The hours are long, the stress level is off the chart and job security does not exist.
This is the life of an NFL coach and in 2011 there are five potential changes that could come during or after the season. It’s either win or go home.
Norv Turner, San Diego Chargers
Norv is entering his fifth season as the Chargers head man. Under his leadership San Diego has underachieved posting a .641 winning percentage with a record of 41-23. The Chargers have become known for their slow starts under Turner, and last season it finally caught up with the team as they missed the playoffs finishing the regular season with a 9-7 record. Keep in mind that was with the number one rated offense and defense in 2010. During the off-season the Chargers brought in big name free agents Bob Sanders and Takeo Spikes to bolster an already solid defense. Offensively they have one of league’s best quarterbacks in Phillip Rivers, big time receivers in Vincent Jackson, Malcolm Floyd and TE Antonio Gates and a cast of talented supporters capable of stepping in and making big plays. With that type of firepower on both sides of the ball, expectations are high again for the Chargers in 2011. Because of those expectations, if the Chargers don’t go deep into the playoffs in 2011, look for Norv to be out of a job come 2012.
Andy Reid , Philadelphia Eagles
In a poker like move, the Eagles front office stacked their chips and went all in for the 2011 season signing free agents Nnamdi Asomugha, Ronnie Brown, Vince Young, and Steve Smith. With a shopping spree that rivaled Paris Hilton on Rodeo Drive, the Eagles have one expectation in 2011, Super Bowl or bust! Possessing freakish talent on offense with weapons like Michael Vick , Desean Jackson, and Lesean McCoy, and a solid defense with the addition of the prize of the free agent class, Asomugha, the Eagles appear primed to make a championship run. The problem with going all in, as the Eagles have, is that they now have more no excuses for not winning it all. And when they don’t hoist the Lombardi in 2011, fingers will point in the direction of head coach Andy Reid as he will be the one constant through many shortcomings. Unfortunately for Reid, winning a Super Bowl is easier said than done leaving his only contemplation going into 2012 as whether to sign with FOX or ESPN?
Hue Jackson, Oakland Raiders
Wait he’s a first year coach? Yep, for the Raiders. This team changes coaches like Lady Gaga changes outfits. With no rhyme or reason, it’s just done. Advice for Hugh, “Just win baby” or you lack of commitment to excellence might find you unemployed in 2012.
These coaches don’t stand a chance to enter the 2012 season.
Gary Kubiak, Houston Texans
When will the Texans make the playoffs? Not in 2011. Bye-Bye Gary!
Tony Sparano, Miami Dolphins
Wasn’t he already replaced last season by current 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh? Oh wait, that never happened. Tony Sparano is the first NFL head coach to be fired before he was fired. His return as the Dolphins head man in 2011 is a sympathy card sent from the Dolphins front office. “Dear Tony, we’re sorry for trying to hire Jim Harbaugh before we fired you. Please accept our head coaching position for the 2011 season as an apology. We will not be improving our roster to ensure that we can legitimately fire you before 2012 and draft Andrew Luck. Sincerely, Dolphins Management.” For Sparano, the only question as to his firing is when?