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Cowboys fire defensive coordinator Ryan

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By PFW staff

The Cowboys fired defensive coordinator Rob Ryan on Tuesday evening.

Dallas missed the playoffs in 2012 with an 8-8 record. Its defense finished 19th overall, 22nd vs. the run and 19th against the pass. 

“I inherited a team that was 31st in the league in defense and made them better,” Ryan told Tim MacMahon of “I (expletive) made them a hell of a lot better. I’ll be out of work for like five minutes.”

Ryan had one year remaining on his three-year deal that he signed with Dallas prior to the 2011 season. He was previously the defensive coordinator with the Browns and Raiders and was the Patriots’ linebackers coach from 2000-03.

"I want to express my appreciation to Rob for all of his efforts and contributions to the Cowboys over the past two years," said head coach Jason Garrett in a statement. "At this time, the decision has been made to move forward in a different direction philosophically on defense. I have an immense amount of respect for Rob as a person and as a football coach and I wish him and his family the very best."

Ryan’s brother, Rex, is in need of a defensive coordinator with the Jets, but the team reportedly is promoting Dennis Thurman.

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