Is Bill Parcells the Greatest Football Mind of All Time?

Chad HensleyCorrespondent IJanuary 1, 2009

As Bill Parcells ponders whether he should opt out of his current contract as the Miami Dolphins' Executive Vice President of Football Operations, there has to be a lot of NFL general managers and head coaches who are nervous.


Parcells is a winner, and owners want their teams to be winners, even if that means some serious house cleaning.

The Tuna has made some less-than-popular decisions when it comes to accepting and leaving jobs. He does wear out his welcome sometimes, but there is no denying that his football philosophy transcends time, decade-to-decade, September through January.

His track record might be the greatest ever when it comes to taking teams with little-to-no success, and making them winners.

New York Giants

In 1984 and 1985, Parcells (his second and third season with the New York Giants) led his team to consecutive playoff appearances for the first time since 1961-1963 seasons.  

In 1986, the Giants won the Super Bowl under Parcells, his first.

In 1990, the Giants won another Super Bowl, but this was probably one of Parcells' finest coaching jobs.

Late in the 1990 season, the Giants lost their starting Quarterback, Phill Simms, to injury, and he was replaced by Jeff Hostetler, who "drove the bus" for Parcells through the playoffs to the Giants' second Super Bowl victory in five years.

New England Patriots

After a couple of years off due to health reasons, Parcells became the head coach of the New England Patriots in 1993.

In his second year with the Patriots, he took them to a 10-6 record and their first playoff appearance in eight years.

In 1996, Parcells led the Patriots to the Super Bowl, but lost to the Green Bay Packers.

Following that Super Bowl, Parcells wanted to be released from the Patriots after having disagreements with owner Robert Kraft. 

The issue at hand was that Parcells wanted to have more control over the personnel decisions, leading to this famous line.

"If they want you to cook the dinner, at least they ought to let you shop for some of the groceries."

The Patriots ended up brokering a deal with the New York Jets that allowed Parcells to become the Jets head coach and the Patriots were awarded four draft picks.

New York Jets

In his first year with the Jets, he led them to a 9-7 record, more than doubling the four wins that the Jets had in the two previous years before Parcells took over.

In his second year, he led them to a 12-4 record before losing the AFC Championship game.

Dallas Cowboys

After three consecutive 5-11 seasons, Dallas Cowboys' Owner Jerry Jones called on  Parcells to right the ship in 2004.

In his first season as the Cowboys' head coach, Parcells led them to a playoff appearance and a 10-6 record.

Parcells' Cowboys made two playoff appearances but his overall record with the Cowboys was only 34-32. It should be noted that he did set the foundation for the 13-3 team that the Cowboys fielded in 2007.

Miami Dolphins

Parcells took over as Executive Vice President of Football Operations for a Dolphins team who was 1-15 in 2007.

In classic Parcells style, he completely revamped the Dolphins team from the ground up. He brought many of his kind of players, and staff from the Cowboys.

He even let go of 2006 Defensive MVP Jason Taylor.

The result?

In 2008, the Miami Dolphins won the AFC East with an 11-5 record. 

It is said by many as to be the greatest turn-around in NFL history.

There is no one with the above resume in the history of the NFL.

If the Dolphins don't make the right moves to keep him, there will be many teams jumping through hoops to get a piece of this great football mind.

And that team will be better in 2009.