Every year about this time, disgruntled fans beg for changes in their underperforming NFL franchises. The proverbial “hot seat” is placed under any head coach or general manager whose team is not living up to expectations.
While most fans and media alike are quick to give the hook to the current coach, the next man up is not always the best answer. Everyone is always under the impression the franchise will have a drastic turnaround right away with the “right” head coach in place.
Remember when Coach Steve Spurrier was just what the Washington Redskins needed? Dave Campo will bring the “Cowboy” way back! Nick Saban is the kind of coach that will make Coach Shula proud and will lead the Dolphins to the Super Bowl.
Finding the right mix is a matter of organizational structure and having the right players in place. The new head coach must find the perfect balance between being a teacher and an authoritarian. Great head coaches can come from anywhere. Ravens head coach John Harbaugh was a special-teams coordinator. Did anybody in Atlanta even know who Mike Smith was when he was tabbed as the head man?
The “sexy” or “flashy” hire is not always the best move. Sometimes the decisions work, sometimes not. But with millions of dollars on the line, careers and legacies in flux and whole cities counting on their teams’ return to glory, hiring the next head coach is not a decision that can be taken lightly.
Here is a list of 15 candidates that will get interviews with NFL teams looking for head coaches this offseason. Some of the names are retreads, while others are hot new up-and-comers who are looking for a chance to be the “next big thing.”