The “Coacheys” are back everyone. Now given the NFL’s propensity to fire multiple coaches before the season’s end, I’ve decided to host these a little earlier this year. We are about five weeks away from “Black Monday” and there are some notable names expected not to return.
So, without further adieu, I give you the 2012 “Can I see you in my office?” Awards:
Andy Reid - Eagles owner Jeff Lurie told media at the end of last season that 8-8 would not be good enough this year. If the Eagles are lucky, they’ll win 5 games total this year. They are a mess and it just seems that it’s time for a change in Philadelphia. Reid has been arguably the greatest coach in Eagles history, but in his tenure even the Phillies have resurged, won a title, and fallen again. There will be a mutiny among the fans if “Big Red” is there next season. Although, I have a feeling his coaching career could be going “to the dogs” (hint hint).
Pat Shurmur - Browns new owner Jimmy Haslem is looking to clear out the old regime and establish his own. Joe Banner has been put in change and will look to right this depressing ship. The Browns have shown some improvement on defense, but Shurmur will be the victim of a regime change. At the end of the day, look for a reunion between Joe Banner (longtime Eagles president), Brad Childress (current Browns offensive coordinator), and the soon-to-be-fired Andy Reid.
Norv Turner – The Chargers just choose to under achieve, it’s just what they do. They only play in November and December and the level of talent isn’t what it used to be. I’m not even sure Norv should be fired, but this team has been at a stalemate for years.
Ron Rivera - Two uninspiring seasons + nine total wins + an impatient owner = The Want-ads. Team owner Jerry Richardson knows what he has in Cam Newton and desperately wants to capitalize on it immediately. The Panthers need better talent on the roster, which is why GM Marty Hurney was shown the door. Rivera could be a potential candidate to rejoin Andy Reid in Cleveland (formerly served as Eagles Linebackers coach).
Jason Garrett - Jerry Jones’ handpicked choice is imploding. The Cowboys are the perennial underachievers. Now Jerry will only make this move if he feels he can score a top flight guy. There’s been rumors of Mike Holmgren returning to the sidelines. However, I could see someone from Jerry’s past coming to save the day, which leads to…
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Sean Payton - It was announced in early November that Sean Payton’s contract extension had been voided by the NFL due to language in the contract. Given all of the stink from “Bountygate”, both Payton and the Saints may be looking for a fresh start and this could be it. Interim coach Joe Vitt has proven himself to be capable of leading the Saints and could certainly be a candidate to take over permanently. Payton was the QB coach under Bill Parcells in Dallas and is said to be on Jones’ radar. Jones could see bringing in Payton as a way to compete with his friendly rival, Redskins owner Dan Snyder who has Mike Shanahan…for now (see below). Although, look for the Eagles to be a sleeper candidate should Payton leave the Saints given their history (former QB coach).
Romeo Crennel - You will not make many friends with a 1-10 record. Given Crennel’s track record as a head coach (27-51), he doesn’t have much good credit built up. He’ll probably get a mulligan this season, but the clock will start come next year.
Rex Ryan – Two AFC title game appearances in the first two seasons has bought Ryan some creditability. However, the Jets have regressed and are just plain awful. Facing another disappointing season and team owner Woody Johnson’s want to be New York’s premier team, Ryan could be facing the exit in 2013.
Ken Wisenhunt - Since Kurt Warner retired, the Cardinals have lacked any kind of stability at quarterback. They’ve lost 7 straight games after a 4-0 start. The Cardinals defense has played well but the team has been fairly stagnant recently. Wisenhunt needs to get this team competitive and fast. The Niners, Seahawks and now the Rams are starting to establish themselves as the top teams in the NFC West.
RENT, DON’T BUY
Mike Mularkey - The play of QB Chad Henne may have bought Mularkey some time. Gabbert has been awful and the Jaguars are just terrible. Mularkey will definitely be here in 2013 but beyond that is a question mark. Then again, how long did Del Rio last?
Leslie Frazier – The Vikings are 6-5 and 5-1 at home. However, QB Christian Ponder’s spotty play and the 1-4 road record is a cause for concern. The NFC North is one of the toughest divisions in football and the Vikings brass may decide that Ponder’s development would better benefit from an offensive-minded head coach.
Mike Shanahan - Mike Shanahan is arguably the most overrated coach in football. After Elway’s retirement, Shanahan has made four playoff appearances in 14 seasons, including three wild-card round losses. He has posted only six winning seasons. RG3 has played great, but so did Cam Newton last year and the Panthers are terrible this season. Shanahan will need to show that he can put a team behind RG3 in the next two seasons or Dan Snyder may look to make a change.