One of the most intriguing topics for football fans, analysts and commentators to discuss, following the conclusion of the NFL season, centers on the head coaches facing termination from their respective organizations. These coaches either failed to deliver the promises made to their fan base, lost the confidence of the locker room or both. Regardless of the circumstance, the following three head coaches are on the hot seat. Any more wrong doing, on their part, could result in them standing in the unemployment line in January.
The Los Angeles Rams, under Fisher, underwhelmed on the football field for the past five seasons. The 2016 expectations for the Rams were not high, but fans are beginning to question Jeff’s ability to actually lead Los Angeles to a Superbowl championship. The script reads the same for this Rams organization: a defense-oriented team that cannot consistently move the football down the field, offensively.
Couple that with the controversial selection and benching of 2016 first round selection, Jared Goff, Fisher is treading very dangerous waters. The original premise this season, according to most Ram fans, focused on a young team, with a young quarterback, developing chemistry and cohesion for the future. Los Angeles has not progressed this year; mediocrity continues to be the best word to describe the performance of this franchise.
This is the fifth year of the Jeff Fisher regime; very little hope for a prosperous future exists. The 7-9 record became the standard for his Rams, but they might not be “his” Rams anymore, following the 2016 season.
The Jacksonville Jaguars displayed “paper-potential,” prior to the 2016 season. What does this mean? It means the Jaguars looked good on paper, heading into the campaign. Positive energy existed; fans in Jacksonville had a real reason to believe their team could compete in the AFC South this year.
Those hopes quickly dashed, following another horrendous start to a season. At 2-6, with problems existing on both sides of the ball, head coach Gus Bradley’s job is on the line. Bradley might not be under immense pressure like Jeff Fisher, or the third individual on this list, but his abilities to lead the Jaguars out of AFC purgatory have been called into question.
This writer did not believe Jacksonville was ready for primetime, as early as this season, but it is rather surprising to see this up-and-coming team struggle to find consistency on both sides of the football. Bradley is to blame for the mess in Jacksonville; he appears to be flustered, discombobulated and his sense of direction is obstructed. Once a solid defensive coordinator with the Seattle Seahawks in 2012, he just might not be qualified enough to be a head coach in the National Football League.
This writer will be surprised if Marvin Lewis retained his job, following the 2016 season, to be honest. Sure, the Cincinnati Bengals are technically still in the race to capture the AFC North championship. Their chances of actually pulling it off are now slim at best; coming from someone who actually picked the Bengals to win the north in 2016.
The offense has been productive, but the defense is bothersome against the league’s better quarterbacks. With that being said, there still lies the problem of player’s attitudes on and off the field [mostly on the field]. Lewis created a hyper-energetic environment for his players; it boiled over into an uncontrollable enigma.
Couple that with Cincinnati’s failures to win a playoff game, over their last seven attempts, Marvin Lewis is not making a strong case to keep his job, past 2016. At some point, the Bengals’ front office needs to evaluate whether removing him from the head coaching position is best for the franchise. The Chicago Bears removed Lovie Smith after nine seasons at the helm, and he led the Bears to a Superbowl appearance. If Smith was let go, because he did not meet the mandate, Lewis can be removed also. Marvin knows football, nobody questions that, but he appears to have run his course in Cincinnati.
It is tough to see anyone lose their job, especially a job they love with a burning passion. With that being said, the NFL is a business; a business predicated on winning. These three coaches are not living up to their obligations; they each deserve to be on the hot seat.