So what are your criteria for best NFL coach of all time?

Discussion in 'NFL Zone' started by dwmyers, Jul 9, 2013.

  1. dwmyers

    dwmyers Well-Known Member

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    Yes, I'm looking at ESPN's list and I find no justification for it, other than "popularity contest" and "look how many ex Bill Walsh employees ESPN has hired."

    And in all honesty I can't come up with a best criteria for BOAT HC. I can think of some, and none are entirely fair.

    Short careers lend themselves to an illusion of invincibility. These guys have, usually, 2-3 NFL championships, a very high w-l%, maybe 10-12 years in the league.

    If you look at NFL championships, then Halas and Curly Lambeau are on top, with 6. It's arguable that it was harder to put together and keep a team in those days. Lots of things paid better than football and it wasn't until well into the modern era that players could be players year round. Into the 1960s and 1970s, it was common for players to have off season jobs.

    If you look at winning streaks (championship appearances and also wins), then the most amazing in my opinion are the 1950-1957 streak by Paul Brown, the 1960-1967 streak by Vince Lombardi, and the 1970s streak of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Chuck Noll. If you count AAFC games (and understand, many folks think the 1948 team of Paul Brown may have been his strongest ever), then nothing compares to the 1946-1957 run of Brown.

    If you look at coaching longevity, then Don Shula and George Halas come to mind, and a guy with a fedora, Tom Landry, didn't embarrass himself in that way either.

    But of course, we deal with a ESPN where Bill Walsh is the best NFL coach ever and Parcells is often their #2. And given that, the recent top 20 NFL coaches was pretty restrained. I still have no taste for illogical lists. I live in a world where a lot of folks think Michael Jordan is the best of all time (a good case can be made for that) and Kobe Bryant is #2. No sense of history (that Jerry West guy and Oscar Robertson guy are fig-a-ments of our imaginations).

    Ok, give me your criteria. For now, I'm thinking BOAT can only be one of these 5 people: Lombardi, Brown, Halas, Lambeau, and Shula. And everyone else, all greats mind you, are behind one of those.


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