Norv Turner Fired as Redskins Coach

ByABC News
December 4, 2000, 11:48 AM

A S H B U R N, Va., Dec. 4 -- Norv Turner, able to produce only a 7-6record with the most expensive roster in NFL history, was firedtoday as coach of the Washington Redskins.

Turner was dismissed by owner Dan Snyder one day after a 9-7loss to the New York Giants. It was the Redskins fourth loss infive games and third straight at home, and it moved a team withSuper Bowl aspirations precariously close to elimination from theplayoff race.

Passing game coordinator Terry Robiskie was named the coach forthe rest of the season.

Master Offensive Strategist

Turner, hired as a first-time head coach by late owner Jack KentCooke in 1994, was third in seniority among NFL coaches behindPittsburghs Bill Cowher and Tennesees Jeff Fisher. But Turners record was only 49-59-1, including 8-21-1 in games decided by three points or fewer.

Turner did not have a come-from-behind victory in the fourthquarter until his fifth year as coach, and it took six years forhim to get the Redskins to the playoffs. That came last season,when Washington won the NFC East with a 10-6 record and defeatedDetroit in the first round of the postseason before losing 14-13 atTampa Bay.

Turner, 48, earned a reputation as a master offensive strategistwith the Dallas Cowboys, where he was the offensive coordinator fortwo Super Bowl teams in the early 1990s. Some of his game plans inWashington were truly masterful, but his lack of communicationskills and his inability to keep players focused and motivated ledto his downfall.

Then season, the stakes became higher when Snyder spent millionson some of the biggest names in the sport: Deion Sanders, BruceSmith, Jeff George, Mark Carrier, draft picks LaVar Arrington andChris Samuels and defensive coordinator Ray Rhodes.

Snyder also signed running back Stephen Davis to the mostlucrative contract in league history and tested the limits of fandevotion by charging admission to watch practices at training camp.The total player payroll of salaries and bonuses for the season isabout $100 million.