NFL Preseason: 10 NFL Coaches Already on the Hot Seat

Ray TannockSenior Analyst IAugust 31, 2011

NFL Preseason: 10 NFL Coaches Already on the Hot Seat

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    After a long offseason and a shortened 2011 preseason, we find there are 10 coaches around the league who will enter the 2011 NFL regular season on the hot seat.

    Today, I want to examine each of these coaches and quickly touch on some reasons as to why.

    I will add a small caveat, in that most of these coaches are on the hot seat NOT just because they haven't reached (or won) the Super Bowl yet, to sort of diffuse the obvious right off the bat.


Jack Del Rio, Jacksonville Jaguars

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    I don't think it's surprising Jack Del Rio is already on the hot seat after numerous years of subpar coaching.

    After eight years and a 65-63 record, the organization will be chomping at the bit for the end of the season if Del Rio can't put something together other than a 50-50 team with another 50-50 season.

    It's now or never for Del Rio.

Andy Reid, Philadelphia Eagles

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    Last year's horrible play-calling and curious coaching probably drove the final nail in the coffin a little further for Reid, and considering just how many weapons the organization has afforded Reid this year, it's either Super Bowl or bust.

    Just like a star player on the verge of breakout or bust, Reid will have to come up big to convince the organization to keep him around—especially considering Reid's current quarterback (Michael Vick) is now signed for a longer period of time than Reid himself.

    To be honest, Reid couldn't be in a better position right now. But it will be up to him what he does with it.

Mike Martz, Chicago Bears

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    For those of you who forgot about coordinators, I figured I would pick out a few who stand out to me, and Mike Martz definitely leads the way.

    Look, the guy has had more than enough time to build this Bears defense into a bigger force than they currently are, and if it doesn't happen this year, Chicago can kiss Martz goodbye.

    After mismanaging Greg Olsen and Devin Aromashodu, Martz will have to show he can effectively utilize Earl Bennett, Roy Williams, Johnny Knox, Devin Hester and Jay Cutler.

    I hope he has a good plan.

Chan Gailey, Buffalo Bills

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    He hasn't reached a .500 record since coming to Buffalo, he has shown an inability to win and manage his staff and if Gailey doesn't do a complete 180-degree turn by midseason, I would argue he is out in Buffalo.

    The Bills aren't exactly a team you count on for a stellar season, but they do have enough players in place to buy low on. Gailey needs to show he can get the job done, or it's curtains for the ex-college coaching guru.

Norv Turner, San Diego Chargers

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    The "It's now or never for Turner" saying seems to follow him wherever he goes.

    Turner has been up and down since arriving in San Diego, and he'll once again be put on the hot seat in 2011 if the Chargers can't go further than they have in previous years—and if Turner can't shake the moniker of "Playoff Choker."

Tony Sparano, Miami Dolphins

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    The move to hire this guy was a bad one from the get-go, and Sparano has proven that opinion to be a near dead-call.

    The Dolphins are getting a bit tired of the building probability with low-yielding results, and if Sparano doesn't move his team deeper into the postseason WITH overall team improvements, Miami can kiss him goodbye.

    Just curious, how many Miami fans are pro-Sparano?

Gary Kubiak, Houston Texans

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    Am I the only one who is shocked over the fact that Gary Kubiak is still the head coach in Houston?

    Don't get me wrong, I am not hating on the guy.

    But after 10-plus years, you would think the guy would've done something more than what he has accomplished thus far, which puts Kubiak on the hot seat right out of the gate.

    The Texans have the talent, but can the coaching staff catch up? Stay tuned!

Ken Wisenhunt, Arizona Cardinals

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    I was hesitant to put coach Wisenhunt on this list for fear of fairly being able to gauge his situation since the departure of Kurt Warner.

    Then reality set in.

    A head coach has to show he can manage a team in multiple situations year in and year out, which means Wisenhunt should've done slightly more than he has since his only Super Bowl appearance in Arizona.

    To make the hot seat even steamier, he NOW has a team that seemingly has the potential for a possible postseason run considering the state of the division and who he has to work with this year.

    Wisenhunt had better make strides this year, or I fear the worst for him.

Jim Schwartz, Detroit Lions

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    He hasn't exactly done a terrible job in Detroit, but with all the new weapons,—and current ones, mind you—the Lions' brass may be looking for Schwartz to finally turn this team around the corner.

    Else they might grab a higher-profile coach in the offseason to help cultivate what the Lions do, in fact, have for future development.

    The NFL is a funny business. Just because you have seemingly resurrected a team from the grave doesn't guarantee you a long-term job. The business side would suggest that if Schwartz can't show true, long-term coaching promise, then his value becomes a liability, which could force the Detroit brass to find someone at the end of this season to cultivate the growing team Schwartz helped build.

    It isn't fair, but nothing is in business.

Jason Garrett, Dallas Cowboys

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    I don't care how long Garrett was signed for or who much owner Jerry Jones supports him—when you have the type of team Garrett has at his disposal and fail, you're out in Dallas.

    Kind of how he got the job in the first place.

    Garrett's 5-3 record last year was enough for Jones to "keep" him around, but remember that it is also the bar Jones will expect Garrett to exceed, lest he'll lose his job.

    I say "exceed" because Garrett won five out of eight with a banged-up Cowboys team that did not have the services of lead quarterback Tony Romo.

    Now, with an exciting corps of rookies, a fully healthy offense (including Romo) and a full head of steam, there is zero reason for this team to NOT make a postseason appearance this year—which is exactly where owner Jerry Jones' head is right now.

    AKA, hot seat for Garrett.