Before the season started I ranked all 32 NFL coaches and their “hot seat” ranking. We’re at the midpoint of the regular season and lots of things have changed from August, namely Brad Childress conjuring up new and creative ways to get himself closer to the unemployment line. After the jump is a new list on a 1 to 5 scale, with 5 being the hottest and 1 as the coolest. Each coach will have a +/- change from their August rankings so for example if someone was on the “2 of 5” scale and increased to “4 of 5” it will show a +2 marking. There is a “0” for no ranking and a -2 change noting that a coach is not really in much trouble as I’d thought.
No Heat (1 of 5)
Sean Payton (New Orleans Saints, 0) – The Saints look really iffy and I’m not sure they’ll be in the playoffs. That said you don’t just fire a coach after he won the Super Bowl so he is guaranteed a stay.
Jeff Fisher (Tennessee Titans, 0) – I guess Tennessee only performs well every other year.
Mike Smith (Atlanta Falcons, 0) – The Atlanta Falcons are my favorite non-Seahawks team to watch every week.
Bill Belichick (New England Patriots, -1) – Well…I didn’t see the Pats being this good.
Mike Tomlin (Pittsburgh Steelers, -1) – Early Coach of the Year candidate for me. To go 3-1 without your best QB as well as watching your backups drop like flies is very encouraging.
John Harbaugh (Baltimore Ravens, 0) – This is the first time the Ravens have consistently been in the playoff hunt…pretty much in their history.
Cool Chair (2 of 5)
Jim Schwartz (Detroit Lions, 0) – I guarantee you the Detroit Lions will make the playoffs by 2014.
Todd Haley (Kansas City Chiefs, -1) – I saw the improvement towards the end of last season and they’ve performed beyond everyone’s expectations this year. Kudos to Haley for turning this team into the AFC West favorite.
Ken Whisenhunt (Arizona Cardinals, 0) – It is his fault the Arizona Cardinals do not have an NFL caliber QB and there clearly was not a Plan B for the post-Warner era. This will get upgraded to a 3 if Arizona just has the wheels fall off.
Jim Caldwell (Indianapolis Colts, +1) – Ponder this: If Peyton Manning was not the starting QB, would the Indianapolis Colts would be a 4-12 caliber team? I’m still skeptical of his game management skills (especially after that Jaguars loss) but he will have to fail a lot to get canned.
Raheem Morris (Tampa Bay Buccaneers, -2) – Looks like the Bucs were wise not to hastily fire him.
Pete Carroll (Seattle Seahawks, 0) – I will not stand for another Jim Mora collapse but thankfully Pete isn’t that crazy angry, only crazy happy.
Steve Spagnuolo (St. Louis Rams, -2) – I hate typing this up. Seattle is respectable for the first time in two seasons and NOW the Rams are good? Ugh.
Tony Sparano (Miami Dolphins, 0) – When are they going to win a home game?
Rex Ryan (New York Jets, 0) – He’s hideous to look at on the sidelines and for the most part the Jets are an ugly team to watch. It cannot be denied they’re one of the best in the NFL right now and barring some horrendous meltdown he is going to be head coach for a long time in the Meadowlands.
Tom Coughlin (New York Giants, -3) – The only one from my “Towering Inferno” list to downgrade this much. You know, the Giants started off strongly last year before a disastrous last few weeks to the season. A repeat can put him back to his previous position but the Giants D won’t let that happen, will they?
Lukewarm (3 of 5)
Eric Mangini (Cleveland Browns, -1) – Cleveland is playing competitive football and Colt McCoy has performed respectably. The seat is still warm but it’s certainly cooling and will continue to cool if they play decent football the rest of the way.
Tom Cable (Oakland Raiders, -1) – I wanted to put him in the “Cool Chair” but I can never trust any coach to not be on the hot seat for as long as Al Davis is still breathing.
Mike McCarthy (Green Bay Packers, +1) – Green Bay is decimated by injuries but I do not believe that is why they’ve lost three games already. This is a very undisciplined team committing untimely penalties in close games and when the team is not disciplined it is an issue of coaching. Get your crap together or else my NFC Super Bowl pick is going to go down the toilet!
Andy Reid (Philadelphia Eagles, 0) – Vick starts one week, Kolb the next, then Vick again, then Kolb….why trade Donovan McNabb if you’re making “win now” decisions every week? I guess the Eagles will be in contention to win a weak NFC East but they lose in disturbingly bad manners. The defense is pathetic at times and I don’t think Sean McDermott is the right man for the job as Eagles defensive coordinator. Reid is permanently stuck in lukewarm mode because only a Super Bowl win will get him towards permanent job security…but he never does poorly enough to warrant a certain pink slip.
Burning (4 of 5)
Norv Turner (San Diego Chargers, 0) – I can’t discount the annual late season San Diego surge, but even this year it does not feel like Norv can be bailed out of a piss poor start for the umpteenth time.
Josh McDaniels (Denver Broncos, +1) – Since their fluke 6-0 start the Broncos are 4-14 with that nice little 59-14 loss to the Raiders in their pocket. He can turn the ship around to some form of respectability or he can crash and burn and go back to being an offensive coordinator.
Chan Gailey (Buffalo Bills, +1) – Maybe 3 wins will put him in the “safe” zone but other than that he’s pretty much doomed.
Mike Shanahan (Washington Redskins, +1) – Donovan McNabb can’t run a two-minute drill because he lacks the endurance, so let’s bring in JaMarcus Russell for a tryout! This is a Dan Snyder run team and he’s not afraid to blow things up. A season collapse would just about KO his run.
Jack Del Rio (Jacksonville Jaguars, -1) – They’re 4-4 and within an earshot of 1st in the competitive AFC South. If they can muster 8-8 I think Del Rio stays but anything less and he might be packing his bags.
Gary Kubiak (Houston Texans, 0) – Houston’s defense is atrocious and it has to be corrected or else the Texans will miss out on the playoffs again and there is pretty much no good reason to keep Kubiak with the talent they have on both sides of the ball.
Towering Inferno (5 of 5)
Wade Phillips (Dallas Cowboys, 0) – Self explanatory. I bet you he “resigns” at some point during the remainder of the season.
Brad Childress (Minnesota Vikings, +1) – I’m not even sure a playoff appearance can save him because he has destroyed the Vikings so badly.
Marv Lewis (Cincinnati Bengals, +1) – I told you the Bengals would suck. Marv’s time is up.
John Fox (Carolina Panthers, 0) – He’s playing musical chairs with his quarterbacks and right now I think they’re worse than the Buffalo Bills. It’s his swan song and it sure feels like he won’t be back with the Panthers next season.
Mike Singletary (San Francisco 49ers, +2) – I actually believe the Niners can get 5-6 wins but it’s too late for that. Another season of no playoffs after being the overwhelming favorite will get him fired for sure.
Lovie Smith (Chicago Bears, 0) – Unless he can suit up and protect Jay Cutler he’s as good as gone when Chicago collapses. And yes I said “when” and not “if” because they will just take a gigantic nosedive.