NFL Coaching Trends We Expect to Continue in 2012
Trends emerge throughout the NFL every year and that logic holds true even among the ranks of its coaching fraternity.
Coaches fall into patterns that can be predicted and prognosticated.
So what coaching trends are set to continue in 2012?
The good, the bad and the ugly are all represented.
Let's start in New York with the most outspoken coach in the NFL, and no I'm not talking about Tom Coughlin...
5. Rex Ryan Will Be Outspoken All Year
Rex Ryan is not a quiet coach by NFL standards, or by any standards really.
He speaks his mind, lays out his feelings and makes sure friends and enemies alike know what is going on inside his head.
He has no problem creating a media frenzy by adding Tim Tebow to his QB depth chart.
What will Ryan's next verbal chess move be in 2012?
No one is certain, but it will be one of many.
4. Norv Turner Will Remain on the Hot Seat
Turner may have led the Chargers to three consecutive playoff berths from 2007-2009, but after back-to-back mediocre seasons the fanbase is restless.
Many thought last season was Turner's final straw, but as it turns out he is back for another crack at it in 2012.
With every game that passes questions about Turner's job security will loom.
Will a slow start be enough to finally begin a new era in San Diego?
How about a middling record hovering around .500?
As long as Turner remains in charge the scrutiny and skepticism will stay alongside of him.
3. Mike Shanahan Will Find a 1,000 Yard Rusher
Mike Shanahan's offensive system can turn the most mediocre of running backs into world beaters.
Don't believe me?
Players like Olandis Gary, Mike Anderson, Reuben Droughns and Tatum Bell have all rushed for 1,000 yards in a season under Shanahan.
The point is that Shanahan knows how to get production out of the running back position and will find that magic in a bottle yet again in 2012.
With a consistent quarterback in place in Robert Griffin III the Redskins will be able to utilize the offense Shanahan wants, and that will mean more production out of the backfield.
Will it be Tim Hightower or Roy Helu?
Or will Evan Royster be the one to step up?
No matter who seizes the opportunity, Shanahan will get the most out of them.
2. Andy Reid Will Quietly Mold Young Quarterbacks
Andy Reid takes a lot of flack for not having won a Super Bowl.
He also deals with the constant pressure of being on the hot seat, but what he is not often enough commended for is his ability to groom and develop young quarterback talent.
Kevin Kolb became a hot commodity in an Eagles uniform.
Donovan McNabb became an All-Pro under Reid's guidance.
And Michael Vick has become a true quarterback since landing in Philly.
The lesson to be learned?
Andy Reid can coach quarterbacks and the young guys behind Vick are in a perfect situation to learn.
Trent Edwards may already be a lost cause, but Mike Kafka and Nick Foles have bright futures ahead of them as long as they stay in the city of Brotherly Love.
1. Jim Harbaugh Will Continue Feuds and Possibly Start New Ones
Jim Harbaugh was a great catalyst for the San Francisco 49ers turnaround in 2011.
He simply chose not to make many friends along his path to the top.
Harbaugh had a near physical encounter with Detroit Lions head coach Jim Schwartz after the teams met in Week 5 and had their infamous handshake.
He also continued a bitter rivalry with NFC West division rival and former Pac-10 counterpart, Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll.
So who is next on Harbaugh's list?
Will he start a feud with Jeff Fisher or Ken Whisenhunt within his own division?
Maybe look to start an inter-conference rivalry at some point in the regular season?
Even if a new rival does not emerge, there is a huge showdown with Schwartz and the Lions in primetime to look forward to in Week 2.
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