ARLINGTON, Texas — Dallas defensive coordinator Rob Ryan was fired Tuesday after his injury-depleted unit struggled in a pair of season-ending losses that kept the Cowboys out of the playoffs for a third straight year.
Ryan was let go a day after running backs coach Skip Peete was fired, and less than a week after owner Jerry Jones said things were going to get "uncomfortable" at team headquarters in nearby Irving.
The Cowboys allowed 5,687 yards, a team record.
Ryan spent two seasons with the Cowboys after he was fired two years into the same job in Cleveland. He didn't hide his displeasure over being let go by the Browns before the Cowboys played them this season. He struck a different tone Tuesday.
"I enjoyed my time here," Ryan told the Dallas Morning News. "I have no hard feelings. But it doesn't matter if I coach here or not. I will find another spot."
Also, Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant had surgery on his broken left index finger after postponing the procedure for the final three games of the season.
Surgery today for RG3
WASHINGTON — Robert Griffin III is having surgery today on a torn ligament in his right knee — and to see if there's a second ligament also needing repair.
Baylor coach Art Briles confirmed to USA Today and the Associated Press that the Redskins rookie has a torn right lateral collateral ligament. He said the surgery also will determine whether Griffin has damaged the ACL in that knee.
A torn LCL requires several months of rehabilitation, possibly extending into training camp and the start of next season. A torn ACL is more severe, typically requiring nine to 12 months of recovery. Griffin tore his ACL in the same knee in 2009.
EAGLES SEARCH: The Eagles added Lovie Smith to their list of candidates to replace Andy Reid as coach. The Eagles will interview Smith om Thursday.
Smith was fired after going 81-63 in nine seasons with Chicago including one Super Bowl trip; the Bears went 10-6 this season but missed the playoffs.
The Eagles also plan to interview Indianapolis offensive coordinator Bruce Arians and Seattle defensive coordinator Gus Bradley this week.
In Cleveland, AP reported that Marc Trestman was meeting with the Browns about their coaching vacancy. Trestman is coach of the CFL's Montreal Alouettes.
And Nick Saban, fresh off of winning his fourth BCS national championship, said he's content at Alabama. There had been speculation that Saban, a former Browns assistant, could have interest in the Cleveland opening.
COWHER WATCH: Former Steelers Super Bowl-winning coach Bill Cowher told Newsday he probably will return to an NFL sideline — eventually. "It would be a challenge," he said of being out of coaching since 2007, "but I think that's probably why I would get back into it, because of the challenge." He said he is not tempted by any of the current openings, nor has he heard from any teams.
CARDINALS TAB GM: The Cardinals promoted Steve Keim to general manager as the search for a new coach goes on. Keim, 40, has worked for the franchise for 14 years and was most recently vice president for player personnel last year.
JAGUARS PICK CALDWELL: The Jaguars agreed to hire Falcons director of player personnel David Caldwell as GM. His first move will be deciding the fate of coach Mike Mularkey. Owner Shad Khan tabbed Caldwell a day after a third interview.
BILLS: New coach Doug Marrone hired his offensive coordinator at Syracuse, Nathaniel Hackett, for the same role in Buffalo, the Buffalo News reported.
JETS: On the day the team fired Tony Sparano as offensive coordinator, owner Woody Johnson and coach Rex Ryan met the media and Johnson reiterated that Ryan isn't going anywhere. "I think Rex is perfect for the New York Jets," Johnson said. "He is 100 percent this team." Sparano, the former Dolphins head coach, is out in New York after one season.
PANTHERS: Running backs coach John Settle, wide receivers coach Fred Graves and linebackers coach Warren Belin were fired following a 7-9 season.
RAIDERS: Linebacker Rolando McClain bonded out of jail on charges of violating rules on car window tint and trying to lie to police about his identity. Authorities in Decatur, Ala., say McClain, 23, was pulled over because of the tint violation. When the former Alabama star was asked to sign a ticket, police say he provided a false name. Officials say McClain posted $1,000 bond.