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The NFL stinks at hiring (1 Viewer)

ignatiusjreilly

Footballguy
Exhibit A: The NFL Keeps Failing Hiring 101

Exhibit B: Just How Big A Problem Is Nepotism In NFL Coaching?

I don't want to turn this into a discussion of the Rooney Rule, partly because I think it's a highly flawed mechanism and partly because I always find those types of discussions end up being unproductive. But one thing I've noticed is that often people who oppose the RR seem to have an underlying assumption that it's a violation of some kind of natural, meritocratic order. And articles like the ones above highlight how mistaken that assumption is. 

IMO, the problem ultimately boils down to this: the final decision maker will always be the owner, and owners are pretty much all a bunch of (temperamentally) conservative old dudes who made their money in the Old Economy. And the decisions they make reflect exactly the biases you would expect to see from a group like that: an overreliance on safe, traditional choices, an overemphasis on existing relationships (hence all the nepotism), and zero belief in the idea that diverse hiring practices are a smart business strategy (and for the record, when I say "diverse" I'm referring to far more than just race).

In fact, one reason I've moved away from my initial lukewarm support of the Rooney Rule is because I've concluded it doesn't really address the underlying issue. If teams were truly committed to the spirit of the rule, they would treat it as an opportunity to broaden their horizons during coaching searches and consider candidates who hadn't all followed the same well-trod path. The problem is that they don't actually care about any of that stuff, so instead we often see a lot of cynical box checking where teams interview minority coaches who have virtually no chance of getting the job, just so they can meet the requirements.

I don't know what the answer is. I don't think there is -- nor should there be -- any rule that can fundamentally force teams to change the way they hire. (Also, as the second article points out, nepotistic hiring may be unfair, but it has also produced coaches like McVay and Shanahan, who aren't just great coaches but who may be great coaches precisely because they grew up around the game).

What I do hope happens is that some new owners come along and recognize the situation as a market inefficiency a la Billy Beane in Moneyball. They start hiring differently as a way to gain a competitive advantage. Don't choose your coaches from the same three buckets (hot OC/DC, hot college coach, retread). Come up with a long-term plan and stick to it, rather than blowing everything up every 2-3 years.

We've seen some changes at the margins in recent years, and of course, franchises like the Steelers and Ravens have been employing smarter strategies for years (it boggles my mind that more teams haven't consciously tried to copy their methods). But I'm not holding my breath that we'll see widespread adoption of new hiring practices anytime soon.

 
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Soulfly3

Footballguy
does it really matter to them, when no matter how bad they perform, they all still turn massive profits?

It's a literal no lose situation. you hire your buddies and whatever happens, happens. 

 

ignatiusjreilly

Footballguy
does it really matter to them, when no matter how bad they perform, they all still turn massive profits?

It's a literal no lose situation. you hire your buddies and whatever happens, happens. 
If they're just looking at it as a business investment, sure, it's no lose. But these guys are all super competitive, so I'd imagine they would like to make lots of money AND have a few Super Bowl rings as well.

 

wgoldsph

Footballguy
If they're just looking at it as a business investment, sure, it's no lose. But these guys are all super competitive, so I'd imagine they would like to make lots of money AND have a few Super Bowl rings as well.
You say that, but super competitive wants to win at all cost owner Jerry Jones keeps hiring yes men, to the point where he'll fire good coaches in the middle of superbowl runs to find ones that will bow to his whims.

 

ignatiusjreilly

Footballguy
You say that, but super competitive wants to win at all cost owner Jerry Jones keeps hiring yes men, to the point where he'll fire good coaches in the middle of superbowl runs to find ones that will bow to his whims.
Exactly. I don't think it's because guys like Jones or Daniel Snyder don't really want to win. I think it's because they keep shooting themselves in the foot.

 

massraider

Footballguy
Exactly. I don't think it's because guys like Jones or Daniel Snyder don't really want to win. I think it's because they keep shooting themselves in the foot.


The first thing every fan should root for is an owner who doesn't want to play fantasy football with his team. 

 

zed2283

Footballguy
I think winning trumps everything for most of these guys.  So in the end they will hire the best people, the cream will rise to the top, etc.  There are some who just can't get out of their own way though, as mentioned earlier.  I don't think that really has to do with hiring practices.

