Image Credit (Andrew Weber /USA Today Sports)
Written by: Nicholas Mullick Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nicholas-mullick-354076184/
With the NFL Draft and Free Agency concluded, teams are starting up their voluntary workouts, OTA’s, and soon will start Mandatory Minicamp. At this time I always ask the question What do I think of every coach on each team and where do I rank them? So I decided before Training Camp begins, why not rank the NFL coaches from worst to first.
32. Las Vegas Raiders - Josh McDaniels
Out of all the candidates that the Raiders interviewed for the head coaching job they decided to hire Josh McDaniels. A coach who had a controversial tenure during his time in Denver and wasn’t even trying to hide the fact that his team was cheating. Even after the whole Spygate scandal erupted McDaniels continued to use the same spying technique. It's not just that, but the whole mishandling of the culture in the Broncos locker room, especially making Jay Cutler angry thus resulting in him being traded. Plus he is a part of Belichick's coaching tree because a bunch of those hires totally worked out am I right (Well except for Flores who got screwed over). This team downgraded at coach and should have retained Rich Bisaccia. I give this hire two years before McDaniels is looking for another job in the NFL.
31. Houston Texans - Lovie Smith
I don’t hate Lovie Smith as he has treated many players, analysts, and his staff well. Plus I love that he was calling season ticket holders which is something I never heard a coach doing. But Smith was not a great coach in Tampa Bay. Plus his tenure in Illinois was not a great coaching tenure at all. I wish him luck, but a few things are on my mind. If the Texans were going to just promote Lovie Smith as the head coach, then why fire David Culley, to begin with? Will the Texans one and done their head coach again? Are they seriously going to wait another year until Josh McCown is available to come in and coach? Why is Jack Easterby still a part of the Texans organization again? The questions are just endless.
30. New Orleans Saints - Dennis Allen
I don’t blame the Saints for promoting Dennis Allen as they were put in a rough spot with Sean Payton suddenly stepping down from coaching in the NFL. Allen knows the systems run and the players so it sounds like a good idea. If it was not for the fact that he had a brutal coaching tenure with the Oakland Raiders. This is a gamble for the Sants, but I don’t see Dennis Allen doing a great job in New Orleans. He is a great defensive coordinator, but I just don’t think he has what it takes to be a head coach in the NFL. He needs to impress with the Saints his first year, because who knows if he will be the head coach for next year as his promotion was last minute.
29. Carolina Panthers - Matt Rhule
Out of all the coaches that I am ranking today, Matt Ruhule to me is #1 on the hot seat. Yes, many will blame injuries and poor QB play for the Panthers troubles, but you can’t deny how bad coaching by Rhule is as well. Especially when it comes to developing players, poor adaptation in the playbook, and abysmal playcalling. The only reason why Rhule was not fired last year was due to the expensive contract the Panthers signed him to. Rhule needs a good season or else he will lose his job.
28. Dallas Cowboys - Mike McCarthy There is no excuse for how disorganized the Dallas Cowboys looked last season. You had a healthy Dak and they still looked like a mess. The problem is not Dak as the Cowboys looked worse when he is out of the starting lineup. If it was not for the Cowboys being in the NFC East, they would be one of if not one of the worst teams in the league. Coaching is a big reason why the Cowboys have struggled. He is absolutely on the hot seat this season.
27. Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Todd Bowles
Still don’t understand why the Buccaneers promoted Todd Bowles over Byron Leftwich. Have they seen how disastrous his coaching tenure with the New York Jets was? I don’t want to hear that lack of talent was a reason why Bowles failed, his coaching tactics were a big contributing factor. Bowles is a good defensive coordinator but is not a good head coach. It would not shock me if Tampa Bay had a disappointing season due to the downgrading at coach.
26. Chicago Bears - Matt Eberflus
I am shocked Eberflus got a head coaching job after that disgraceful performance by the Indianapolis Colts during that Week 18 game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Especially with how poor the defense performed in that game. But because he is a new coach I thought I would not rank him as the worst head coach, but if it was not for the Texans I would have ranked Eberflus as the worst coaching hire from the others.
25. Denver Broncos - Nathaniel Hackett
Hackett would not have been my choice to be the head coach, but I see why the Broncos decided to hire him. They needed an offensive-minded coach to help improve their team and along with Russell Wilson as the QB, the Broncos should definitely improve next year. If I were Hackett I would do my best to retain the knowledge he learned under Matt LaFleur.
