Hey you on the sidelines, get your resume ready!

First of all ... welcome to Daddy's Sugar Ball! I hope you enjoy your time here and please let us know what you think in the comments.

Secondly, I am working on a mid-season review of the NFL season (which will be posted later in the week) but I wanted to share my thoughts today on a topic that I think could become pretty huge.

By the end of the NFL year, it is quite possible that there will be 13 out of a possible 32 head coaching positions open … that kind of turnover is rivaled only at places like Hardee’s (still deep frying ‘em) and Arby’s. And with this many possible openings after the season, it’s probably the best occupation for employment in this struggling economy.

Here’s a breakdown…

Current Interim Head Coaches

  • Tom Cable (Oakland) – The "Cable Guy" is doing about as well at the helm as that movie’s box office receipts. One day after the sun has gone down, Al Davis will rise from his crypt and appoint some young coordinator desperate enough for a head coaching position.
  • Jim Haslett (St. Louis) – The NFL struck down an agreement that he would be named the permanent head coach if he won 6 games the rest of the way. Even though he’s 1/3 of the way there, I think whoever in the Rams front office included this stipulation is a genius … I saw Jim Haslett in New Orleans and there’s no chance that this is attainable. Just because you’re better than Scott Linehan, does not make you a viable head coaching candidate.
  • Mike Singletary (San Fran) – Let me see if I have this right … you’ve been passed over for numerous positions because decision-makers didn’t believe you were "ready" and at halftime of your very first game as head coach you choose to drop your pants to fire up your team. I only have one question – who had the worst view: those in front or those in back?

Planned Exits

  • Mike Holmgren (Seattle) – Rumor has it he wants to take a year off and open a coffee shop or a winery or something else (let’s hope it isn’t a bed & breakfast). Rumor also has it that the 49ers will throw the kitchen sink at him to convince him to come there. Either way his tenure in the Pacific Northwest is done.
  • Tony Dungy (Indy) – As much as the Colts have struggled this year (and they still have a chance to turn it around with a healthy Bob Sanders and Joseph Addai), I find it tough to believe that anyone would want to go out this way. But I truly believe Dungy is sincere about his intentions and motivations.

How Do These Guys Still Have a Job?

  • Rod Marinelli (Detroit) – 10-30 career record and still taking pride in his players’ efforts. This is the NFL … effort means squat … wins and losses are where it’s at. At this point, maybe you should just hit up the Wendy’s drive thru with your assistant.
  • Marvin Lewis (Cincy) – Wasn’t this man considered a defensive genius at one point? Cincy is allowing 331+ yards and 26.2 points a game and that’s playing in the offensively challenged AFC North. Things are ending so badly in Cincy for Lewis that I’m not even sure he can get a coordinator position for at least a couple of years.
  • Herm Edwards (Chiefs) – Why do we play the game, Herm? I thought so…

Crumbling Under Expectations

  • Romeo Crennel (Cleveland) – Let me get one thing straight, I dislike Bill Belichick. But the more I see Charlie Weis and Crennel-coached teams, the more I realize Belichick really might be a freakin’ genius in covering for their incompetence those years they were on his staff.
  • Norv Turner (San Diego) – This is Norv’s third head coaching go-round. He deserves some recognition for getting someone (anyone) to hire him after his first attempt (let alone his second). Norv was once thought of as an offensive genius, but I guess that’s pretty easy when you have Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith, and Michael Irvin running the plays you call. On a side note, who would have ever thought that all three of them would get high profile commentator gigs that none of them were in any way qualified for?
  • Wade Phillips (Dallas) – This is also Wade’s third head coaching go-round. However, one of those was on an interim basis in Buffalo and this time he’s really just an assistant to Coach Jerry Jones these days. One quick question for Cowboys fans: who had more control over the team, Wade Phillips or Dave Campo? Also, maybe it’s just me - but should an NFL coach celebrate like he’s an 'O' away from winning on his bingo card every time something good happens during a game?
  • Jack Del Rio (Jaguars) – The Jags came into this season as the "sexy" AFC pick for the Super Bowl. The Jags have lost that "sexy" tag about as fast as Eva Longoria after she got married to Tony Parker (seriously…have you seen her lately?) I know owner Wayne Weaver loves Del Rio but the farther this season goes in the crapper, the more someone will have to pay. Hey Jack - I would break out the motivational ax ASAP.
  • Brad Childress (Vikings) – I actually think Childress made the right call in benching Tavaris Jackson for Gus Frerotte very early in the season. However, Frerotte isn’t the answer for a team that was many experts’ NFC pick for the Super Bowl this year. However, in a clustered division they still have eight games left to salvage their season and their head coach’s job.

The question for these teams is where they turn for their next head coach. Let’s look at the possible scenarios:

The Retread Coach
This only seems to work where the coach was unfairly fired from his previous position or prematurely stepped away from the game. For every Bill Cowher and Marty Schottenheimer that is available out there, there are tons of Steve Mariuccis and Denny Greens. If a head coach doesn’t have that fire in his belly, I’m not sure guaranteeing him a boatload of cash is going to stoke the flames.

The College Coach
The recent high profile failures of Nick Saban and Bobby Petrino make many a GM or owner forget about even worse colossal failures such as Lou Holtz or Steve Spurrier. Another glaring example is Pete Carroll. Widely considered one of the best current college coaches around, in the pros he was a mediocre 33-31 with the Patriots and Jets. Simply put, avoid the college coach like the crazy chick at the bar - - there’s a 1 in 1,000 chance that picking the college coach/crazy chick will be the right decision a year from now.

The Assistant Coach
In the current state of the NFL, hiring and promoting an intelligent assistant coach seems to be the way to go. It seems like lots of NFL teams are reaping the rewards in finding quality coaches already from within organizations (theirs or others). The head coaches from the AFC’s best 2 teams - Mike Tomlin in Pittsburgh and Jeff Fisher in Tennessee – were both defensive coordinators for a paltry one year before ascending to the top spot. Also, hiring from non-coordinator positions has become a noticeable trend over the last few years. Resurgent franchises in Baltimore and Miami have John Harbaugh (special teams) and Tony Sparano (offensive line) at the helm.

So what does it all mean? If I were Steve Spagnuolo, Mike Heimerdinger, Winston Moss, or any other talented assistant that could nail an interview I would make sure my resume is updated come mid-January.

Thanks for coming and suckling on Daddy’s Sugar Ball.

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