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Page last updated at 23:32 GMT, Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Broncos sack long-serving coach

Mike Shanahan
Shanahan was the second longest-serving coach in the NFL

Denver Broncos have fired their head coach Mike Shanahan, who had been in charge since 1995 and led them to Super Bowl wins in 1998 and 1999.

The Broncos won eight of their 16 games this season, but failed to make the play-offs after losing their final three fixtures.

Shanahan is the fourth coach to be sacked since the regular season ended.

"This is certainly a difficult decision, but one that I feel must be made," said team owner Pat Bowlen.

"I appreciate the 21 years that Mike has given to the organisation as an assistant and head coach, but a change in our football operations is in the best interests of the Denver Broncos."

Shanahan was the second longest-serving coach in the NFL, behind Tennessee's Jeff Fisher, who was appointed in 1994, when the franchise was known as the Houston Oilers.

Shanahan could now be targeted by the three teams that fired their coaches on Monday - New York Jets, Detroit Lions and Cleveland Browns.

He leaves Denver with an overall win-loss record of 146-89.

Meanwhile, it has been announced that next season's Pro Bowl, the NFL's All-Star game, will take place at Dolphin Stadium in Miami on 31 January 2009, with Super Bowl XLIV being staged at the same venue a week later.

It will be the first time the Pro Bowl has been held outside Hawaii since 1979 - and only the second time the same city has hosted both events.

see also
Jets, Lions & Browns fire coaches
29 Dec 08 |  American Football
Broncos stunned by death of Nash
25 Feb 07 |  American Football
NFL in a nutshell
19 Oct 05 |  American Football
American Football on the BBC
05 Feb 08 |  American Football

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