Tom Coughlin: Why He Is a Top 10 Head Coach in the NFL

Kyle McMorrowCorrespondent IApril 12, 2011

LANDOVER, MD - JANUARY 02:  Head coach Tom Coughlin of the New York Giants encourages his players in the fourth quarter against the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field on January 2, 2011 in Landover, Maryland. The Giants won the game 17-14.  (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Win McNamee/Getty Images

The coaching carousel is something that is constantly spinning from year to year in the NFL; one season you're hot, the next you're on the hot seat.

In a market like New York, that pressure is multiplied 10 times over, something Giants Head Coach Tom Coughlin is no stranger to.

Coughlin has fallen from Super Bowl hero to next on the chopping block, but has his recent failure to bring his team back to the promised land compromised his coaching status?

Absolutely not.

Let's go back to 2007, when the Giants were 0-2 and Coughlin's old school coaching approach was as exciting as a Monday morning. The Giants were down 17-3 to the Washington Redskins at halftime, and the season had looked like it was over before the bye week had even arrived.

With no signs of hope heading into the second half, New York pulled out one of the most inspiring and uplifting comebacks of the year and defeated the Redskins 24-17.

Fate? Perhaps.

Luck? Maybe so.

But Coughlin began changing his approach in his team's time of need, and evolved with the times to lead the Giants to their first Super Bowl victory in over 15 years—minus their Pro Bowl running back Tiki Barber who had retired the year before.

According to ESPN's head coach power rankings, Coughlin is in sixth place behind four Super Bowl champions and Philadelphia Eagles Head Coach Andy Reid. This is spot on, as his long-term success has been recognized and not blurred by recent shortcomings.

Since 2007, the Giants have amassed an overall record of 30-18, a respectable number unless you coach in New York. The one knock everyone seems to criticize Coughlin for is the fact that most of those 18 losses occurred during the second half of the season.

The late season losses have caused the Giants to fall from post season play over the last couple of years, thus questioning Coughlin's ability to lead. While his team may have stumbled of late, the big picture overwhelmingly makes the case for Coughlin as one of the greats.

Currently, there are only six coaches in the NFL who have won a Super Bowl ring as a head coach.

Since 2007, the Giants 30-18 record ranks them ahead of Mike McCarthy's 27-21 Packers, and just behind the Patriots, Steelers and Saints. New Orleans is just two games better at 32-16.

If Coughlin has stacked up to the league's elite over the years, why should he not be mentioned in the same breath?

The New York Giants would be wise to allow Coughlin to remain the head coach for as long as he'd like to. The players support him publicly, and the fans appreciate his hard work and attention to detail.

With the coaching carousel constantly moving around in the NFL, the Giants should be grateful for the stability he has brought with him. 

Coughlin faces more scrutiny for his job than perhaps any other coach in the NFL and as his contract draws to an end the questions of an extension keep rising. 

The way in which he has handled the New York media, combined with his success and leadership, makes him a top ten coach in the league.

If anyone disagrees, good luck to the next guy—he's going to need it.