Tony Sparano Fired as New York Jets Offensive Coordinator & Other AFC East News

Erik FrenzSenior Writer IJanuary 8, 2013

MIAMI GARDENS, FL - SEPTEMBER 23: Offensive coordinator Tony Sparano of the New York Jets looks on as the players warm up prior to the game against the Miami Dolphins on September 23, 2012 at Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)
Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

For a week, blood has been shed in the New York Jets' staff. 

Tuesday's casuality is offensive coordinator Tony Sparano, with the news first reported by Chris Mortensen of ESPN.

The Jets have fired offensive coordinator Tony Sparano, as expected, per league sources.

— Chris Mortensen (@mortreport) January 8, 2013

This is another high-profile quarterbacks coach Matt Cavanaugh was fired on Sunday.

"When we sat down with Tony, I knew that he was the right person at the right time for our offense," Ryan said when Sparano was hired (via Shutdown Corner). "I've admired his work as a competitor in the division for the past three seasons. His teams were always physical, tough and hard-nosed."

In retrospect, perhaps the Jets brought Sparano in not to install an offense, but to instill a mentality.

Whatever it was, it was unsuccessful. The Jets' offense was one of the worst in the league in 2012, averaging 17.6 points per game and ranking in the bottom 10 in the NFL in both passing YPA and rushing YPA.

Now, the Jets will be moving on to their third offensive coordinator in the past three years.

There are plenty of good candidates available, but Rich Cimini of ESPN New York indicated the Jets may already have their eyes on a couple of candidates.

Jets will have 3 offensive coordinators in 3 yrs. Top names on #Jets wish list are Norv Turner, Cam Cameron.

— Rich Cimini (@RichCimini) January 8, 2013

Norv Turner has experience as an offensive coordinator and as a head coach, which would allow him to be autonomous with the offense. The San Diego Chargers ranked in the top five in Football Outsiders' opponent-adjusted metrics in four of Turner's six years as head coach, only falling short in his first and last years.

Cam Cameron is a different story, and his success is far more spotty than Turner's. He was fired midseason while the Baltimore Ravens were in the middle of a playoff run. Historically, his offenses have not been nearly as good; the Ravens ranked in the top 10 in Football Outsiders' DVOA in one of Cameron's five seasons as coordinator.

Whoever the next coordinator is will have a big job on their hands. The Jets lack many of the most vital pieces on offense, but specifically a quarterback.

We likely won't know who the coordinator will be until we know who the general manager will be. We will have thoughts from the team's end-of-season press conference today, which will kick off at 11:00am ET and will be broadcast on NFL Network.

Here's some more news from around the AFC East.


New England Patriots

Mike Reiss of ESPN Boston says that Patriots guard Logan Mankins is ready for the unconventional blitzes he and the Patriots' offensive line are likely to see.

According to Tom E. Curran of, Patriots head coach Bill Belichick thinks playoff experience can help the Patriots.


New York Jets

Joe Caporoso of delivers a 12-pack of offseason thoughts around the Jets.


Buffalo Bills

According to Tim Graham of The Buffalo News, the Bills have asked for permission to interview Jets defensive coordinator Mike Pettine for their own opening.

Chris Brown of recaps the rapid-fire sequence of events that led to Doug Marrone being hired as head coach.


Miami Dolphins

Andy Cohen of says that Dolphins owner Stephen Ross is trying to give his franchise some stability in keeping steady with GM Jeff Ireland.

Armando Salguero of The Miami Herald gives his opinion of wide receivers Greg Jennings, Dwayne Bowe and Mike Wallace, all of whom have been connected to the Dolphins as potential free-agent signings.


Erik Frenz is the AFC East lead blogger for Bleacher Report. Be sure to follow Erik on Twitter and "like" the AFC East blog on Facebook to keep up with all the updates. Unless specified otherwise, all quotes are obtained firsthand or via team press releases.