Well the fantasy football season is over except for those who play in playoff leagues and so it is time to start putting some bows on the season that was 2010. Tonight I am going to talk a little about the coaching vacancies that have already occurred and discuss what went wrong with the ousted regime and speculate on what direction these teams might be heading in next. In the coming days I will be giving out my 2010 Fantasy Alarm Football Awards, giving a rundown on backup QB’s and making some playoff predictions. There is still plenty of football left to talk about so please continue reading our In The Trenches Blog to quench your football thirst.
John Fox – Carolina Panthers – Fox was told that he and his staff would not be retained in 2011 just before the team took the field in week 17. This was pretty much a forgone conclusion as Fox was a lame duck who’s team proved to be the worst in the NFL. I still think Fox is a capable coach who has a Super Bowl appearance on his resume and should garner some consideration for other head coach openings around the league. But it has to be noted that the Panthers weren’t depleted of talent and although injuries really put the fork in them later on this team has underperformed for the past couple of seasons despite having some All-Pro’s on the roster. It is believed that ownership favors bringing in a proven NFL coordinator preferably from the defensive side and thus the names Perry Fewell and Ron Rivera currently reside atop the list of prospective replacements. The key for whoever takes over this job will be to hire a good offensive coordinator who can develop a young QB whether it be Jimmy Clausen or probably #1 overall pick Andrew Luck. The Panthers need a QB and the offensive system and coaches they bring in will be vital to the development of that QB and thus imperative to the future success of this organization.
Mike Singletary – San Francisco 49ers – I believe that firing Singletary sent the wrong message to this team and could wind up really hurting the development of players such as Vernon Davis, Michael Crabtree and Patrick Willis. Singletary was a hard ass and a throw back type of coach but that style can work still in the NFL if and only if upper management has the coaches back and the players have that understanding. This was not the case in San Francisco this season and thus why the 49ers couldn’t turn their season around after a very poor start. The good news for 49ers fans is that this team has done a fine job in building itself over the past couple of seasons and is poised for a quick turn around once a few key holes are filled. A veteran QB would be an excellent start and I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see Donovan McNabb in a 49er uniform come next season. Of course it all comes down to what head coach they hire and right now the leading candidates are Stanford coach Jim Harbaugh, former Baltimore coach Brian Billick and Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Morninwheg. A wild card candidate for this job is Cleveland general manager Mike Holmgren who has a history in San Francisco and has always maintained an affection for the red and gold.
If you’re looking to cash in one last time on this football season make sure to check out the experts at Wager Alarm. Wager Alarm gives you up to the minute betting lines from over 25 sports books all over the world including online, offshore and of course Vegas. If you want a little more cash for the holidays give yourself a bonus by making the best wager you can with help from Wager Alarm.
Eric Mangini – Cleveland Browns – Mangini had an excellent first season as the head coach of the Jets but has proven without a shadow of a doubt that he was not the brains behind the New England Super Bowl winning dynasty. Mangini might not be fit to be a coordinator in the NFL at this point and may wind up in the broadcast booth during the 2011 season instead of the sidelines. The key in Cleveland is whether or not Mike Holmgren stays in place as the teams executive vice president and general manager. If so we can expect a solid west coast offense installed in Cleveland and a head coach capable of installing and developing this system. Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Morninwheg appears to be a natural fit here as would Jon Gruden if they could lure him out of the broadcast booth.
Wade Phillips – Dallas Cowboys – This appears to be Jason Garrett’s job as an announcement is said to be coming shortly. Still, I wonder about Garrett and the snowballing he gave Wade Phillips in running the Cowboys offense into the ground for the first 12 weeks only to open things up and change the overall approach once he was given the reigns. I am skeptical of Garrett to say the least and you can bet he didn’t win many friends around the league for what the Benedict Arnold act he pulled in Dallas this season.
Brad Childress – Minnesota Vikings – The Vikings moved swiftly in naming defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier as their next head coach. Frazier has been around the league and is definitely deserving of a shot to run the Vikings. It appears that he will be retaining offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell which in my opinion would be a mistake. Bevell is Brett Favre’s buddy and pretty much the only reason he was given the job in the first place. Now that the Favre saga is hopefully in the Vikings rear view mirror so should Darrell Bevell. A faster paced more open offensive system would really help get Vikings players such as Adrian Peterson, Percy Harvin and Sidney Rice back on track and back to being feared by defenses around the league.
Josh McDaniels – Denver Broncos – McDaniels should have never been made a head coach of any team on any level as he just wasn’t ready when he took over for Mike Shanahan in 2009. McDaniels ran Jay Cutler, Brandon Marshall and Tony Scheffler out of town and has the Broncos offense barren of top tier talent at this point. This job seems to be the most delicate of all the openings at this point because whoever comes in will most likely have to be married to Tim Tebow as their starting QB and that right there is a risky proposition. Tebow finished strong but he’s just not a top tier NFL QB and most likely never will be. The Broncos top choice here is Gary Kubiak but it appears that Kubiak will remain with the Houston Texans for at least another year. It is my opinion that the Broncos try everything they can to lure a big name coach such as Bill Cowher, Jon Gruden or hot college candidate Jim Harbaugh. It will take a good sales job though to get any one of these or other big name coaches to take over a team that has been so wiped out of talent these past two years.
Listen to The Fantasy Alarm Show LIVE every Tuesday (9:30 PM EST), Friday (9 PM EST) & Sunday morning (11:30 AM EST) for all the latest fantasy sports news and information.