The Tampa Bay Buccaneers announced Wednesday night that head coach Lovie Smith has been fired.
Buccaneers co-chairman Joel Glazer released the following statement:
“After careful consideration, we informed Lovie that we have decided to make a change. I want to thank Lovie for his hard work and dedication to the Buccaneers during his time here. This decision was difficult on a variety of levels. I am disappointed that we were not more successful these past few seasons, but we are committed to doing what is necessary to give our fans the winning team they deserve. As we move forward, general manager Jason Licht will oversee the process for finding our next head coach.”
The announcement came as a surprise to many because Smith’s job was not considered to be in danger. Smith was named head coach of the Buccaneers in January 2014. The team went 2-14 in Smith’s first year and 6-10 this season.
Smith led the Chicago Bears to the NFC title in 2006, when they lost to Indianapolis in the Super Bowl. He was 84-66 in nine seasons with Chicago.
Linebacker Lavonte David took to Twitter after the announcement.
General manager Jason Licht will oversee the search for a new coach.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.