Jeff Fisher on his exit as Rams coach: ‘Bottom line is I didn’t win’
Jeff Fisher did not believe he was in the Rams’ plans for the move into a new stadium in 2019, but he thought he would make it at least through Week 15 of this season with a chance to finish it out.
Fisher, who was fired as coach last Monday, made those revelations during a Fox television interview that was taped last week and aired Sunday.
“Didn’t win enough games and the organization has a much bigger picture,” Fisher said. “And I don’t think I was ever part of seeing the new stadium.”
Fisher compiled a 31-45-1 record in four-plus seasons with the Rams, who are scheduled to move into a new Inglewood stadium in 2019. The Rams were 4-9 this season before Fisher was fired. They fell to 4-10 after last Thursday’s loss to the Seattle Seahawks under interim coach John Fassel.
“Bottom line is I didn’t win,” Fisher said. “You know, I didn’t win enough games. And, you know, [in] a new market that’s important, and I’ll take responsibility for that.”
Fisher and the Rams reached agreement on a controversial two-year contract extension before or early in the season. The deal did not come to light until Dec. 4, a few hours before kickoff against the New England Patriots. The Rams never publicly acknowledged the extension while Fisher was the coach.
“It was never my place to announce the extension, so it somehow got out,” he said. “And so then that became an issue. None of it was handled appropriately, in my opinion. In this day and age, the successful teams in the National Football League are tightknit. They work together. And they stay quiet. They don’t leak things. And that was a frustration of mine.”
Fisher said he had “no idea” that he was going to be fired until Kevin Demoff, the Rams’ chief operating officer and vice-president for football operations, informed him the day after the Rams’ 42-14 loss to the Atlanta Falcons.
“I just recently had signed an extension and knew things were getting tough,” he said. “I knew that, but I didn’t anticipate this. I always thought that if, depending on what happens the last three weeks, that there may be that potential with the season being over.
“But I was a little caught off guard with the short week.”
Fisher reiterated that a text message he received after “a really good conversation” with Hall of Fame running back Eric Dickerson made him believe that they had reached an understanding regarding Dickerson’s criticism of Fisher and the team and his presence on the sideline.
The decision to trade up and draft quarterback Jared Goff with the No. 1 overall pick was a “unanimous” choice by the organization,” Fisher said. It was also an organizational decision not to rush Goff into the starting lineup, and that it was determined before the Rams’ 9-6 victory over the New York Jets in Week 10 that Goff would start the next week against Miami.
“Franchise quarterback, no doubt,” Fisher said. “He’s going to be fine.”
The Rams ranked last in the NFL in offense in 2015 and are on track for the same finish this season.
“I have to take responsibility from a coaching side, we just didn’t get it done,” he said. “When you’re 32nd in the league in offense all year, there’s an issue.”
Fisher would like to coach again.
Asked if he had a perfect scenario for the future, he said, “I want a chance to play the Rams.”
Follow Gary Klein on Twitter @latimesklein
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