Another Week 17 has come and gone, and with it, a plethora of coaching vacancies have been created. It’s impossible to say which team will have the quickest turnaround next season, but can we predict it? Well, we can sure try. Here are the top available head coaching jobs from around the league.
1. Denver Broncos
Gary Kubiak’s resignation comes as a bit of a surprise for a team that won the Super Bowl last year, then finished 9-7 this year and narrowly missed the playoffs. One thing we can be certain about for this role? It’s now the most sought after position in the NFL. Denver’s defense is still the league’s strongest—if not for a few unlucky outcomes the team could have easily snagged a 5th or 6th seed in the AFC playoffs. Their only major question mark is Trevor Siemian at quarterback.
2. San Diego Chargers
Some would say that the San Diego (or Los Angeles) Chargers’ job is not to be desired. Mostly because of that sentence. Where will the Chargers play next year? It’s up in the air. However, from a pure football standpoint, the team that went 5-11 isn’t THAT far away from turning things around. They still have a pretty decent quarterback in Philip Rivers, Joey Bosa is a leading candidate for rookie of the year, and they have a talented young tight end in Hunter Henry.
3. Buffalo Bills
Rex Ryan’s tenure didn’t last very long, but the Buffalo Bills weren’t ready to wait. They had a decent season, finishing 7-9 this year and could have finished even stronger if not in the same division as the Patriots and Dolphins. There are some serious question marks regarding Tyrod Taylor at quarterback, but they have one of the best runningbacks in the league at LeSean McCoy.
4. Jacksonville Jaguars
One commentator called them the best 2-win team in NFL history. Not sure if that’s the greatest backhanded compliment of all-time, but it might be true. The Jags could have been better but they lost tons of close games, like many teams. They haven’t had a winning season in 10 years, and probably won’t for a few more. But they are also one of the youngest teams in the league with a solid quarterback in Blake Bortles. There’s also talk about moving to London in the near future.
5. Los Angeles Rams
Their first season in Los Angeles was pretty rough. With the worst offense in the league, there’s a lot of work to be done for next season. Having Jared Goff could still be a huge luxury—he had a few shining moments, but the amount of draft picks they lost to select him may cost the Rams again next season. Todd Gurley’s disappointing year will hopefully be forgotten next season as well.
6. San Francisco 49ers
Where to begin? The 49ers have many, many holes to fill this offseason. Quarterback, defense, and wide receivers are three places to start, but at least they have a good runningback in Carlos Hyde. Unfortunately, the 2017 draft class is without a marquee quarterback. Their only hope is to have an out-of-nowhere candidate emerge like a Dak Prescott.
The NFL coaching carousel is ongoing, but at least one thing is guaranteed—even when they get fired, these head coaches earn a ton of money.
Here are some prospective head coach candidates:
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) December 27, 2016