The 2017-2018 NFL season is officially in the books, and after the Philadelphia Eagles beat the New England Patriots, most are putting together their rankings for the long, and at times arduous, NFL offseason.
A recent top 10 list of the best offensive lines in the NFL drew the ire of Steelers fans everywhere, so I figured I would take a stab at some of my own rankings, starting with head coaches.
Sean McVay of the Los Angeles Rams isn’t just the youngest head coach in the league, the man took home the Coach of the Year award. You might assume he would top the list, but I typically make my rankings by the eye test. I look at the team’s accomplishments, how they may have elevated the team this past season, and possibly how they have struggled in certain areas.
On to the list...
1. Doug Pederson
When you win the Super Bowl with a backup quarterback, and beat arguably the best coach/quarterback combination to do so...you earn the top spot on the list.
2. Bill Belichick
Say what you want about the scandals and his grumpy demeanor, Belichick is one of the best ever. People forget how many injuries the Patriots suffered this season, and he still got back to the Super Bowl.
3. Sean McVay
Coach of the Year, and for a reason. McVay was a huge reason for Jared Goff’s resurgence, and the Rams have the look of a team to be reckoned with in the years to come.
4. Doug Marrone
Doug Pederson gets a ton of credit for winning it all with Nick Foles, but Marrone got to the AFC Championship game with Blake Bortles. Think about that for a second. The defense, and running game, are among the league’s best.
5. Sean Payton
Payton’s work with the Saints’ rookie class is noteworthy. He was a Minnesota miracle away from the NFC Championship game. Some were doubting his abilities just a year ago, but Payton’s work this season should have silenced the critics.
6. Mike Tomlin
Tomlin has dropped on these rankings for some obvious reasons, none greater than the team’s flop against the Jaguars in the Divisional Round game at Heinz Field. Yes, the team was 13-3, but Tomlin has some work to do to get back into the Top 5, where he once took up residence.
7. Mike Zimmer
Another coach who did a lot with a backup quarterback. No Teddy Bridgewater or Sam Bradford, Zimmer road Case Keenum to the NFC Championship game. However, I can’t help but feel the Vikings’ season was a bit of smoke-and-mirrors. Let’s see if Zimmer can do it two years in a row.
8. Dan Quinn
The Falcons were a few runs away from winning Super Bowl 51, and the Super Bowl hangover didn’t stop Atlanta from making it back to the postseason. Quinn has a great roster in Atlanta, and he is a coach who deserves to be in the top 10.
9. Andy Reid
Postseason flops aside, Reid is still a coach who should be on this list. Why isn’t Reid higher? Because of the aforementioned postseason flops.
10. Mike McCarthy
It almost seems as if McCarthy and Ron Rivera could be default coaches at No. 10. Both have good quarterbacks, and when healthy are always in the discussion for postseason play. In fact, there are several coaches who could be at No. 10. I just chose McCarthy because he has the best quarterback.