Every NFL head coach essentially takes the same path to their job. They work their way through the assistant coaching ranks, starting at the bottom of the totem poll, bouncing from place to place in order to move up the ladder, and finally landing a job as a coordinator. In that spot, they flourish, becoming an integral part of a team’s success.
Because of that, a coach becomes a hot commodity; every downtrodden franchise wants to tap into the magic they’ve demonstrated on either the offensive or defensive side of the ball, a formula that has proven successful elsewhere. So, they get tabbed as a head coach, the only remaining level of advancement.
However, some guys simply aren’t ready for that step. As a coordinator, they thrive because the job is about X’s and O’s; that’s where their talent lies. But as a head coach, they struggle because it’s much more about managing every detail of the team than drawing up plays on a chalkboard; that’s not their strong suit.
Norv Turner has been the best recent example of this phenomenon. Wade Phillips is also on the list. Both are great football minds who have had monster success as offensive and defensive coordinators, respectively. But both have struggled as head coaches, lacking some trait that would allow them to flourish as the top guy.
But they aren’t the only ones who fall into this category. Today, there are plenty of head coaches who are no different than Turner and Phillips; they’ve be much better off as a coordinator than the top guy.
So with that in mind, to see 10 current NFL coaches who would be better suited to be a top assistant, click here.