Bill Belichick should be the highest-paid coach in the NFL, right? According to a recent report, he’s at least in the top three. On the heels of San Francisco 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan signing a new six-year deal that makes him one of the league’s five highest-paid coaches, many began to wonder how much the New England Patriots‘ legend is raking in for decades of excellence, and a dual role as the de facto general manager.
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Shanahan’s deal is believed to be worth more than $10 million per season, per Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer. It is seemingly impossible to imagine a coach with Belichick’s tenure (20 years with the Patriots), and history of success (six Super Bowl wins, three AP Coach of the Year honors, and a spot on the NFL’s 100th-Year Anniversary Team) not making at least that annually.
Back in 2018, Pro Football Sports Talk’s Mike Florio reported, per a source, Belichick made $12.5 million per season. It is believed Belichick has since signed an extension with Patriots owner Robert Kraft, and that now his annual salary is between $13-14 million, per Ryan Hannable of WEEI.
Assuming that number is accurate, and it seems more than logical, and more like probable, Hannable believes the future Hall-of-Famer is “worth every penny.”
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize Belichick’s accomplishments dwarf Shanahan’s as an NFL coach. Shanahan, who is just 40 years old, has been an offensive coordinator since he was 32 years old. He held to OC spot for four different teams (Washington Redskins, Cleveland Browns, Houston Texans, and Atlanta Falcons) before landing his first head-coaching gig with the 49ers in 2017.
In three seasons at the helm, Shanahan has led the 49ers to just a 23-25 record, though the team was 13-3 in 2019 before being bounced in the Super Bowl by the Kansas City Chiefs. While things are looking up for the young coach if the Niners believe Shanahan is worth such a hefty investment, there’s no question Belichick should be collecting money hand over fist from Kraft.
One might wonder, is an NFL head coach ever really worth that much? That’s a debate that could go on forever. However, one thing is for sure, if there has ever been a head coach who could make the argument they are worth a king’s ransom, it would be Belichick.
The question for the Patriots organization, their fans, and the coach is how much longer will Belichick stay on the sidelines. He’s 68 years old and while he has coached the Patriots for 20 years, he’s been coaching football since 1975 when he was a special assistant for the Baltimore Colts. Only two coaches in NFL history have ever coached into their 70s, and that’s Buffalo Bills legend Marv Levy, and the Chicago Bears icon George Halas.
From the looks of things, Belichick looks primed to join that group.
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