Buffalo Bills: Taking a Look at Buffalo's 2013 Coaching Carousel
A week after losing a depressingly bad game against the Colts at Lucas Oil Stadium, the Bills are once again staring an early vacation in the face. The game against Indianapolis was their most important game in recent years in terms of playoff implications and in true Buffalo fashion, they choked the opportunity away.
Gailey was not the sole reason why Buffalo lost on Sunday, but his coaching blunders did add up as a part of the losing formula. A formula that Gailey has concocted to perfection in his three years with the Bills.
The Bills head coach always finds a knack to get away from what is working in an effort to stick to his original gameplan. At times his offensive creativity provides the team with exciting plays, while other times his cute play-calling leads to bone-headed gaffes by his starting quarterback.
After 47 games with Buffalo, Gailey is sporting an impressive 14-29 record. If you want to break that down in a quirky way, he has almost the equivalent of two 0-16 seasons in less than three seasons of work. Good stuff.
Gailey and general manager Buddy Nix have brought in quality talent upgrades all over the Buffalo roster, but the results have remained the same.
The fact that Gailey allowed C.J. Spiller to remain on the sideline and not have a single carry over the final 13 minutes of a one-score game on Sunday is the perfect example of why Bills' fans are at their wit's end.
The Hot Names: Chip Kelly and Perry Fewell
Oregon Ducks head coach Chip Kelly is as hot a coaching prospect as Jim Harbaugh was when he left Stanford for the San Francisco 49ers job two years ago.
Kelly has shown the ability to get the most of his players (especially on offense), and, as an offensive innovator, to confuse opposing defenses with multiple looks and adjustments. Love it or hate it, the Oregon spread attack is among the elite offenses in all of college football.
The fourth-year coach was reportedly the favorite to land the Tampa Bay Buccaneers job last year but backed out at the last second to return to the Ducks with national title aspirations.
With the Ducks out of contention for a title this year, Kelly will once again have NFL dollars being flashed in front of his eyes. The problem is where does he land?
You can cross him off your list.
Perry Fewell, ironically, is a guy that Buffalo could have had as their current coach. Fewell was the interim head coach after Jauron was fired midseason in 2009.
Many around Orchard Park felt that Fewell had done enough to warrant consideration for the job, but it never seemed like the Bills were that interested in his services. Fewell instead "settled" for the New York Giants' defensive coordinator gig and won a Super Bowl ring. Not a terrible tradeoff, I'd say.
Fewell has a good shot at becoming a head coach in the NFL this offseason, but the bridge has already been burned in Buffalo. Carolina or Cleveland could be calling his name though.
The TV Personalities: Jon Gruden and Bill Cowher
The Jon Gruden and Bill Cowher rumors appear every offseason, spread around by teary-eyed fans of horrible football teams who are hopeful of a magical turnaround.
Cowher's name came up in talks for the Bills job back in 2009, but he politely declined even an interview with general manager Buddy Nix and CFO Russ Brandon. Cowher did however point Nix and Brandon towards his longtime friend Chan Gailey.
Cruel and unusual move from Cowher.
He'll likely remain at his cushy CBS pregame job, unless the Panthers come sniffing around. He is from that area, so the shoe fits in that regard.
Gruden is an interesting choice. He has always been fond of Buffalo, having grown up in the like-minded area of Cleveland, Ohio. He is that blue-collar, emotions-on-your-sleeve kind of guy whom fans of the team have been hoping for since the mid-90s.
Gruden, like Cowher, won't leave the comfort of his booth to pursue any job that doesn't fit his pedigree. Buffalo isn't on that list of teams.
Back to Reality: Marty Mornhinweg and Ray Horton
Marty Mornhinweg's first stint as a head coach with the Detroit Lions was a well-documented disaster. However, he is a good coach who will eventually get another shot at a top gig.
Mornhinweg totally fits the type of move that this current Buffalo team would make, because he would be cheap and can do some interesting things on offense.
If Chan Gailey is let go and Andy Reid is fired from Philadelphia, then I wouldn't be surprised to see Mornhinweg's name on the list of candidates for the Buffalo job.
Ray Horton has done wonders for the Arizona Cardinals in his two years as defensive coordinator.
For a team that has virtually no offense, the Cardinals have been in a ton of close games this year because of how well their defense has played. Horton has coached up his young defense to a high level, and I know Bills fans would be happy to have a little of that toughness in the locker room.
Horton should be on Buffalo's wish list.
The Sad Truth: Chan Gailey
Gailey shouldn't be the head coach in Buffalo after his poor results for the third year in a row. However, there is a feeling in my gut that we will see Gailey pacing the sidelines for a fourth season in 2013.
Back in October, there was a twitter conversation between a few Buffalo-based journalists that were wondering how long Gailey's contract was.
Most assumed that it was for three years, the norm for Buffalo, but a few mentioned that they heard it was a four-year deal. In doing research, I could not find exact details about his contract, which doesn't inspire any confidence that the team will move on from their coach.
He has lost the fans. He has lost his players. And worst of all, he is lost on how to coach in today's NFL.