Why the Atlanta Falcons fired coach Arthur Smith, and what's next

ATLANTA -- Atlanta Falcons owner Arthur Blank stated in August that he would be dissatisfied if his team did not become more competitive and improve by 2023. 

Blank's viewing experience throughout the season was far too repetitive.

So Blank decided to make a change, dismissing coach Arthur Smith after three seasons late Sunday night, following a 48-17 loss to the New Orleans Saints with a playoff berth at stake.

The generally patient Blank, who gave Jim Mora Jr. three seasons, Mike Smith seven years, and Dan Quinn five or more years, took a swift turn. 

The distinction is that all three coaches reached the playoffs in their first or second season as head coach.

While Arthur Smith's circumstances differed from those of his three predecessors when he took over due to salary cap constraints

he never concluded a season with a winning record or made the playoffs. So Atlanta has launched a coaching hunt.

Why fire Smith? Throughout Smith's tenure, the Falcons were inconsistent. Atlanta never won more than two games in a row under Smith, and both of his final two seasons included at least a three-game losing streak.

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