NFL Rumors: Latest on Steve Wilks, Ron Rivera, More Coaches on Hot Seat

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistDecember 23, 2018

CHARLOTTE, NC - DECEMBER 17: Head coach Ron Rivera of the Carolina Panthers looks on against the New Orleans Saints in the fourth quarter during their game at Bank of America Stadium on December 17, 2018 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
Grant Halverson/Getty Images

With the NFL season winding down to a close, a number of head coaches find themselves on the hot seat. So who's safe and who is on the way out?

According to Ian Rapoport of NFL.com, both Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Doug Marrone and Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera are expected to be back next season despite disappointing 2018 campaigns.

Per Marone, Rapoport wrote that "owner Shad Khan is not panicking, sources say, nor is he looking for a scapegoat. Less than a year after locking in his entire upper-level power structure to contract extensions, he wants to see it through. They were, after all, a tipped pass away from the Super Bowl."

He added that "Khan and Tom Coughlin, executive VP of football operations, believe in Marrone going forward."

The Jaguars are just 4-10, a shocking turnaround for a team that reached the AFC Championship a year ago. But Marrone reportedly will be given at least one more season to right the ship. 

As for Rivera, Rapoport noted that "new owner David Tepper is expected to be patient" and that "ownership believes in the men in charge."

He added that "The other issue for the Panthers would be a similar one that the Ravens faced with coach John Harbaugh. If Rivera was available, he'd be either the top or in the top two of available head-coach candidates. All the more reasons for Carolina to hang on to its guy."

Rivera has gone 70-55-1 in eight seasons as Carolina's head coach, leading the team to four postseason berths, including a trip to the Super Bowl. It would have been surprising had he been fired. 

Staying in the NFC South, Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter is on the hottest of hot seats, though he may keep his job despite another disappointing season. Additionally, Dan Quinn is expected back in Atlanta:

Finally, a 3-11 start for the Arizona Cardinals has led many to assume that head coach Steve Wilks would be one and done in the organization. But wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald is hoping Wilks gets a second chance.

"We all would want him back," he told Rapoport.

"I love Wilks," he added. "Great dude. We all play hard for him. That's the team—not me alone—speaking on it."

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