APPLETON, WI JANUARY 14, 2022
Well the 2021-22 regular season has concluded. We now are aware of eight head coach openings across the NFL. Below are the openings and Jacob and Sam both put their predictions of who will fill these jobs.
Matt Nagy was relieved of his duties along with GM, Ryan Pace. A complete overhaul seems to be the theme at Halas Hall as team president, Ted Phillips is no longer to oversee the football operations and instead will focus on making sure the team can successfully move into Arlington Heights over the coming seasons.
Jacob: There is a move for me that makes sense… Knowing the Bears are constantly criticized for having only the same type of individual at the top of this organization. That type is an old white man that has to listen to a 99 year old woman, Virginia McCaskey. Knowing this is an issue, I anticipate the Bears to make a strong effort in hiring former Dolphins coach and Patriots position coach, Brian Flores to shake things up and bring a more respected (not racist) looking organization back from the dead. There is also the slim chance of the Bears ending up with Sean Payton and while I hope this is the result, I believe they will go with the second best possible option. (If Payton does come to the Bears, I would have Flores arriving in New Orleans)
Jacob’s Prediction: Brian Flores
Sam: The Bears need to get a head coach in place that can maximize the talents of Justin Fields who they spent a lot of draft capital to get. I have a feeling that the Bears will look towards another offensive guru or at least another assistant off of ones staff. They see how Matt Lafluer has done within their division and want to create the same magic within their franchise. It also is a massive plus that they would be taking one of the top assistants off of their biggest rival.
Sam’s Prediction: Nathaniel Hackett
Following Saturday’s loss to the Chiefs, Vic Fangio was let go by the Denver Broncos as they attempt to find a head coach that can bring them back to the playoffs. The last time the Broncos made the playoffs was Peyton Manning’s last season when they won the Super Bowl.
Jacob: The Bucaneers coordinators are going to be a hot commodity these next few weeks. I see one of the two between Leftwich and Bowles getting out to Denver. With the recent struggles of the offense, I think Leftwich is going to be a great coach to give this opportunity to in hopes of improving an inefficient offense.
Jacob’s Prediction: Byron Leftwich
Sam: The last couple of head coaches that the Broncos have hired have been around the game for a while, in Fox, Kubiak, and Fangio. Two of the three had the Broncos be their second job after having a long tenure at their first job. I think that the Broncos go that route again and give a guy a second chance who I am shocked hasn’t been given a second shot at being a head coach already in Leslie Frasier. I think he could be the leader this roster needs at the head coaching position, and having all the studs on defense that the Broncos have on it probably won’t hurt convincing Frasier to take the job.
Sam’s Prediction: Leslie Frasier
Many would likely say that the surprise firing of the year would be Dolphins head coach, Brian Flores. After starting the season 1-7, Flores and the Dolphins showed major improvements and finished 9-8. There were reports that Flores and QB Tua Tagovailoa could not get on the same page and the organization was not happy with production levels despite the quarterback being 13-8 over his two seasons in the NFL.
Jacob: Don’t rule the Dolphins out of the DeShaun Watson sweepstakes and for them to get him, they will need a coach that will be able to work with Watson. No one is better than Brian Daboll after seeing the progress he has made with Josh Allen. Daboll is a hot name in the coaching market and will have a head coaching job this offseason and I believe for him the best fit is with the division rival, Miami Dolphins.
Jacob’s Prediction: Brian Daboll
Sam: I think one of the reasons that Brian Flores was let go as head coach is because he is not seen as a great offensive mind, and the front office believes that Tua is their future at QB. So the Dolphins go with a guy that they have been able to see in the division who has done tremendous work with anther young QB in Josh Allen. I believe Brian Daboll will end up being the next Head Coach in Miami as well.
Sam’s Prediction: Brian Daboll
New York Giants
It took longer, but on Tuesday afternoon it was announced Joe Judge had been let go by the New York Giants. He is the seventh coach of to be let go and the Giants get a late start in the requests to interview top candidates.
Jacob: This comes to no surprise after Dave Gettleman announced his retirement. I believe them starting this process will effect the team but I believe they will improve under whoever the new head coach and GM are… Can it really get any worse? Judge’s staff was incapable of getting the offense going and is leaving what I assume to be a low desired job. I can see them giving a coach like Bill O’Brien a chance to return to the NFL after his sucess as the Alabama Crimson Tide offensive coordinator and posting a record of 54-52 with the Houston Texans during the later part of the previous decade.
