Bears fire Phil Emery, Marc Trestman

The Chicago Bears fired general manager Phil Emery and coach Marc Trestman on Monday after a 5-11 season.

In a statement, Trestman thanked the Bears organization for giving him the chance to be the team’s coach.

“I also want to thank all the coaches and players who gave us everything we asked over the past two years,” he said in the statement. “I have tremendous respect for this organization. Chicago is a special city with great fans. I appreciate the warm support my family and I received.”

Trestman spoke to the team Monday morning before departing the team facility for the final time.

“It was the same Marc Trestman meeting we always have,” Bears tight end Martellus Bennett said. “He just said said ‘thank you’ and that he ‘appreciated’ the guys. It wasn’t anything different than he usually does when he comes in. He has his notes written down and he’s meticulous about what he says. He’s very good with the words he chooses to use.

“For coach [Trestman] I just think it’s a dream deferred. I think he’s a really good coach, an excellent guy, and I think he will have another chance to coach in this league.”

Emery met with reporters at Halas Hall on Monday, but read from a prepared statement, and took no questions.

“This job was the opportunity of a lifetime. My only regret is we didn’t win enough games for that opportunity to continue,” he said in part of his statement.

“Thank you to all the Bears fans that have reached out to me the last three years, who have stopped to say hello, have extended their hand in friendship and that I’ve had the opportunity to have a conversation with. Your kindness does a lot more for the soul than people can imagine. To borrow a lyric or a line from Cary Newcomer: “We stand breathless on the clean edge of change.” So it’s time to change and move forward. Go Bears. Thanks for your time.”

Several players expressed their disappointment in Emery’s dismal, specifically two-time Pro Bowl right guard Kyle Long. Emery played a pivotal role in the club drafting Long in 2013 at No. 20 overall in the first round, despite Long’s limited body of work in the collegiate ranks.

“It’s a business, and it’s unfortunate that people’s jobs are at stake all the time,” Long said. “I have the upmost respect for Trestman and Phil Emery. Those were the guys that stood on the table for me last year at the draft, and not many people did that for me. Those are the guys that brought me in here. I love those guys.”

Offensive coordinator Aaron Kromer, who tearfully apologized to the team late in the season after admitting he was the source of a NFL Network report that was highly critical of quarterback Jay Cutler, also was fired, a source told ESPN.

Former San Francisco 49ers head coach Mike Singletary, who starred for 12 seasons as a linebacker for the Bears (1981 to 1992), would be interested in interviewing for now-vacant Bears coaching job, a league source told ESPN.

Singletary is currently working for the NFL as a senior adviser to executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent. He’ll also be coaching at the East-West Shrine Game in a few weeks.

The Bears usually go outside the box when hiring a head coach. Only once have they hired a coach who had NFL head-coaching experience, according to ESPN Stats & Information. Paddy Driscoll was actually a player-coach with the Chicago Cardinals in the 1920s before he took the Bears’ coaching duties from 1956 to 1957.

Poo Bear (@poobear) Feat Tyga (@Tyga) – Work For It

Poo Bear links up firh Tyga for his drop of his latest visual for Work For It.

Jets fire Head Coach Rex Ryan

Coach Rex Ryan and general manager John Idzik were fired early Monday morning, the first casualties of the New York Jets’ fourth straight year out of the playoffs.

Owner Woody Johnson made the decisive, if not surprising, moves after his team stumbled to 4-12, its worst record since 2007. Johnson recently called it the most difficult of his 15 seasons as the head of the organization.

Ryan addressed the team briefly Monday morning, showing little emotion, according to players. Instead of giving a speech, Ryan showed a highlight film of top moments from the past few years. Idzik did not speak to the team.

“We’re in the win business and we’re not winning, so I think this was something I had to do. … It became pretty apparent during the season the team wasn’t getting better. Like [former Jets coach and GM Bill] Parcells says, you are what your record says you are,” Johnson said at a news conference.

Johnson said he and newly hired consultants Charley Casserly and Ron Wolf — both former longtime GMs — will lead the general manager and coaching searches. He said they’d probably hire a general manager first, but he said things could change.

“This is very, very critical right now,” Johnson said. “We’ve got to make some good decisions. We have to structure it properly. We have to know exactly what we’re looking for in a head coach and how he defines exactly what he’s looking for. Same with the GM.”

He said they already have reached out to GM and coaching candidates, adding they want to begin the process immediately.

In a mea culpa, Johnson expressed some regret for hiring a GM — Idzik — who didn’t have a background in scouting and personnel. This time, the Jets would like to add a football executive with a scouting pedigree. The owner also admitted they should’ve spent more in free agency. They began the season with more than $20 million in cap space.

“I get all the blame,” Johnson said. “I have to get a lot better.”

Johnson had one foot-in-mouth moment, saying he’d be in favor of reuniting with Darrelle Revis, who is under contract through 2015 with the New England Patriots.

“I’d love for Darrelle to come back,” he said, perhaps opening himself up to a possible tampering accusation.

Ryan’s fate was sealed several weeks ago, as the Jets were mathematically eliminated from postseason contention before Thanksgiving. In recent days, he had been telling friends he expected to be fired.

“I’m not afraid of what lies ahead, I can tell you that,” Ryan said Sunday after the Jets beat the Miami Dolphins.

Until recently, the decision to fire Idzik was less certain, if only because he was hired just two years ago. But news of the Jets’ hiring Casserly last week was a clear sign that Johnson wanted to take the franchise in a different direction.

