10 or more losses. The Bears haven’t finished above .500 since they let Lovie Smith go following a 10-6 finish in 2012. They haven’t been to the playoffs since 2010.
Fox was 14-34 in his three years with Chicago, a .292 winning percentage that ranks as the second lowest for the Bears. Only Abe Gibron was worse — 11-30-1 (.274) from 1972-74.
Even so, cornerback Prince Amukamara said there were plenty of hugs for Fox when he met with the team Monday.
“Great, passionate coach,” he said. “Didn’t give up on us, didn’t quit on us and that’s very special for a head coach. One thing we did appreciate about him is he always pointed the thumb and not the finger so he takes all blame, and we love him and I know guys are going to miss him.”
For the next head coach, topping the to-do list will be getting the most out of Mitchell Trubisky. After all, general manager Ryan Pace staked his reputation to the quarterback when he traded up a spot with San Francisco to draft him with the No. 2 overall pick last spring.
Fox is 133-123 in 16 seasons as a head coach and is one of six coaches to lead two teams to Super Bowl appearances, joining Don Shula, Bill Parcells, Dan Reeves, Dick Vermeil and Mike Holmgren.
Fox helped orchestrate quick turnarounds while leading Carolina and Denver to a combined six division titles and seven playoff appearances in 13 years before he took over Chicago in January 2015. But his time with the Bears was forgettable.
Tearful farewell for Arians
Say goodbye to “No risk it, no biscuit.”
Bruce Arians, one of the NFL’s biggest personalities, is retiring from coaching after five mostly successful and usually entertaining seasons as head coach of the Cardinals.
Arians, 65, and a two-time NFL Coach of the Year known for his Kangol-style hats, colorful vocabulary and wide-open “no risk it, no biscuit” offense, announced the decision in an emotional session with the media on Monday.
“It’s been an unbelievable journey,” he said.
“The tears you see are really tears of joy and peace. I’ll miss the players. I’ll miss coming out of the locker room hearing the national anthem because it still gets to me.”
Arians said he told the players of his decision Sunday after the team’s 26-24 win at Seattle and the players never leaked it to reporters.
“And they lied to you because of that,” he said. “There’s really no greater feeling in the world to know your players have your back.”
Broncos stick with Joseph
The Broncos are retaining rookie coach Vance Joseph, who went 5-11 in his first season.
General manager John Elway tweeted: “Vance and I had a great talk this morning about our plan to attack this offseason and get better as a team. We believe in Vance as our head coach. Together, we’ll put in the work to improve in all areas and win in 2018.”
Lewis awaits decision
Coach Marvin Lewis talked to owner Mike Brown about his future with the Bengals, but they reached no conclusions and planned more discussions.
The Bengals failed to make the playoffs for the second straight season, and Lewis’ contract is finished after his 15th year in Cincinnati. He said that he’s not sure he’ll be back. He and Brown had a general discussion about the team’s future.
“If his direction is different than my direction, it’s probably not good,” Lewis said. “So we just have to make sure we’re all on the same page.”
Washington signed cornerback Quinton Dunbar to a multiyear deal.
... Ravens defensive coordinator Dean Pees announced his retirement Monday following a successful NFL career that began with the Patriots.
... Texans general manager Rick Smith provided more details on his future with the team, a day after announcing that he was taking an extended leave of absence to be with his wife as she battles breast cancer. Smith said that he will return to the team, but that he expects to be away for at least a year.
... Bills coach Sean McDermott says medical test results on LeSean McCoy’s injured right ankle were negative, giving the running back a chance to play against Jacksonville in the AFC wild-card game on Sunday.