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Report: Washington fires Jay Gruden, hire Bill Callahan as interim head coach

Washington’s disastrous start to the 2019 season has claimed head coach Jay Gruden. He was fired Monday morning. We break down the implications of the decision.

Washington head coach Jay Gruden walks off the field after the team’s game against the New England Patriots at FedExField. Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The Washington NFL team has fired head coach Jay Gruden, according to multiple reports. The team has named assistant head coach and offensive line coach Bill Callahan as interim head coach, per Ian Rapoport. The team dropped to 0-5 on Sunday with a 33-7 loss to the New England Patriots. Following the game, Gruden offered a fairly prescient quotation, saying, “If the key works Monday I’ll keep working.”

It’s been a disaster of a season for the team, and Gruden’s future has been up for debate dating back to the beginning of the season. The team invested a first round pick in quarterback Dwayne Haskins, but was expected to take their time in his development. Case Keenum got the start the first four games, but was benched in Week 4 for Haskins. However, Colt McCoy got the start over both Keenum and Haskins in Week 5.

There has been a lot of talk about how much owner Dan Snyder wanted to draft Haskins, and late last week a report came out that Gruden had not wanted Haskins on his team. Given his decision to start McCoy on Sunday, one has to wonder if that was the final straw that pushed Snyder to order the firing.

The only notable change that might happen is Haskins getting a shot at starting. From a fantasy perspective, Terry McLaurin and Chris Thompson remain the only truly notable fantasy options. Both remain solid starts. The team might run the ball more, according to one report, but it’s hard to see that making much difference.

From a betting perspective, don’t expect much to change. Washington faces the Miami Dolphins in Week 6, and this will be one of the only times — if not the only time — they’re favored in a game. DraftKings Sportsbook had them as 3.5-point favorites prior to the firing. The line likely won’t change much.

Odds and lines subject to change. See website for actual odds.
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