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Lions fire special teams coordinator Joe Marciano

NFL.com | Updated: 2018-11-08 06:00:28

The Detroit Lions' 3-5 start has sparked change among the team's coaching staff.

The Lions fired Joe Marciano, who had served as Detroit's special teams coordinator since 2015. His replacement was not immediately named.

"Tonight I spoke to Joe and informed him of my decision to relieve him of his responsibilities with our team," Lions head coach Matt Patricia said in a statement. "I appreciate Joe's leadership of our special teams units over the last three and a half seasons and have great respect for his many years of service as a coach in the National Football League. On behalf of our team and the entire coaching staff, I want to personally thank Joe for his commitment to the Detroit Lions and wish him and his family the best moving forward."

Patricia told reporters Tuesday that assistant special teams coach Devin Fitzsimmons will handle "the majority of the role" at special teams coordinator but other coaches will help out, too. "It'll be collective group effort," Patricia said.

The Lions have been struggling with aspects of their special teams during their rocky start. Detroit is giving up a league-worst 20.6 yards per punt and ranks ninth in most yards allowed per kickoff (25.1). It also ranks 13th in average yards per punt (45.4). In addition, the Lions have been flagged 14 times on special teams this season.

Pro Football Focus grades Detroit's special teams unit, which gave up a 24-yard punt return to Minnesota's Marcus Sherels during their 24-9 loss on Sunday, No. 27 in the NFL.

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