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Why don’t owners pay out the tookus to keep good assistant coaches? (1 Viewer)

STEADYMOBBIN 22

Footballguy
I have never understood why NFL owners don’t pay out the ### for assistant coaching. Coaches don’t count against the salary cap and it’s an easy way to get a competitive advantage. I get that some guys have egos and they want to be HCs but some are happy with just being the OC or DC. Find and pay those guys. 

I can only assume that the owners are  colluding so they don’t drive up assistant coach salaries. 

Thoughts? 

 

Hankmoody

Footballguy
Because they are under contract and few teams allow good candidates interview for non-promotional opportunities.

 

ConnSKINS26

Footballguy
STEADYMOBBIN 22 said:
I can only assume that the owners are  colluding so they don’t drive up assistant coach salaries.
This is where I fall. I agree that some guys have big enough egos that they have to take bigger opportunities as "the man" to see if they can. That's understandable. But many NFL teams underspend on the regular when it comes to assistant coaches, scouts, analytics departments, training facilities, etc. The stuff without a salary cap that can give you a competitive edge, like you said. I think it comes down to wanting to be perceived as "doing enough" up to a certain point and then being driven completely by profit for everything past wherever each individual team measures "enough". They want to win, yeah. But they want to make and keep millions way more than they want to win imo, at least for most owners. I'm biased as a Washington fan as Snyder is the worst in this regard, he will only spend on obvious outward facing areas of the team. The facilities are trash, they lowball personnel guys and understaff the college scouting room, etc. only spending money where they need to for optics, and doing that poorly too. 

 

menobrown

Footballguy
STEADYMOBBIN 22 said:
I have never understood why NFL owners don’t pay out the ### for assistant coaching. Coaches don’t count against the salary cap and it’s an easy way to get a competitive advantage. I get that some guys have egos and they want to be HCs but some are happy with just being the OC or DC. Find and pay those guys. 

I can only assume that the owners are  colluding so they don’t drive up assistant coach salaries. 

Thoughts? 
Wondered this for years myself. And not just assistant coaches but scouts who are not exactly awesomely compensated for the most part. Like you are saying in a salary cap league it's a competitive advantage to at last pour more money into coaching/scouting.

Best thing I could come up all these years is they just get paid what the market will bear.  It's not like they are athletes and only a few in the world who can do what they do. Still this does not explain why a particular team out there would do buck the trend so to speak and just hire the best of the best. Dallas IMO has done as close a job to this as any team I can recall, something Jerry does not nearly enough credit on.

 

Deamon

Footballguy
I wonder this too.  The jump in salary seems to be insane.  But what if someone is a great DC, and only wants to be a DC, and is the best at it in the league?  Why not pay them close to what the HC is making?

 

zftcg

Footballguy
STEADYMOBBIN 22 said:
I can only assume that the owners are  colluding so they don’t drive up assistant coach salaries. 
It could be that, or it could be a softer form of collusion. Most owners are old-school guys who made their money the old-fashioned way: by busting unions, keeping salaries down and paying "the help" as little as possible. They probably look down their noses at a fellow country-club member who tips the staff too generously, thereby driving up prices for everyone else. Similarly, I suspect if an owner ever did adopt the strategy of spending whatever it took to get top assistants, he would get a lot of icy stares at the next owner's meeting.

 

zftcg

Footballguy
I just came here to comment that "tookus" is the most goyishe spelling of the Yiddish word referring to the human posterior ever written.
Reminds me of the political debate I once saw between two candidates (both non-Jews) where one denounced the other's previous statement as "pure chutz-pah" (pronouncing it the way it's spelled).

 

Stinkin Ref

IBL Representative
I also think some GM's (who probably have more of a say in this decision then people think) sometimes think they are the smartest person in the room when they are not......they think they can overcome not having top flight assistants so they don't want to pay them.....Elway is a perfect example of this in letting Wade Phillips walk because he didn't want to pay him an extra few bucks....

 

Leroy Hoard

Footballguy
If I was an owner I sure as hell would. As already mentioned there is no salary cap for coaches and gms. 

And if the other owners got all sniffy with me I would just flash all my super bowl rings at them. 

I would be Rodney in a club full of Ted Knights.

 

zftcg

Footballguy
If I was an owner I sure as hell would. As already mentioned there is no salary cap for coaches and gms. 

And if the other owners got all sniffy with me I would just flash all my super bowl rings at them. 

I would be Rodney in a club full of Ted Knights.
And that's why you'd never get to own a team in the first place. Lest we forget, Rodney did try to buy the Bills a few years back, and after he got rejected, he had to settle for being POTUS.

(To be clear, I don't believe for a second that Trump would have been smart enough to overpay for assistants. Hell, he'd probably go the other way and stiff them on their salaries.)

 

Leroy Hoard

Footballguy
And that's why you'd never get to own a team in the first place. Lest we forget, Rodney did try to buy the Bills a few years back, and after he got rejected, he had to settle for being POTUS.

(To be clear, I don't believe for a second that Trump would have been smart enough to overpay for assistants. Hell, he'd probably go the other way and stiff them on their salaries.)
I agree with this and its why we don't have this kind of thinking in rich guy clubs. I'd even settle for a Ty Webb.

 

Ilov80s

Footballguy
HC makes more money than coordinators. If the coordinator is getting offers for HC money than he may be kept by paying the coordinator HC money. However that means the HC is going to expect more money. 

 

daveR

Footballguy
If I understand correctly, OC/DC's under contract cannot be contacted by other teams for a horizontal move. (Tampering)  On the other hand, another team is ALWAYS allowed access for a vertical (promotion) move (HC).  So, if that's true, no amount of money can prevent a guy from jumping ship to be HC if that's what he wants.  IMO, it's the power to make things work your own way that drives the decision rather than money or prestige.   