I'm pretty tired of every pre-game show and every broadcast crew demanding that every coordinator get a head coaching job.

 

TampaMike19

Footballguy
This type of arrogance believes sustained excellence in NFL and the times are always good, but this is when businesses get cocky and start to decline.

I'm not predicting the decline of the NFL, but arrogance, worse product, bad officiating, growth of other sports, the perfect confluence in the next 5 years to show these stubborn owners. But IDK

 

dhockster

Footballguy
Exhibit A: The NFL Keeps Failing Hiring 101

Exhibit B: Just How Big A Problem Is Nepotism In NFL Coaching?

I don't want to turn this into a discussion of the Rooney Rule, partly because I think it's a highly flawed mechanism and partly because I always find those types of discussions end up being unproductive. But one thing I've noticed is that often people who oppose the RR seem to have an underlying assumption that it's a violation of some kind of natural, meritocratic order. And articles like the ones above highlight how mistaken that assumption is. 

IMO, the problem ultimately boils down to this: the final decision maker will always be the owner, and owners are pretty much all a bunch of (temperamentally) conservative old dudes who made their money in the Old Economy. And the decisions they make reflect exactly the biases you would expect to see from a group like that: an overreliance on safe, traditional choices, an overemphasis on existing relationships (hence all the nepotism), and zero belief in the idea that diverse hiring practices are a smart business strategy (and for the record, when I say "diverse" I'm referring to far more than just race).

In fact, one reason I've moved away from my initial lukewarm support of the Rooney Rule is because I've concluded it doesn't really address the underlying issue. If teams were truly committed to the spirit of the rule, they would treat it as an opportunity to broaden their horizons during coaching searches and consider candidates who hadn't all followed the same well-trod path. The problem is that they don't actually care about any of that stuff, so instead we often see a lot of cynical box checking where teams interview minority coaches who have virtually no chance of getting the job, just so they can meet the requirements.

I don't know what the answer is. I don't think there is -- nor should there be -- any rule that can fundamentally force teams to change the way they hire. (Also, as the second article points out, nepotistic hiring may be unfair, but it has also produced coaches like McVay and Shanahan, who aren't just great coaches but who may be great coaches precisely because they grew up around the game).

What I do hope happens is that some new owners come along and recognize the situation as a market inefficiency a la Billy Beane in Moneyball. They start hiring differently as a way to gain a competitive advantage. Don't choose your coaches from the same three buckets (hot OC/DC, hot college coach, retread). Come up with a long-term plan and stick to it, rather than blowing everything up every 2-3 years.

We've seen some changes at the margins in recent years, and of course, franchises like the Steelers and Ravens have been employing smarter strategies for years (it boggles my mind that more teams haven't consciously tried to copy their methods). But I'm not holding my breath that we'll see widespread adoption of new hiring practices anytime soon.
Your Exhibit A does not link to anything.

As to your overall point: part of the problem you see with NFL franchises is you have some owners who acquire their franchises because they are passionate about football and have had success financially, so they can buy an NFL franchise. When those owners die off, they leave the franchises to kids who maybe aren't passionate about football or worse, have none of the necessary skills to be successful running an NFL franchise. Thus, their hiring decisions leave a lot to be desired. Mark Davis with the Raiders, The Ford Family with the Lions, Cal McNair with the Texans, are just a few examples. 

This problem of incompetent heirs running franchises will continue as long as the NFL continues to be a "can't lose" investment for these families. As long as winning or losing doesn't determine whether a franchise is successful or not, families will continue to own rather than sell franchises because the franchises help them to continue to accumulate wealth.

 

Summer Wheat

Footballguy
Just the way of sports today.   NBA is same way. NCAA is same way.  LSU HC wins a Natty and is fired less than 2 years later.  

One thing to remember in all sports, players come and go, coaches come and go.  The pool of players and coaches is endless and always will be.

The game is the machine and only constant and at the end of every season there will be a champion crowned.

 

worrierking

Footballguy
This is in an interesting topic.  The Ringer article talks about finding good general manager candidates in the analytics world and among the salary cap experts.  I would add that teams need to be hiring experts from the gaming industry who have better understandings of risk/reward and odds. James Holzhauer would probably make a great addition to a front office.

