Bryan Cox Sr. is moving to Houston in a couple of weeks because his wife has business there and he’s currently unemployed.
“So I’m going to be a stay-at-home dad for six months or however long it is ’til I get a job,” said Cox Sr., the father of Carolina Panthers rookie defensive end Bryan Cox Jr.
Cox Sr. was Atlanta’s defensive line coach the past three seasons. But he and defensive coordinator Richard Smith were fired three days after the Falcons blew a 25-point lead to New England in Super Bowl LI.
The Falcons’ defense gave up 31 consecutive points and 546 yards – including a record 466 passing yards by Tom Brady – in the worst collapse in Super Bowl history. But Falcons officials claimed the firings were not in response to the defensive meltdown against the Patriots.
“You go from your unit playing really well in the Super Bowl and sacking the quarterback five times and having (nine) quarterback hits ... and (three) days later you get fired,” Cox Sr. said this week during a phone interview. “I wasn’t given an answer to why I was fired. I was left to go back and kind of play stuff over.
“And the only thing I can come up with is the combine incident that kind of led to it.”
Cox Sr. shoved an Arizona Cardinals scout at the combine last year during a disagreement over access to a prospect during the interview process. He later apologized.
Cox Sr., a three-time Pro Bowler during a 12-year career, said he plans to try to lose weight and spend time with his 8-year-old daughter in Houston until he lines up his next job.
“I don’t know why I was fired. Wasn’t given an answer. It doesn’t even much matter anymore,” he said. “You move on. I ain’t got no hard feelings. I’ve got people in that building I love. I’ve got people in that building I love a little less.”