Jacob’s Prediction: Bill O’Brien
Sam: In a theme of mine in who’s going to be getting head coaching jobs, I’m picking another guy to get a second opportunity at being a Head Coach in the NFL. The team may decide to hire a General Manger first before hiring a Coach. Which they may not have much time to do so if my prediction is to come true. I believe Todd Bowles comes back to New York (Technically New Jersey) but coaches the other team at MetLife Stadium. I think Bowles would be intrigued with the players that the Giants have on defense in their front 7, as well as Bradbury and their Safteys. If the team brings in a veteran QB to try and right the ship for a year or two I think Bowles can succeed with his second time around in New York.
Sam’s Prediction: Todd Bowles
What was shockingly not the first in-season firing, Urban Meyer was a complete disaster in Jacksonville…. I don’t think anything else needs to be said.
Jacob: Jacksonville, while having another bad year, is a very attractive job. They will have another first pick overall and have a quarterback that was highly regarded and may have been the biggest draft prospect since Andrew Luck. While I personally believe that Bieniemy gets an advantage and his potential is inflated by being under Andy Reid, we have seen what he has done with Mahomes and I believe the Jaguars organization is going to have a tough time going past the 52 year old coordinator.
Jacob’s Prediction: Eric Bieniemy
Sam: After obviously making the wrong decision in hiring Urban Meyer last offseason I think that the Jags go in the complete opposite direction with their next head coach. I think they go with someone who can grow as a coach a long with Lawrence and this young team. I think they go with a top Offensive Coordinator in the game in the Cowboys Kellen Moore. If the Cowboys allow for Moore to interview for jobs I feel like he will on the top of most teams lists.
Sam’s Prediction: Kellen Moore
The Raiders lost their head coach to a scandal early in this season when Jon Gruden was called a racist for some emails he had sent about an NFL official in the early 2010’s while at ESPN. The Raiders did make the playoffs under interim head coach, Rich Bisaccia and leader, Derek Carr.
Jacob: Why fix what isn’t broken. The Raiders rallied behind Bisaccia and Derek Carr. Unless this team is getting Aaron Rodgers and they want to bring Nathaniel Hackett along for the ride, I see the Raiders just dropping interim from his job title.
Jacob’s Prediction: Rich Bisaccia
Sam: I agree with Jacob in the fact why fix what isn’t broken. Bisaccia and Derrick Carr somehow got this team to the playoffs after all that happened to them this year, and that can only happen if the team believes in their coach.
Sam’s Prediction: Rich Bisaccia
As a complete shock and honestly in a massively disrespectful move, the Texans fired David Culley on Thursday. He wasn’t given much of a roster with superstar QB, Deshaun Watson, sitting out the season due to legal troubles and not wanting to play for the organization.
Jacob: With the Patriots routes coming from the top of the organization and knowing that superstar QB, Deshaun Watson, wanted to play for an African-American head coach, Jarad Mayo makes a ton of sense and checks all the boxes. A Patriots product, knows the direction that the organization will be going and will be an easy relationship to navigate with GM, Nick Caserio. This was a leading factor that came in to Culley’s job decision according to sources around the league.
Jacob’s Prediction: Jarad Mayo
Sam: After coming out and saying that Culley got the team out a tough spot and helped them build toward the future. Nick Caserio might know someone who was recently let go as a head coach that he has some experience working in his time in New England. My prediction for who is going to be the next head coach of the Houston Texans is going to be a former New England Patriots Defensive Coordinator in Brian Flores. I feel like Flores was also let go prematurely as well, just like Culley. But ends up replacing another prematurely fired head coach.
Sam’s Prediction: Brian Flores
After eight seasons as the head coach of the Vikings, the team announced they would be parting ways with Mike Zimmer. The team also relieved the Gm of 16 seasons, Rick Spielman. Reports throughout the season is Zimmer and star wideout, Justin Jefferson, did not get along and this may be a concern as the team could have been held back. The defense also got progressively worse over the previous 5 seasons as the team was 31st in the league this season in Defensive PPG and Total Offense.
Jacob: The team needs help getting the defense back and I expect this search to be defensively oriented. The number one option believed by many is Todd Bowles. The former head coach of the Jets and defensive coordinator for the Buccaneers has a good coaching resume and was responsible for the last Jets winning season. Todd Bowles is going to be a hot name during this search and I expect him to be a head coach somewhere as he is also a diversity hire, something the NFL has been very passionate about improving.
Jacob’s Prediction: Todd Bowles
Sam: I think that the Minnesota Vikings go in the opposite direction from their last two head coaching hires, in hiring defensive minded head coaches and go with an offensive guy. I also think that they will go after a coordinator on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers staff but on the Offensive side of the ball. Leftwich has led one of the top offenses in football over the last two years. Plus I think it will be a plus for Leftwich in coming into a job with all the weapons that the Minnesota offense will have for next season.
Sam’s Prediction: Byron Leftwich