24. Minnesota Vikings - Kevin O’Connell
The Vikings had to make a change at coaching and on the executive board after they missed the playoffs. So the Vikings decided to go after a coach in Sean McVay’s tree in Kevin O’Connell. He has shown potential but is a question mark as I wonder how well he will do without McVay as his leader.
23. Miami Dolphins - Mike McDaniel
I am still annoyed that the Miami Dolphins decided to fire Brian Flores as the head coach. Especially as he was doing a good job as the coach with the talent that surrounded him. I mean he showed promise during his time in San Francisco, but the Dolphins seriously downgraded at head coach. They better have made the right move here or Tua Tagovailoa is done as a Dolphin.
22. New York Giants - Brian Daboll
I really like this hire for the New York Giants as Brian Daboll was an excellent offensive coordinator with the Buffalo Bills. I think this is the best signing coaching-wise, hopefully, Daboll can get over the organizational issues left by Dave Gettleman.
21. Jacksonville Jaguars - Doug Pederson
Hopefully, Doug Pederson learned his lesson after the way his tenure with the Philadelphia Eagles ended. Blatantly tanking so his team could get a better draft pick and self-destructing the culture of the locker room. But you can’t take away that Superbowl ring as he was the head coach of that team. The Jaguars better know what they are doing here and not hope that this does not turn out as badly as the whole Urban Meyer thing.
20. Los Angeles Chargers - Brandon Staley
The Chargers heavily improved their defense, Justin Herbert is an excellent player, and the offense got better. One thing that scares me is the coaching staff. I really don’t know about Staley. Some of the play-calling last year was not good, especially in Week 18 of last season. He is not a bad coach, but I just don’t have the confidence that I would have in other coaches ahead of him.
19. Atlanta Falcons - Arthur Smith
Out of all of the coaches in the NFL. I really don’t know what to think of Arthur Smith. The Falcons had a better season than what I thought they did last year, but I don’t know if it is all on coaching or on Matt Ryan being very talented in his final year. This upcoming season will also not answer it as the Falcons are looking to tank next season. It will be interesting to see how Arthur Smith does coaching next season.
18. New York Jets - Robert Saleh
I debated with Saleh and Smith because I really don’t know about either coach. This is coming from a Jets fan as well as I don’t hate Saleh, but there were times last season that made me question Robert Saleh’s tactics. There were good things though with him and he is a thousand times better than Adam Gase was. Saleh is great with players this well and with the growth of talent Saleh has a big opportunity to showcase he is a fantastic coach by getting this team to the playoffs.
17. Arizona Cardinals - Kliff Kingsbury
Would be higher on the list if it was not for Kingsbury being terrible in the second half of the season. If it was not for that, I would have put him as a Top 16 head coach, but I can’t. If it was me in charge of the Cardinals I would see how he does this year and he yet again struggles in the second half, but oh yeah the Cardinals signed him to an extension for some reason.
16. Seattle Seahawks - Pete Carroll
Look I will always have a soft spot for Pete Caroll (Even though his tenure with the New York Jets was a disaster). But I got to say, It is time. The Seahawks blew it up by trading Russell Wilson and releasing LB Bobby Wagner. Pete Caroll is turning 71 years old in September and he is not going to be the coach long-term for the Seahawks.
15. Detroit Lions - Dan Campbell
Now, many will view this ranking as being too high and I understand. But this has been the most hyped I have been in a Lions coaching squad since Jim Caldwell was the coach. Dan Campbell is a fantastic coach and the Lions won a lot more games than many thought due to the lack of talent their team had. Look at how passionate he is in press conferences and in the locker room. The players love him and it shows in every locker post-game. I am excited to see the Lions play next season and see how they have grown in another year with Campbell as the coach. Man, I wish the Jets hired him, but they decided to hire Adam Gase instead.
14. Indianapolis Colts - Frank Reich
I had Frank Reich as a Top 10 Coach last year, but after that disgraceful week 18 performance by the Indianapolis Colts, I had to drop him down. Coaching was a big issue in that game and the Colts absolutely should have been a playoff team. I have hope the Colts can rebound as overall Reich is not a terrible coach, but Reich needs to make the playoffs this year in order to secure his job for next year.
13. Washington Commanders - Ron Rivera
Might be a bit high for Ron Rivera here, but I have always had a soft spot for him as he was an excellent coach in Carolina. Plus I will give him some extra points due to the team he is coaching and how toxic the ownership of Dan Snyder has been. It's not good when an owner has two financial books and is stealing money from the entire league. Also if things go the right way and rumors are true regarding votes being counted in removing Dan Snyder, then he may be forced to sell the team.
