Last week we took a look at the NFC head coaches and where they stand relative to job security. This time around it’s the AFC.
BALTIMORE It is hard to imagine that anyone is more secure right now than JOHN HARBAUGH. He possesses his brother’s passion, but is less explosive and combatant. He is also a good soldier to highly acclaimed GM OZZIE NEWSOME. All is good here.
BUFFALO New BILLS ownership may be facing some organizational decisions sooner than he might like. DOUG MARRONE is clearly the strongest, most forthright coach the BILLS have had in a long time. His mentality as an ex-O lineman fits the blue collar image of upstate New York. But word has leaked out of some infighting between MARRONE and some longtime BILLS yes men to Ralph Wilson. In my opinion, given the play-off drought in Buffalo some long timers need to go before MARRONE does.
CINCINNATI You can’t argue with the stability and overall winning ways MARVIN LEWIS has brought to a once floundering organization over the past decade. But sometime soon he really needs to crank it up and win a game or two in the post-season. He’s safe for now, but something has to change.
CLEVELAND MIKE PETTINE looks like a solid match for the BROWNS fan mentality, as represented in the Dog Pound. A little more stability above him in this organization would be helpful, but he has to be safe right now.
DENVER JOHN FOX is a solid NFL coach and as long as he has PEYTON running the Offense all is good. But long term, things could get interesting for FOX when PEYTON finally leaves town.
HOUSTON Just as expected BILL O’BRIEN looks and talks the part of a fiery leader with lots of football savvy. He comes across as a natural and i think the pressure has shifted in Houston onto the shoulders of GM SMITH if things don’t improve soon. By the way, what are the chances owner BOB McNAIR is whispering to SMITH & O’BRIEN how good RG3 might look in a Houston uniform?
INDIANAPOLIS CHUCK PAGANO is a smart leader of men, and has the locker room in Indy. But RYAN GRIGSON/GM has to do a better job of bringing in more solid talent. Lots of bandaids are being applied around the roster. Many assume GRIGSON gets too much help from Jim Irsay, who loves big name guys like TRENT RICHARDSON too much. Things are stable in Indy, and LUCK covers up a lot of flaws with his play.
JACKSONVILLE Most of the upper management team is new and that’s a good thing in Jax. GUS BRADLEY is a clone of Pete Carroll with positive vibes and high energy. Progress appears to be under way. The next two drafts are critical, and BRADLEY should be around to work with those players.
KANSAS CITY ANDY REID is doing more with less than any coach in the NFL right now. Even if they are taking a step backwards this season the team of DORSEY/REID is secure.
MIAMI This is a tough one to call. Most say JOE PHILBIN is a different guy after the INCOGNITO/MARTIN debacle that embarrassed not just Owner Ross, but the Shield as well. Many think that the coaching seat is hotter than you might expect. domain name search . If the team continues to lose down the stretch, like last year Philbin could be gone.
MEW ENGLAND The KRAFT/BELICHICK partnership has been incredibly fruitful. I;d still like to see another strong personnel voice re-introduced into the picture, but BELICHICK will remain as Emperor For Life at least til BRADY retires.
NEW YORK JETS A meddling owner, and sudden talk that no one in the organization like GM IDZIK after just two years has raised a smoke screen, but clearly REX RYAN is a Dead Coach Walking. Rex will make a great DC for some NFL team in 2015 or 2016.
OAKLAND It’s hard to imagine TONY SPARANO getting the interim title upgraded… just because. But if GM Reggie McKenzie can’t get himself a top name guy he might just sit tight with Tony until he gets more talent on board. It’s not like candidates are knocking his doors down to get the Raiders job anymore.
PITTSBURGH I think Mike Tomlin believes strawberry ice cream is an exotic flavor, and coaches that way as well. But in a franchise that prides itself on stability Tomlin has absolute job security for the foreseeable future.
SAN DIEGO MIKE McCOY is a boy wonder Head Coach who looks like a long time hire. The Spanos family has bigger issues to deal with in their stadium battles with the City/County of San Diego. The young team of TELESCO/McCOY is golden right now.
TENNESSEE I’m still not sold here but the organization certainly owes KEN WHISENHUNT another year or two on the job while they try to upgrade his marginal roster talent. A big concern in Nashville is whether QB Whisperer Whisenhunt has a true NFL caliber QB to whisper sweet nothings to right now. But that’s not Ken’s fault.