Taking the reins of an NFL team is not made for everyone. The history of the NFL is littered with head coaches who have tried but failed to lead their teams to a championship. Some coaches display signs of serious inadequacies quickly (Bobby Petrino), while others start well but eventually have their flaws exposed (Buddy Ryan). As it does every season, the coaching carousel is in full swing and has already thrown a couple of coaches off the ride.
Cleveland and Green Bay have jettisoned their head coaches respectively in Hue Jackson and Mike McCarthy. However, there seems to be a few more coaches who are losing their grip on the handles and may soon add to the group looking for another shot. Today we take a look at which coaches are on the hot seat, and who are in sever danger of an early end on the ride.
Seat is Getting Loose
Marrone fired offensive coordinator Nathaniel Hackett. This is normally the first sign of coaches believing their time is near an end. Hackett’s offense showed signs at times but routinely fell flat late in games. After the firing, Marrone made a change at quarterback, benching Blake Bortles for journeyman Cody Kessler. The Jaguars are not officially out of the playoff hunt but would need a monumental collapse from the rest of the contenders. Jacksonville pulled out a victory at home against the Colts which helps Marrone as much as a piece of gum can fix a cracked damn. If the Jaguars can finish the season strong it will make it easier for management to keep their head coach. At the very least the move could be to force Marrone’s hand and bring in an up and coming offensive mind.
The Falcons continue their free fall from one time contender to mediocrity. Quinn has taken much of the blame this season as both sides of the ball has suffered through long stretches of frustrating results. Atlanta’s offense continues to have issues finishing drives and the problems with the offensive line has only gotten worse. Matt Ryan was once viewed as a top-tier quarterback but has looked barely above average for most of 2018. Quinn may get another season to turn things around since his team is coming off of back to back seasons in the playoffs and a Super Bowl appearance in 2016. Of course, things haven’t been the same since the Falcons had a 28-3 lead in the third quarter over New England.
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Wilks is the only coach on either list in his first year with his team. He is also the only rookie coach on the list. Typically a new head coach, especially one in his first stint, gets more than a season to show his worth. However, the Cardinals are coming off an injury riddled 2017 where they finished with an 8-8 record.
It was a solid coaching job from Bruce Arians as the team was able to find ways to win even without two of their three top offensive players in running back David Johnson and quarterback Carson Palmer for most of the year. Replacing a coach beloved by fans and local media is tough. It is even tougher when the Cardinals are 3-9 thus far and have lost by the score of 45-10 against both the Chargers and Broncos this season. The Broncos loss was a Thursday night home game.
Less Room than Jack on the Door
Bowles came to New York as a hot commodity. He had experienced serious success as the defensive coordinator for the Arizona Cardinals with his attacking style. Since arriving in the Big Apple, Bowles has disappointed many Jets fans as well as the local media. The primary issue for Bowles has been the lack of a consistent offense. New York has struggled to find their voice on offense and suffered through lackluster quarterback play for most of Bowles’ time with the Jets.
The last time Koetter held a head coaching job prior to his current stint in Tampa Bay, was with the Arizona State University Sun Devils. Koetter underwhelmed in Tempe and was soon fired after consistently failing to be relevant in the PAC-12. He then found his way to the NFL and soon wound up as the offensive coordinator for the Buccaneers. Lovie Smith’s shortcomings led to Koetter being hired. Since taking over, Koetter has shown the same knack for coaching mediocrity as he did with ASU.
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The talent is on the roster in Tampa Bay, especially on offense. The Buccaneers are staring at another failed season without a playoff berth and the possibility of needing to find a new quarterback. It’d be wise to look at the Sun Devils and the immediate success they had after telling Koetter to kick rocks. ASU had a 10 win season with a roster primarily composed of Koetter’s recruits.