One of the problems in hiring coaches is that so many wins are being sucked up by the long-term guys.  Andy Reid, Belichick, Payton, Tomlin, etc.  These guys as a group probably average around ten wins per year.  That leaves a lot of other coaches who are in their first through third years ending up with 6-9 wins and being shown the door, possibly prematurely. 

Another issue is how different the college and NFL games are and how the differences in skills needed may taint the hiring pool.  Recruiting is 60-80% of success in college ball, so that guy succeeding in college may be uniquely good at recruiting, a skill that has almost no impact at the NFL level.  And it's not always easy to filter that skill out when trying to evaluate a coach. 

 
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eighsse

Footballguy
I mean ... the person in charge of hiring hires a guy he wants to hire. Sometimes they suck. Then they usually are replaced. Not really seeing the issue. What are we hoping for: every team is run well, coached impeccably, and full of talented players -- and they're all so great that every team goes 7-9, 8-8, or 9-7 every year? I don't think I could watch that. I think a lot of times guys get fired after a year or two strictly due to pressure, because of the optics of a bad season. There are only 128 wins to go around each regular season. Everyone can't be awesome. Hey, if your head coach and staff can't break the 6-win mark after 5 years of a rebuild, yeah, it's probably not working. But I'm sure a lot of Bengals fans wanted Taylor fired after his first, and/or his second year. Gotta give a guy a chance.

Granted, I get the nepotism thing (learned a new word today 🌟), and how Zimmer hiring his son is probably not a great call. But if it was his call to decide whom to hire, and he wanted to hire his son ... Let me crunch some numbers here ... oh yeah: he is going to hire his son. If Mike's boss thinks that's idiotic, his boss can fire him. "Huh, things are starting to come together now, this could actually work ..."

 

ignatiusjreilly

Footballguy
As to your overall point: part of the problem you see with NFL franchises is you have some owners who acquire their franchises because they are passionate about football and have had success financially, so they can buy an NFL franchise. When those owners die off, they leave the franchises to kids who maybe aren't passionate about football or worse, have none of the necessary skills to be successful running an NFL franchise. Thus, their hiring decisions leave a lot to be desired. Mark Davis with the Raiders, The Ford Family with the Lions, Cal McNair with the Texans, are just a few examples. 

This problem of incompetent heirs running franchises will continue as long as the NFL continues to be a "can't lose" investment for these families. As long as winning or losing doesn't determine whether a franchise is successful or not, families will continue to own rather than sell franchises because the franchises help them to continue to accumulate wealth.
I agree this is part of the problem (and of course, you're not going to expect wealthy heirs to crack down on nepotism hires by their coaches), but doesn't explain all of it. After all, the Steelers are a multi-generational family business that has been consistently well-run for decades. Meanwhile, the fact that Daniel Snyder isn't a legacy hire hasn't stopped him from running WFT into the ground.

Anyway, you'd expect that as more new blood enters the league you'd see more efforts to shake things up. Jerry Jones certainly did that on the business side three decades ago (he was largely responsible for the Fox deal in the '90s that ushered in a new era of TV contracts), though he's obviously been less successful on the football side. Meanwhile, David Tepper in Carolina seems like the type of New Money owner you more typically see in the NBA. He appears to have screwed up his first coaching hire,  but who knows? Maybe he just needs to give Rhule more time. Or maybe he'll learn from his mistakes and get the next one right. Or maybe he'll never get it right and just muddle through while still making gobs of money.

 

dhockster

Footballguy
This is in an interesting topic.  The Ringer article talks about finding good general manager candidates in the analytics world and among the salary cap experts.  I would add that teams need to be hiring experts from the gaming industry who have better understandings of risk/reward and odds. James Holzhauer would probably make a great addition to a front office.

One of the problems in hiring coaches is that so many wins are being sucked up by the long-term guys.  Andy Reid, Belichick, Payton, Tomlin, etc.  These guys as a group probably average around ten wins per year.  That leaves a lot of other coaches who are in their first through third years ending up with 6-9 wins and being shown the door, possibly prematurely. 

Another issue is how different the college and NFL games are and how the differences in skills needed may taint the hiring pool.  Recruiting is 60-80% of success in college ball, so that guy succeeding in college may be uniquely good at recruiting, a skill that has almost no impact at the NFL level.  And it's not always easy to filter that skill out when trying to evaluate a coach. 
To the bolded: See Lou Holtz, Steve Spurrier, Urban Meyer

 

Long Ball Larry

Footballguy
Your Exhibit A does not link to anything.

