Andy Reid Building Impressive Branch of the Coaching Tree

Cody Swartz@cbswartz5Senior Writer IJanuary 27, 2009

Former 49ers Hall of Fame coach Bill Walsh is often seen as the father of the NFL coaching tree. Under his tutelage, five head coaches have gone on to earn head coaching jobs, where they have combined to win seven Super Bowl titles. Two of those coaches—Mike Shanahan and George Seifert—have won it twice.

Marty Schottenheimer, Bill Parcells, and Paul Brown have also compiled pretty impressive coaching trees.


What about Andy Reid?


Reid is building his own branch of the tree, and a pretty impressive one at that.


Three of Reid's former assistants are now head coaches, and several others are working their way up to a future head coaching job. Technically, Reid's tree can be traced back to Mike Holmgren and then to Bill Walsh, but none of Reid's current successors had worked under Holmgren.


Brad Childress, the offensive coordinator of the 2004 NFC Champion Eagles, coached the Vikings to the NFC North title and a playoff berth this past season.


John Harbaugh, Reid's former special-teams coordinator, led the Ravens to an 11-5 mark in his debut season as head coach. In the playoffs, Harbaugh's Ravens won two road games before losing a tough battle to the Steelers in the AFC Championship Game.


And Steve Spagnuolo, former linebackers coach for the Eagles and defensive coordinator of the world champion N.Y. Giants last season, just recently landed a head coaching job with the St. Louis Rams.


Other top-notch assistants who worked under Reid include Leslie Frazier and Ron Rivera.


Frazier currently serves as the assistant head coach and defensive coordinator of the Vikings. He made his start as the Eagles' defensive backs coach from 1999 through 2002, coaching eight Pro Bowlers in just four seasons.


Frazier was rumored to have been a candidate for the Broncos or Browns position, but has since announced he will return to Minnesota for the 2009 season. Rivera, the former linebackers coach for the Eagles, is the defensive coordinator for the San Diego Chargers, who were this past season's AFC West Champions.


Nearly all of Reid's former assistants have gone on to success with other teams. Spagnuolo earned a ring with last year's Giants, as he outcoached Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels in the Super Bowl. Rivera took the Bears to the Super Bowl the year before, as the team's defensive coordinator.


Frazier was the defensive backs for the Colts in their Super Bowl win over Rivera and the Bears. And both of Reid's former coordinators who have gone on to become head coaches were in the playoffs last season.


Reid is the only head coach in the league to have three of his former assistants as current head coaches in the NFL. Dungy had three, but has since retired. And Mike Holmgren had four (Reid's three plus Reid himself), but he retired as well.


The next closest to Reid is Bill Belichick, who has had a total of three in the NFL—Mangini, Crennel, and McDaniels—as well as Charlie Weis of the Fighting Irish (although only McDaniels is a current NFL head coach).


Other current assistants of Andy Reid who could be hot coaching prospects in the future include defensive-backs coach Sean McDermott and linebackers coach Bill Shuey.