McDaniels given boot by Denver

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The Denver Broncos have fired coach Josh McDaniels , whose nearly two-year stint was marred by a videotaping scandal, personnel blunders and the franchise's worst skid in four decades.

Josh McDaniels: Broncos coach, hired 22 months ago, had lost 17 of his past 22 games.   Associated Press
Associated Press
Josh McDaniels: Broncos coach, hired 22 months ago, had lost 17 of his past 22 games.

Running backs coach Eric Studesville will serve as interim coach for the final month.

"My decision to relieve Josh McDaniels as head coach was not taken lightly. I will always be appreciative of his passion, enthusiasm and hard work, and I thank him for his efforts," team owner Pat Bowlen said in a statement Monday.

Studesville and chief operating officer Joe Ellis will meet with the media today. The rest of McDaniels' staff will stay on for the final four games.

McDaniels, who didn't return a message seeking comment, had nearly $7 million left on his contract, and Bowlen is still on the hook for millions owed to Mike Shanahan , whom he fired last year.

After winning his first six games his rookie season, McDaniels, a disciple of New England coach Bill Belichick , lost 17 of his past 22 games with the Broncos in his first NFL head coaching job.

RAVENS: The NFL fined linebacker Jameel McClain $40,000 for his helmet hit that left Steelers tight end Heath Miller with a concussion.

Despite the NFL's stricter enforcement of potentially dangerous hits, McClain was not penalized during Sunday's game for the hit, which bent Miller's head and neck backward and left him on the turf for several minutes before being helped off the field.

Even before the game ended, multiple NFL officials said the hit should have been penalized.

Ravens nose tackle Haloti Ngata was fined $15,000 for hitting Ben Roethlisberger 's helmet and breaking the quarterback's nose. Ngata's left hand raked across the quarterback's face during Pittsburgh's first offensive series. Ngata was not penalized.

Roethlisberger played the entire game, which Pittsburgh won 13-10. He underwent surgery on the nose Monday.

VIKINGS: Interim coach Leslie Frazier said he would be surprised if quarterback Brett Favre doesn't start next Sunday against the New York Giants.

Favre suffered a sprained joint in his right shoulder Sunday against the Buffalo Bills when he was hit hard on his first pass, and he wasn't able to return.

Frazier said Favre will be under constant evaluation. It's yet to be determined whether he will practice. Favre declined to comment Monday when he walked through the locker room, but he said after the game Sunday that he wasn't sure about his status.


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