As to your overall point: part of the problem you see with NFL franchises is you have some owners who acquire their franchises because they are passionate about football and have had success financially, so they can buy an NFL franchise. When those owners die off, they leave the franchises to kids who maybe aren't passionate about football or worse, have none of the necessary skills to be successful running an NFL franchise. Thus, their hiring decisions leave a lot to be desired. Mark Davis with the Raiders, The Ford Family with the Lions, Cal McNair with the Texans, are just a few examples. 

This problem of incompetent heirs running franchises will continue as long as the NFL continues to be a "can't lose" investment for these families. As long as winning or losing doesn't determine whether a franchise is successful or not, families will continue to own rather than sell franchises because the franchises help them to continue to accumulate wealth.


I think that more of the issue has to do with your first point.  These people who buy the franchises have had success financially in other businesses and 1) think that they know everything and/or are the most important person in the world and 2) don't know anything about how to run a sports franchise.  Its a business, but not the same as most other businesses.

 

dhockster

Footballguy
This is in an interesting topic.  The Ringer article talks about finding good general manager candidates in the analytics world and among the salary cap experts.  I would add that teams need to be hiring experts from the gaming industry who have better understandings of risk/reward and odds. James Holzhauer would probably make a great addition to a front office.

One of the problems in hiring coaches is that so many wins are being sucked up by the long-term guys.  Andy Reid, Belichick, Payton, Tomlin, etc.  These guys as a group probably average around ten wins per year.  That leaves a lot of other coaches who are in their first through third years ending up with 6-9 wins and being shown the door, possibly prematurely. 

Another issue is how different the college and NFL games are and how the differences in skills needed may taint the hiring pool.  Recruiting is 60-80% of success in college ball, so that guy succeeding in college may be uniquely good at recruiting, a skill that has almost no impact at the NFL level.  And it's not always easy to filter that skill out when trying to evaluate a coach. 


Agree with the problem about hiring college coaches. The other big pool of coaching candidates is the NFL offensive and defensive coordinators. Unfortunately, just because you are a good coordinator, does not necessarily mean you will be a good head coach. Different skill set. I see far too many coordinators get hired as head coach, and continue to do what they did as coordinator and just hire a coordinator to coach the other side of the (offense or defense). They never truly manage both sides of the ball. 

 

dhockster

Footballguy
I think that more of the issue has to do with your first point.  These people who buy the franchises have had success financially in other businesses and 1) think that they know everything and/or are the most important person in the world and 2) don't know anything about how to run a sports franchise.  Its a business, but not the same as most other businesses.
True. But as least they have been successful managing or building something. A lot of owner's kids were literally born with silver spoons in their months and haven't had to do anything to be in the owner's chair other than get born and have their father (or mother) die. Cal McNair, to me, is a perfect example of this. Took the Texans over in 2019 and is running them into the ground.

 
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Long Ball Larry

Footballguy
The other big pool of coaching candidates is the NFL offensive and defensive coordinators. Unfortunately, just because you are a good coordinator, does not necessarily mean you will be a good head coach. Different skill set. I see far too many coordinators get hired as head coach, and continue to do what they did as coordinator and just hire a coordinator to coach the other side of the (offense or defense). They never truly manage both sides of the ball. 


I think that this is probably the core issue of it all.  No matter who you are, predicting who will be a good head coach is really ####### hard.

This podcast a couple weeks ago was fantastic in diving into the whole coach search process: The Athletic Football Show: A show about the NFL: Evaluating the hiring process for NFL head coaches and GMs with Amy Trask, Domonique Foxworth & Joe Barry on Apple Podcasts

As an aside, the weekly edition of the Athletic Football Show that Robert Mays does with Mitchell Schwartz is the absolute ####.

 

IvanKaramazov

Footballguy
And the decisions they make reflect exactly the biases you would expect to see from a group like that: an overreliance on safe, traditional choices, an overemphasis on existing relationships (hence all the nepotism), and zero belief in the idea that diverse hiring practices are a smart business strategy (and for the record, when I say "diverse" I'm referring to far more than just race).
I don't think I agree with this at all, or at least not in today's NFL.  Brandon Staley, for example, is a lot of things -- a safe, traditional choice is not one of them.  

