One's job is repeatedly under threat, the other's seat is made of ice. However, there is very little seemingly between both of these coaches as they approach the Super Bowl this year. At different times of the season, both sides faced a substantial amount of doubt about their team's abilities to even reach the big game.
Coughlin has overcome the loss of key offensive pieces and a slew of injuries to his defense to win the NFC championship, while Belichick's roster has looked like a game of sunday football each week when you don't know who is going to turn up or not.
Initially, Coughlin lost Terrell Thomas, Kevin Boss, Steve Smith and Prince Amukamara, while Belichick decided to let go of Ty Warren, Leigh Bodden, James Sanders Brandon Meriweather and, to a lesser extent, Albert Haynesworth.
Belichick has instead got the best out of the poor defensive talent at his disposal while relying heavily on his offense to carry the team. It isn't just having Brady and Gronkowski on the field however, Belichick along with Bill O'Brien have expertly put in place their matchup based offense that is unbelievably difficult to match up with.
How he handles the Rob Gronkowski situation this weekend could prove to be the deciding factor in adding to his Super Bowl collection.
For Coughlin, he has had to rebuild more than redirect as the offensive line has continually been in flux and his young receivers have taken time to gel after the loss of Smith and Boss. Jake Ballard was promoted internally to replace Boss while everyone can see the success that Cruz has had in place of Smith.
Defensively is where Coughlin will need to separate himself today however. Getting the most out of the talent available to him has been the staple of Coughlin and Perry Fewell's defense this year. They overcame the loss of Terrell Thomas and Prince Amukamara early in the season by relying on their depth at safety.
While Amukamara is back now, it will be interesting to see how the team uses their three safeties to alter the defensive packages on the field.
Instead of getting rid of Osi Umenyiora, Coughlin assured the defensive end and installed the three defensive end front while also moving Mathias Kiwanuka to linebacker permanently prior to the season. Instead of starting lesser talents, Coughlin's ability to incorporate talent on his defense has been a major asset so far this season.
Whether that talent can stand up to the Patriots' offense tonight will largely be determined on how Bill Belichick approaches the game.
If Belichick is handcuffed by a crocked Gronkowski, then the advantage falls into Coughlin's hands, however without Gronkowski, even Bill Belichick may not be able to make his offense function with the talent available to him.
Cian Fahey is a professional blogger for Irishcentral who also tweets @Cianaf