Idzik came under heavy criticism for his conservative spending, his poor 2014 draft class and a rambling, midseason news conference in which he seemed out of touch with the sorry state of the team. It prompted a group of disgruntled fans to raise money to purchase a “Fire John Idzik” billboard near MetLife Stadium.

Ryan and Idzik, paired by Johnson, spent two seasons together, raising expectations after a surprising 8-8 finish in 2013. Ryan received a contract extension — guaranteed money through 2015 — but the 2014 season was undermined by poor quarterback play and a glaring lack of depth at cornerback.

The Jets lost eight straight games at one point, resulting in what Ryan called an “awful” season.

Ryan finished with a 46-50 record in six seasons, the third-longest tenure among Jets’ head coaches. He won more postseason games (four) than any other Jets coach.

So ends one of the most entertaining eras in team history.

The outspoken Ryan, whose brash style and Super Bowl guarantees turned the Jets into a national fascination, was a media sensation from day one.

In his first news conference, he predicted a celebratory visit to the White House, and he came close to delivering one with back-to-back trips to the AFC Championship Game in his first two seasons. But he wasn’t able to sustain the success, as the Jets went 26-38 over his final four seasons.

Ryan was brash to the bitter end, vowing last week, “One day, I’m going to win that thing” — meaning the Vince Lombardi Trophy.

His downfall was instability at the quarterback position. The defensive-minded Ryan started two rookies during his tenure, Mark Sanchez and Geno Smith, resulting in 109 interceptions — the sixth-highest total over that span.

Remembering PIMP C On His Birthday

Today, December 29th 2014, would have been Pimp C’s 41st birthday. We digged in our vaults for exclusive footage of his friends remembering his life & times. We put together this episode featuring Bun B, Too $hort, Slim Thug, Paul Wall & DJ Whoo Kid, who shared with us their most cherished moments spent with the late great Chad Butler .. #UGK4LIFE ( we luh you Pimp )

Cowboys Earn NFC’s No. 3 Seed, Slated To Host Detroit In Sunday Wildcard Matchup

IRVING, Texas – As the Cowboys prepared to land in Dallas on Sunday evening, coach Jason Garrett informed his team of their playoff fate.

Having secured the NFC’s No. 3 seed, the Cowboys will play host to the Detroit Lions in the second of two Sunday wildcard games, with kickoff slated for 3:40 p.m. at AT&T Stadium.

There had been talk all week that, given the right results, Dallas could secure either the No. 1 or No. 2 seed, and therefore a first-round bye. After downing Washington, 44-17, though, they didn’t get that help.

Dallas would have needed a tie between Detroit and Green Bay to be the No. 1 seed, and they would have needed losses by both Arizona and Seattle to be the No. 2 seed. The Packers defeated the Lions, 30-20, eliminating that possibility. The

Cardinals lost to San Francisco, but the Seahawks thwarted the Cowboys’ hopes with a 20-6 win against St. Louis.

Seattle, Green Bay and Dallas all finished the regular season with an NFL-best 12-4 record. NFL rules state that ties between more than two teams are settled using conference record, however. Both the Seahawks and Packers finished with better records against NFC foes than the Cowboys.

Storylines will abound when the Lions, who finished the regular season 11-5, get to town this weekend. The Cowboys’ top two coordinators – Scott Linehan and Rod Marinelli – have coached for Detroit in the past. Linehan was the offensive coordinator in Detroit from 2009-13, helping Calvin Johnson to career years.

Marinelli was the head coach in Detroit in 2008, when the Lions finished as the only 0-16 team in NFL history.

That doesn’t factor in the last two games between these two teams – both of which saw furious comebacks by the Lions. Matthew Stafford led Detroit to a game-winning touchdown in the dying seconds last season, with the help of a ridiculous 14-catch, 329-yard day by Johnson.

In 2011 – the Lions’ last trip to AT&T Stadium – they rallied from a 27-3 third quarter deficit to win a thriller, 34-30.

If that wasn’t enough, Garrett earned the first home win of his career against Detroit. Dallas defeated the Lions, 35-19, in Garrett’s second game as head coach.

Kim Dotcom’s Mega to launch browser-based encrypted video call and chat service ‘soon’

Kim Dotcom, founder of the file hosting service Mega, today revealed his company will be launching a browser-based chat service “soon.” Dotcom referred to the service with the hashtag #MegaChat, though it’s not clear if that is just the codename or if it will indeed be its final name.

This is not the first time Dotcom has talked about the upcoming service, which gets mentioned every few months but has yet to hit public availability in any form. There is naturally a lot of hype surrounding it, given the increasing importance put on secure communications on the Internet. This time, the entrepreneur is promising the service will be encrypted, browser-based, and offer “high-speed” file transfers:

 

Back in February 2013, Kim first unveiled that Mega would be expanding into email, chat, voice, video, and “mobile.” We haven’t heard much about the secure email servicesince August 2013, the company has since released a few mobile apps, and of course the other three all fall into the same category: the upcoming Skype competitor.

In fact, Dotcom last year named Gmail, Skype, and iCloud as services that don’t offer enough privacy because they are based in the U.S., where the American government can demand access to data under certain circumstances. Since the news today focused on a chat service, he called out Skype again:

 

In November 2013, the chat service was expected to arrive “in early 2014.” Mega users were supposed to be able to exchange messages in real-time with each other, as well as be able attach files to those messages. The company also promised secure audio and video calls.

It’s not clear why it has taken so long to get the service out the door, though we suspect the browser-based requirement could have been a factor. The lack of having to download a separate application or install a plugin is a great trend, but it does mount a few technical hurdles, particularly when attempting to offer end-to-end encryption.

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