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Reeves beats owner to the punch

Updated: December 11, 2003, 5:41 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

FLOWERY BRANCH, Ga. -- Dan Reeves was fired abruptly by the Atlanta Falcons on Wednesday with three games left in a disappointing season.

Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips will take over as head coach for the rest of the season.

Falcons owner Arthur Blank told Reeves -- the sixth-winningest coach in NFL history -- that he would be fired at the end of the season, but asked him to coach the final three games. Reeves asked to be let go immediately.

"When Arthur told me ...

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