NFL fans are familiar with the phrase “coaches are hired to be fired.” While that may have some truth to it, a better synopsis of an NFL coach’s job would be something along the lines of “coaches are hired to win.”
After all, when a new NFL head coach signs a contract, neither the coach himself nor his new team’s management is thinking about when his employment will be terminated.
Nonetheless, some coaches see their time at the helm painfully drag out to a bitter, overdue end. On the other hand, some coaches see their opportunities come to an abrupt and often premature end.
After the 2012 NFL season, fans will see each of these scenarios play out. For example, Andy Reid’s tenure in Philadelphia will likely end after 14 years and no Super Bowl rings. And although Rex Ryan has done nothing to aid the case that he should keep his job, he will ultimately be a scapegoat for Jets general manager Mike Tannenbaum. And how many coaches have the Raiders gone through since their last Super Bowl appearance?
Struggling is not synonymous with losing. There are a lot of struggling NFL coaches. Some of them are struggling to win more than a handful of games. Some are struggling to build contenders out of nothing. Some are struggling to get over the hump and go deep into the playoffs.
Regardless of what has happened, there are a few struggling head coaches who deserve at least one more year to prove that they have what it takes to build a contending football team.