The realistic NFL coach of the year award candidates are generally separated into two categories. The first of which is a coach that comes from a team that has already had success and is able to improve on that success, or at the very least, is able to maintain that same level of success.
The second category from which said candidates come from, is that of a team who has been under performing in previous years only have a first or second year coach come in and turn things around in a short period of time. Over the past 20 years, most recipients of this award have fallen into one of these two categories.
We’ve identified two possible candidates that not only fit the bill, but have favorable odds to put some real dough in the pockets of bettors. But let’s first take a look at the top-10 candidates in terms of odds from our friends at William Hill.
Bill Belichick 17-2
Kyle Shanahan 14-1
Bruce Arians 12-1
Mike McCarthy 14-1
Kliff Kingsbury 14-1
Frank Reich 14-1
Kevin Stefanski 15-1
Andy Reid 18-1
Sean McDermott 18-1
Brian Flores 20-1
Kliff Kingsbury 14-1 – Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals showed some sign of progress last season by finishing the year with a 5-10-1 record. On paper their record was not very impressive, however a deeper dive into their situation shows that they achieved more than was expected of them.
Arizona was working with not only a first year coach in Kingsbury, but also a first year quarterback in Kyler Murray. For this team to come out the gates by notching five, nearly six wins, proves that that boys in the desert may be on to something. They play a unique style of offense which will only get better with another year under their belts, not to mention the addition of DeAndre Hopkins. They’ve also bolstered their defense by adding players on the other side of the ball as well.
Look for the Cardinals to to not only improve on last year’s showing, but don’t be surprised to see Arizona finish the year with 9-11 wins. It will surely put Kingsbury in the conversation for Coach of the Year.
Follow the Heavy on Winners Facebook page for the latest breaking news, picks and content!
Mike McCarthy 14-1 – Dallas Cowboys
McCarthy is an entirely different boat than Kingsbury in the sense that he is walking into a ready made team with a plethora of talent. McCarthy’s main goal is going to be personnel management. It’s not a secret that there are plenty of ego’s to be massaged among players, but the biggest ego of all starts at the top with Mr. Jones himself.
Jerry Jones manages to insert himself in almost every aspect of the organization whether it be on draft selections, playing time or simply the need to be in the public spotlight every chance he gets.
Admittedly, I’m not a Cowboys expert, but simply observing from a neutral third party perspective. If McMcarthy can manage 10-12 wins and a playoff berth, it would be a travesty for his name not to be seriously considered for this award.
Without listing the entire field of coaches above, we’d be remiss if we didn’t at least mention two coaches that caught our eye. Mike Vrabel (30-1) and Pete Carroll (35-1) are the two names that deserve some recognition. Their only downfall is that they aren’t the new flashy “sportscar” type coach. Carroll has had plenty of success and Vrabel was the flashy new toy last season.
Granted, these are bad reasons to discount great coaches like these, but human nature is what is.
Picks: Kingsbury & McMcarthy
Honorable Mention: Vrabel & Carroll
*Odds provided by William Hill