The reason why so many head coaches fail is pretty easy to diagnose.  Head coaches are really managers, not coaches.  The skills and abilities that make you a good coordinator might sort of carry over into head coaching, but not really.  It's just a fact of life that a large number of these people aren't going to pan out, and that's okay.  It's not a sign that anybody's doing anything wrong, just a symptom of having to make high-impact decisions on the basis of next to no information.

 

Chaka

Footballguy
If they're just looking at it as a business investment, sure, it's no lose. But these guys are all super competitive, so I'd imagine they would like to make lots of money AND have a few Super Bowl rings as well.
I wouldn't underestimate the percentage of owners to whom winning is a secondary, or tertiary, concern.  Churning coaching staffs after a couple down seasons is not necessarily a competitive issue it's good business, it keeps the fans invested.

Winning a Lombardi probably has less value to a lot of these guys than your average FBG values winning their main fantasy league.

 

Ilov80s

Footballguy
The bigger point is that most of these owners aren't super savy or business geniuses or out working the competition. They just landed in the right place at the right time, took a long shot gamble that hit, relied on a lot of really good people below them who likely have moved on and up. 

 

Chaka

Footballguy
The bigger point is that most of these owners aren't super savy or business geniuses or out working the competition. They just landed in the right place at the right time, took a long shot gamble that hit, relied on a lot of really good people below them who likely have moved on and up. 
Wait, the billionaires aren't good at business?

 

Chaka

Footballguy
Not necessarily, just like many kings weren't good statesmen. Plus we aren't talking good business, we are talking about building the best product. 
Yes but you said many of them aren't savvy and didn't out work competition to amass their fortunes. And that seems a little specious.  There are some teams that have inherited successors (Denver, Las Vegas, Detroit, Chicago etc) and I am sure that many of the ones who purchased their teams were born with financial advantages that allowed them to amass such outrageous fortunes. But the idea that these aren't savvy, highly driven people probably wouldn't hold up to scrutiny.

 

Ilov80s

Footballguy
Yes but you said many of them aren't savvy and didn't out work competition to amass their fortunes. And that seems a little specious.  There are some teams that have inherited successors (Denver, Las Vegas, Detroit, Chicago etc) and I am sure that many of the ones who purchased their teams were born with financial advantages that allowed them to amass such outrageous fortunes. But the idea that these aren't savvy, highly driven people probably wouldn't hold up to scrutiny.
The Giants owner got the team when he hit a miracle horse parlay. No joke, Mara used those winnings to buy the Giants.  I am not saying the owners are dumb or even average. I am just saying they aren't super geniuses. Harvesting success is tough. It requires  a lot of effort and skill but also a lot of luck and support. Just because you made $3 billion in the internet boom doesn't mean you can run a title winning professional sports team. 

 

Uruk-Hai

Footballguy
Exhibit A: The NFL Keeps Failing Hiring 101

Exhibit B: Just How Big A Problem Is Nepotism In NFL Coaching?

I don't want to turn this into a discussion of the Rooney Rule, partly because I think it's a highly flawed mechanism and partly because I always find those types of discussions end up being unproductive. But one thing I've noticed is that often people who oppose the RR seem to have an underlying assumption that it's a violation of some kind of natural, meritocratic order. And articles like the ones above highlight how mistaken that assumption is. 

IMO, the problem ultimately boils down to this: the final decision maker will always be the owner, and owners are pretty much all a bunch of (temperamentally) conservative old dudes who made their money in the Old Economy. And the decisions they make reflect exactly the biases you would expect to see from a group like that: an overreliance on safe, traditional choices, an overemphasis on existing relationships (hence all the nepotism), and zero belief in the idea that diverse hiring practices are a smart business strategy (and for the record, when I say "diverse" I'm referring to far more than just race).

In fact, one reason I've moved away from my initial lukewarm support of the Rooney Rule is because I've concluded it doesn't really address the underlying issue. If teams were truly committed to the spirit of the rule, they would treat it as an opportunity to broaden their horizons during coaching searches and consider candidates who hadn't all followed the same well-trod path. The problem is that they don't actually care about any of that stuff, so instead we often see a lot of cynical box checking where teams interview minority coaches who have virtually no chance of getting the job, just so they can meet the requirements.