12. Philadelphia Eagles - Nick Sirianni
I had my doubts about Sirianni last season, but he turned out to be a strong coach for the Eagles. Definitely managed a culture better than Doug Pederson did during his blatant tank job in his last game with the Eagles. But Sirianni made some nice adjustments, and play calling in his rookie season as the coach. The question is if he can keep this up for the next season.
11. Cleveland Browns - Kevin Stefanski
Stefanski has been the best coach the Browns have had since they returned to the league in 1999. His coaching has contributed to the Browns being better and did not make it this season mostly due to the team being injured. Stefanski now will have Deshaun Watson as his starting QB. Along with Watson, the Browns should improve next season as they have a good coaching staff but just need consistency at the QB spot (even though they had that with Baker before he got hurt).
10. Cincinnati Bengals - Zac Taylor
If any coach needed a strong season last year it was Zac Taylor. I originally was not a Zac Taylor guy when he came in as the coach, but this season he impressed me and adapted very well. Taylor even changed up his schemes that were not working at the beginning of the season. Taylor last year showcased that he is a great coach, the question is if he can keep this up.
9. Green Bay Packers - Matt LaFleur
I really debated leaving LaFleur out of the Top 10 but decided against it. For the few years, he has coached he has had multiple 10-win seasons. He even cleaned up the issues when Mike McCarthey was here as the coach. If only he can coach a little better in the playoffs, but overall he is a strong coach.
8. Tennessee Titans - Mike Vrabel
Vrabel is a great coach as he led this Titans team to the 1st seed last year. Heck, he won the NFL Coach of the Year award in 2021. Also on a side note can we stop saying that Vrabel is a Belichick disciple. Yes, he was a player in his team he never coached with him.
7. San Francisco 49ers - Kyle Shanahan
Even though Shanahan has a reputation for blowing games as the coach, you can’t deny how great of a coach he is. He is great with his schemes, player development, and even took this team to a Super Bowl. Hopefully, Trey Lance develops and he does not choke games because Shanahan is a great coach for the 49ers to have.
6. Buffalo Bills - Sean McDermott
McDermott is the best coach the Bills have had in a very long time. I knew the Bills had something with McDermott as a coach when he coached teams with a mediocre level of talent and coached them to more wins than they did. Once Josh Allen got drafted this team has gotten better. I would love for McDermott to do what he can and get past the Chiefs because they have lately been this team's kryptonite.
5. Baltimore Ravens - Jim Harbaugh
I will make this simple. Despite all the issues the Ravens had last year with injuries and being forced to play scrubs at certain positions, Harbaugh’s coaching helped get this team to more wins than they did. Harbaugh is definitely one of the Top 5 coaches in the NFL Today.
4. Mike Tomlin - Pittsburgh Steelers
I will continue saying this, but I was wrong about Mike Tomlin. I am a man to admit I was wrong as Tomlin was a big reason why the Steelers made the playoffs. He and Brian Flores on the same coaching staff terrify me and It will be interesting how the Steelers develop Kenny Pickett. They better start winning playoff games soon, but they should be lucky they had Tomlin keep a cancerous locker room together and win the number of games they had. But a majority of those cancerous players are gone.
3. Sean McVay - Los Angeles Rams
Easily the best coach in the NFC today. McVay is the definition of a genius at his age (36 years old). He has great strategy, tactics, player development/management, and now he has a Super Bowl ring to go along with it. Especially as the Rams got into one properly. I will never forgive the NFL for Superbowl 53 and that disgraceful NFC Championship game where the Saints got robbed.
2. Andy Reid, Kansas City Chiefs
There was a time that I thought Andy Reid would never get a Super Bowl ring, but that changed with the Chiefs. He has a deep coaching tree, manages a culture well, and is a solid play-caller. Well when he is not choking and blowing a lead, but that has not been done since losing to the Titans in the playoffs m=when Mariota was the QB. He is one of the best coaches in the NFL today and I really debated putting him at number one if it was not for one obvious man….
1. Bill Belichick New England Patriots
Look, I may be a Jets fan and hate what he has done to this franchise for many years, but there is no denying he is one of the best coaches in NFL History. Even though he has a shady and dark tactic with the way he coaches. The New England Patriots are a playoff team and I don’t see how Bill loses his job unless he resigns or retires.