 

zftcg

Footballguy
I agree with this and its why we don't have this kind of thinking in rich guy clubs. I'd even settle for a Ty Webb.
All jokes aside, I think that is a way-underrated explanation for manifestations of conservatism across the NFL, from owner behavior to GMs refusing to sign guys like Kaepernick and Michael Sam to coaches kicking on 4th down.

Did you ever learn about Lamarck in biology class? He was the early evolutionary theorist who thought that evolution occurred within a single generation -- giraffes' necks grew longer to help them reach higher trees. Then Darwin came along and proposed natural selection -- giraffes who had longer necks were more likely to survive and pass on their genes.

I think the NFL naturally selects for conservatism. It's not that coaches think, "I better not go for it on 4th down here or I'll get criticized by the media." It's that in order to reach that position, you were more likely to be a temperamentally conservative, rigidly hierarchical guy who got ahead by doing what he was told and not rocking the boat. By the time you're actually faced with that 4th down decision, everything about your background has already determined what you'll do.

 

Dr. Octopus

Footballguy
If I understand correctly, OC/DC's under contract cannot be contacted by other teams for a horizontal move. (Tampering)
It's not tampering. The team employing the OC/DC has the right to now allow said OC/DC to interview for a lateral move if he's under contract but can not block him from interviewing for a HC position.

 

zftcg

Footballguy
HC makes more money than coordinators. If the coordinator is getting offers for HC money than he may be kept by paying the coordinator HC money. However that means the HC is going to expect more money. 


If I understand correctly, OC/DC's under contract cannot be contacted by other teams for a horizontal move. (Tampering)  On the other hand, another team is ALWAYS allowed access for a vertical (promotion) move (HC).  So, if that's true, no amount of money can prevent a guy from jumping ship to be HC if that's what he wants.  IMO, it's the power to make things work your own way that drives the decision rather than money or prestige.   
In addition to the reasons discussed earlier in the thread, I do think both of these play into it. If the Rams shell out big bucks for Phillips, then they have to give McVay a corresponding bump and then you're looking at an inflationary spiral (and nothing freaks out a rich dude more than the prospect of inflation). Meanwhile, if you're Phillips or **** LeBeau or any one of those guys who have a long track record of being a great DC and a mediocre head coach, your leverage is limited. The Rams can block Phillips from interviewing with any other team for a lateral move, so what's he supposed to do to if he wants more money?

Of course, in Phillips' case, he always seems to wear out his welcome within a few years of taking a job, so he is able to move around, but I guess because of his rep he's not always so in-demand (Washington actually rejected him as DC in 2015 in favor of Joe Barry, who had been the DC on the 0-16 Lions; Phillips "settled" for the Broncos and immediately won a Super Bowl with one of the greatest defenses ever.)

Point is, if the guys who are widely recognized as the best coordinators in the game are facing downward pressure on their salaries, that's going to keep numbers down across the board.

 

Anarchy99

Footballguy
I think the most obvious reason is if the OC would cost more in salary than the HC, that would make for a big problem. If the OC was in such high demand, maybe the original team might want to consider letting the HC go instead. However, I suspect that the OC might be running a variation of the HC's offense, so it wouldn't make a ton of sense to supplant the mentor and replace him with the student.

 

Dr. Octopus

Footballguy
If the OC was in such high demand, maybe the original team might want to consider letting the HC go instead. 
That's pretty much what happened in TB with Koetter replacing Lovie Smith. They were afraid they were going to lose Koetter who was in demand as a HC candidate.

 

zftcg

Footballguy
That's pretty much what happened in TB with Koetter replacing Lovie Smith. They were afraid they were going to lose Koetter who was in demand as a HC candidate.
And Giants with Coughlin/McAdoo. Given the way those two scenarios played out, I suspect we won't see that happen again for awhile.

 

zftcg

Footballguy
And Giants with Coughlin/McAdoo. Given the way those two scenarios played out, I suspect we won't see that happen again for awhile.
BTW, it's also just an obviously bad management strategy. Imagine if that became a common practice. The message you're sending to future HCs is, "Don't hire the best guys available for your staff. Hire the guys who represent the least threat to your job. And if you hire a bright young assistant and he seems to be moving up the ranks, cut him off at the knees before he grows too powerful."

And I say that as a fan of a team that let Sean McVay go and kept his mediocre boss. As frustrating as it is to watch him enjoy so much success in LA, I can't say with certainty that it would have been a good idea to keep him in Washington (though I suspect if Snyder had realized how good he would be as a HC, he might have tried).

 

Neil Beaufort Zod

Footballguy
Coordinators have egos, too. Most of them eventually want to coach their own team.  A few are happy to be career coordinators, but most see the position as a stepping stone to helm their own pro (or maybe college) team. 

I think teams sell their positions by touting the coach's ability to land a head coaching job if things go well, and they'll do everything they can to help facilitate that. Like recruiters trying to sign a high school kid, they promise opportunity and a good fit to get them to come aboard. So it's not that they sit around letting them leave. There's only one head coaching spot per team, and the understanding is that a good coordinator will get a shot to be a head coach somewhere. 

 

fatness

against the grain
Of course, in Phillips' case, he always seems to wear out his welcome within a few years of taking a job, so he is able to move around, but I guess because of his rep he's not always so in-demand (Washington actually rejected him as DC in 2015 in favor of Joe Barry, who had been the DC on the 0-16 Lions; Phillips "settled" for the Broncos and immediately won a Super Bowl with one of the greatest defenses ever.)
Washington rejected him because Jay Gruden rejected him. Jay Gruden won't allow a DC who he thinks might threaten his job via competence.

 

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