I don't know what the answer is. I don't think there is -- nor should there be -- any rule that can fundamentally force teams to change the way they hire. (Also, as the second article points out, nepotistic hiring may be unfair, but it has also produced coaches like McVay and Shanahan, who aren't just great coaches but who may be great coaches precisely because they grew up around the game).

What I do hope happens is that some new owners come along and recognize the situation as a market inefficiency a la Billy Beane in Moneyball. They start hiring differently as a way to gain a competitive advantage. Don't choose your coaches from the same three buckets (hot OC/DC, hot college coach, retread). Come up with a long-term plan and stick to it, rather than blowing everything up every 2-3 years.

We've seen some changes at the margins in recent years, and of course, franchises like the Steelers and Ravens have been employing smarter strategies for years (it boggles my mind that more teams haven't consciously tried to copy their methods). But I'm not holding my breath that we'll see widespread adoption of new hiring practices anytime soon.
It's interesting you mention these two franchises together, since their ownership backgrounds couldn't be more different.

The Rooney's have owned the Steelers since before Nero got his fiddle.

And Bisciotti is a young(ish) "new money" owner who made his fortune starting a personnel-placement company (which probably explains why he's been pretty successful with his NFL hires). He was a construction laborer while trying to get his business off the ground.

But despite the different roads traveled, you're right in that both franchises have had remarkably similar results based on forward-thinking processes. Both ownerships are also behind-the-scenes types.

I usually only see/hear anything from the Rooneys when they're getting a trophy handed to them, or someone in the organization either retires or wins an award.

Most people don't even know what Bisciotti looks like. He gives one post mortem press conference a year after Baltimore's season is over, and that's it. And even then, he lets the coaches and FO folks do the talking. He got lucky with Harbaugh (it was Jason Garret's job to turn down), but I think he knows what he's doing.

 

SeniorVBDStudent

Footballguy
one consideration....

how many owners just want to print money versus fully commit to winning it all?  I suspect most people would guess 3 or 4 and the real answer is 8 or 10.  if the premise is correct, you just want leadership that can deliver .500 and hopefully avoid 2-15 seasons.

then you have the one-off owners like Snyder who just wants a cheerleader farming enterprise and Kahn who just wants to lead the push to NFL presence in Europe (via the London Jaguars).

 

lod001

Footballguy
Some teams just cannot get past hiring recycled losers. See Denver recently. These losers should not even be given interviews. I sure hope Quinn doesn't get a HC job. He's a DC and thats it.

I always find it funny when some loser gets hired and brings in the losers he lost with before. Like Denver did with their loser HC/OC combo. The 2 fired Denver clowns should never step foot on a football field again.

Caldwell, no, he's horrible.

McCarthy - seen enough yet Dallas? Why is he still the coach?

Bienemy, give him a shot.

Flores, give him a shot cause man did he get screwed. Wouldn't call him recycled cause he got screwed. That team sucked and he won games.

 

massraider

Footballguy
SeniorVBDStudent said:
one consideration....

how many owners just want to print money versus fully commit to winning it all?  I suspect most people would guess 3 or 4 and the real answer is 8 or 10.  if the premise is correct, you just want leadership that can deliver .500 and hopefully avoid 2-15 seasons.

then you have the one-off owners like Snyder who just wants a cheerleader farming enterprise and Kahn who just wants to lead the push to NFL presence in Europe (via the London Jaguars).


I think most owners spend enough to win. One of the best features of the NFL is that more than any other major sport, you cannot buy a winning team.  If you don't have a combination of stability, good drafts, luck, and a nice run of health, you won't win the Super Bowl. You just won't. There are definitely teams more committed to winning, I know what you mean. I would love to see what each team spent on college scouting each year. How have we never gotten that kind of data? Do the Patriots have twice as many college scouts as Cincy? 

I think there's two different complaints here, and both have different reasons for being valid:

1.  Decision-making/hiring by owners.
2.  Hiring of coaching staffs. 

1. No one buys an NFL team anymore and then keeps a low profile. You are buying fame, for those that didn't have it.And buying a limited entry into that life.  And it's kind of funny to think about it like this but: None of them have ever done this before, they have NO experience as an NFL owner. So, I want my fame-hungry new owner, who made his money selling frozen pizza, then married well, to make a savvy decision in terms of front office personnel? This seems like a lot to ask. It feels like a lot of them, impatience is their biggest problem. If they are the type that has billions, wait and see probably hasn't been a big part of their success. 

