ANAHEIM, CALIF., DEC. 28 -- Ending weeks of speculation that John Robinson would quit or be fired as coach of the Los Angeles Rams, owner Georgia Frontiere today announced that Robinson will remain on the job for years to come.
Robinson, about to finish the fourth year of a five-year contract, will be given a contract extension during the offseason, Frontiere said in a statement.
"I have nothing but the deepest respect for John's abilities," Frontiere said. "I'm certain that he is just as committed as I am to bringing our fans a championship team next year."
The statement also said "provisions will be made for the coach to have greater input in the draft, and in the selection and signing of Plan B free agents."
Robinson said he was glad the situation had been resolved. He is the winningest coach in Rams history at 76-60 during his eight years as coach. But this year, the Rams are 5-10 entering Monday night's season finale at New Orleans.
The Rams, considered strong contenders for the Super Bowl after making the NFC title game last season, failed to qualify for the playoffs for only the second time under Robinson.
A little more than halfway through the season, rumors began circulating that Robinson's job was in jeopardy. He would not confirm that speculation, but he did admit differences had started to develop.
"For most of the eight years, we've been successful and done a lot of things right," Robinson said. "This year, because of the disappointing performance by our team, friction obviously has been caused."
Robinson informed the players of the news right after practice and cheers were heard.
"John Robinson has good relations with the players. He's a man you can talk to, a man you respect," eight-year defensive tackle Doug Reed said.
"It's a positive move for the organization and we're all excited about it," 15-year offensive tackle Jackie Slater said. " . . . He's a class guy, a class head coach."