The first axe fell on the Jets' general manager Monday morning.
Owner Woody Johnson wasted no time in announcing early in the day Mike Tannenbaum would not return as general manager in 2013. The move had been anticipated after the Jets floundered to a 6-10 record and three straight losses to end the season.
"Our 2012 season was a disappointment to all of us. My goal every year as owner is to build a team that wins consistently. This year, we failed to achieve that goal," Johnson wrote in a statement released by the team.
"This morning, I informed Mike Tannenbaum that he will not return for the 2013 season. Mike devoted 15 years of service to the Jets, and I want to thank him for his hard work and dedication," Johnson said. "Although he helped guide us to two consecutive AFC Championship games, we are not where we want to be, and a new general manager will be critical to getting this team back on the right track."
Tannenbaum began working with the Jets in 1997 as the team's director of player contract negotiations. He gained wide acclaim for being a master of salary cap and financial issues. He took over as general manager from Terry Bradway in 2006.
"It's really sad; you don't want to see nobody get fired or anybody get cut or released in this manner but it happened," cornerback Darrelle Revis said. "He had a great speech that he wrote in the team meeting and guys clapped for him after. Felt sad for him."
Johnson announced a search for a new general manager will begin immediately.
Head coach Rex Ryan meanwhile, will return for another season in 2013. Ryan has two years left on his contract.
"Rex Ryan will remain the head coach of our football team," Johnson said. "I believe that he has the passion, the talent and the drive to successfully lead our team."
The team also announced in a surprising move that Ryan's press conference scheduled for Monday afternoon would be cancelled. There has been no decision made on the status of offensive coordinator Tony Sparano, who reports have cited as likely to be fired as well.
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