2. Everything is connections, everything is LinkedIn. Every single coaching hire will fill out their staff within one degree of people they've worked with. That's crazy. That's how restaurants hire the bar staff, that's not how you try and build an exceptional coaching staff.    

 

Da Guru

Fair & Balanced
worrierking said:
This is in an interesting topic.  The Ringer article talks about finding good general manager candidates in the analytics world and among the salary cap experts.  I would add that teams need to be hiring experts from the gaming industry who have better understandings of risk/reward and odds. James Holzhauer would probably make a great addition to a front office.

One of the problems in hiring coaches is that so many wins are being sucked up by the long-term guys.  Andy Reid, Belichick, Payton, Tomlin, etc.  These guys as a group probably average around ten wins per year.  That leaves a lot of other coaches who are in their first through third years ending up with 6-9 wins and being shown the door, possibly prematurely. 

Another issue is how different the college and NFL games are and how the differences in skills needed may taint the hiring pool.  Recruiting is 60-80% of success in college ball, so that guy succeeding in college may be uniquely good at recruiting, a skill that has almost no impact at the NFL level.  And it's not always easy to filter that skill out when trying to evaluate a coach. 


In the NFL the "wins" are sucked up by good QB play over coaches.    Mahomes with Reid, Brady with BB, Brees with Payton, Tomlin took over Pitt with a young franchise QB in Big Ben, Rodgers is good for 10+ wins a year with whoever is the HC.  Dungy won with Manning.  Caldwell went 14-2 with Manning, the next season went 2-14 when Manning was hurt.  So who is more important?

Any of those coaches have a team with a lousy QB and they are all fired in 2-4 seasons. Without being able to "recruit" a new QB every year it makes even that more difficult to succeed without a star QB.

 

travdogg

Footballguy
They also stink at firing. Ravens fired Don Martindale, who is probably a top-5 DC, and was a HC candidate as recently as a year ago. Now the Ravens did fall from top-10 to bottom-10 in defense, but they also had what 7 DB's on IR?

 

Chaka

Footballguy
Ilov80s said:
The Giants owner got the team when he hit a miracle horse parlay. No joke, Mara used those winnings to buy the Giants.  I am not saying the owners are dumb or even average. I am just saying they aren't super geniuses. Harvesting success is tough. It requires  a lot of effort and skill but also a lot of luck and support. Just because you made $3 billion in the internet boom doesn't mean you can run a title winning professional sports team. 
Agreed. I think many, if not most owners care far more about the profit side of the game than winning a title.

IMO we care far more about winning our fantasy leagues than most owners care about winning a Lombardi.

 

Uruk-Hai

Footballguy
They also stink at firing. Ravens fired Don Martindale, who is probably a top-5 DC, and was a HC candidate as recently as a year ago. Now the Ravens did fall from top-10 to bottom-10 in defense, but they also had what 7 DB's on IR?
I don't think Wink and Harbaugh got along very well.

Martindale was, as you say, playing shorthanded all year. He won't stay unemployed long, unless he wants to (Ravens owe him for next year).

 

Long Ball Larry

Footballguy
They also stink at firing. Ravens fired Don Martindale, who is probably a top-5 DC, and was a HC candidate as recently as a year ago. Now the Ravens did fall from top-10 to bottom-10 in defense, but they also had what 7 DB's on IR?
hiring and firing are both more complicated than just where the offense and defense rank.  

as many have noted, just because you have a top 5 offense as a coordinator doesn't mean you should be a head coach.  Likewise, a coordinator's defensive ranking is not the only thing that goes into whether he should keep his job.  maybe when those defensive backs went out, other coaches tried to suggest that he should try some different things and he refused.  maybe he showed that he was less able to get along with the other backup players or evaluate who should be playing more or less.  i really have no idea and neither does anyone else other than the people inside the team.  that's not to say that he can't or won't succeed in a future job.  but just as important as your football strategy is your fit with a particular organization and your adaptability.  that is what leads to sustained success in a particular job.

 

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