NFL coaching rumors: Which job are insiders claiming is the best? More Wild Card preview

NFL executives and coaches share their thoughts about the most appealing head coaching vacancies following Black Monday. Also, take a look at what might be a wild Wild Card Weekend

Five NFL franchises’ trajectory and many lives were changed this week as another Black Monday sent coaching carousel spinning.

Mike Zimmer, Vic Fangio and Matt Nagy were relieved from their roles as head coaches of the Minnesota Vikings and Chicago Bears. John Mara and theJoe Judge was relieved by the New York GiantsAfter two disappointing seasons in the Big Apple, we are now ready to move on.

Those five teams join the Jacksonville Jaguars, and perhaps the Las Vegas Raiders, in search of their next head coach, though Rich Bisaccia just might have done enough to have the “interim” removed from his title after leading the Raiders past the Los Angeles Chargers and into the postseason on Sunday.

In addition to the multi-million-dollar salaries that head coaches receive per season, their families will have to relocate. As well, their assistants and support staff will need to look for work.

What vacancy do you think is most appealing?

“I think the Vikings are the closest to being a playoff team,” former NFL Executive of The Year Jeff Diamond tells FanSided. “One more win this year and they would’ve made the postseason. They had a bunch of close losses, and they also have some offensive stars like Justin Jefferson, Dalvin Cook, and Adam Thielen.”

Zimmer was let go after producing a 72-56-1 record but missing the postseason two of the past three years. There might not be a team across the league that has underachieved more over the past decade than Zimmer’s Vikings.

Minnesota is now looking for a new direction. However, Minnesota is not the only team in their division that’s searching for a head coach.

“I’m not sold on Justin Fields, but that’s also an attractive job,” Diamond says. “But, they have a really good defense, especially with Khalil Mack and Akiem Hicks healthy.

Diamond said that he was skeptical about taking the Jacksonville Jaguars job at the AFC.

“I just don’t trust their owner,” Diamond explained. “Or the organization. But, the one good thing about taking that job is you’d get to coach Trevor Lawrence, who will get better, and is a good organizational building block.”

Which job are the most desirable? FanSided surveyed the opinions of executives, coaches, and scouts about the most appealing vacancy. Each person was allowed to talk freely about the situation.

Below are the answers.

What is the most appealing position for a head coach in the NFL, according to league insiders?

NFL general manager:

“If the Broncos have a plan at quarterback, there’s not a better situation to walk into this offseason.”

NFC coordinator:

“It’s the job with the best quarterback. Everything else is irrelevant. Chicago’s most attractive, because when you look at a situation like Jacksonville, they have Trevor Lawrence, but they need an entire culture change. Chicago still has a bit to go, but is much closer, and Justin Fields has the chance to be great if he can learn to play in the cold.”

NFL Pro Personnel Director:

“The Broncos are probably the best situation. They have a lot of good pieces in defense and good receivers. And they have a young, talented running back. Maybe most importantly, they have a good general manager that I’d think a head coach would want to work with.”

AFC coordinator:

“Either Jacksonville or Miami. Call me crazy, but weather plays a role, and who wouldn’t want to live in either place? For me, it’s the Jaguars, because they have the far more stable quarterback situation.”

NFL Personnel director:

“Miami would be pretty good. Particularly because they already have Tua. She really came down the stretch. But, there’s a lot of uncertainty there whether they are going to make a run at Deshaun Watson. Is that a situation you want to talk into?”

NFL Personnel Executive:

“The Jaguars are a great spot, because you have some really solid young talent, and much lower expectations when it comes to winning right away. Trevor Lawrence is already on the team, as well as the No. 1 pick in this year’s draft, too.”

How each Wild Card weekend underdog can win the upset

As the NFL Playoffs start this weekend, the Vince Lombardi Trophy quest enters the home stretch.

NFL Wild Card weekend will include two games on Saturday, three on Sunday and a Monday Night Football match on ESPN.

Get ready to get up.

This weekend could also be the most chaotic in postseason chaos. According to ESPN, the underdogs were 6-2 last Wild Card weekend.

So, what is the biggest key for each of this weekend’s underdogs to pull off an upset and take one step closer to Super Bowl Sunday?

Here’s a look,WynnBET offers all odds:

Las Vegas Raiders (+5.5) at Cincinnati Bengals – Sat., 4:30 p.m. ET

The Bengals’ defense has punched above its weight for much of the season, but at times has been vulnerable against the pass, and the big play in the vertical passing game. Cincinnati enters allowing 248 passing yards per game.

Meanwhile, the Raiders are 6-0 in games Derek Carr passes for more than 300 passing yards, and just 4-7 when he doesn’t. Cincinnati may be on high alert in the jungle if Carr reaches 300 passing yards.

New England Patriots (+4.5) at Buffalo Bills – Sat., 8:15 p.m. ET

This game is likely to be the most important of the weekend. It features the best two teams that are most suited to making a run at the AFC Championship Game. If New England is going to have any chance of beating the Bills for the second time in three meetings this year, the Patriots are going to have to limit Josh Allen and Buffalo’s offense’s explosive plays.

This season Only 14 teams have experienced more explosive plays (plays that go for 10 yards or more rushing or 20 yards or more passing) than the Bills’ 15. For the Patriots to have a chance, they’ll need to limit those.

Philadelphia Eagles (+8.5) at Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Sun., 1 p.m. ET

No team has been able to run the ball more efficiently than the Eagles. They averaged 159.7 yards per game in rushing this season, which was 10 yards more than second-leading offense, the Indianapolis Colts.

Philadelphia faces a problem: To beat Tom Brady and The Buccaneers, they need to reduce the game. Tampa Bay is the league’s third-stiffest rushing defense, allowing only 92.7 yards. To move on, the Eagles will need to rush for 200 yards and dominate possession time.

San Francisco 49ers at (+3) Dallas Cowboys – Sun., 4:30 p.m. ET

There might not be a tougher out this round than the Dallas Cowboys, especially with how dominant Dallas’ defense has been all season and how explosive Dak Prescott and Co. are on offense. But, according to one NFL head coach whose team beat the Cowboys earlier this season, the biggest key for San Francisco is to limit Dallas’ Yards after the catch.

Dallas is ninth in the league with averaging 129 YAC/game as it enters Sunday. San Francisco’s cornerbacks; Emmanuel Moseley and K’Waun Williams can’t afford missed tackles on Sunday, or to let Amari Cooper or CeeDee Lamb get behind them.

Pittsburgh Steelers at (+13) Kansas City Chiefs – Sun., 8:15 p.m. ET

Steelers will need to create turnovers. In Kansas City’s five losses this season, the Chiefs turned the ball over 13 times. The Chiefs are entering the playoffs playing their best football and looking like one of the most dominant teams in the league. Again.

Steelers need to play a perfect match, make as many mistakes as possible and score as many takeaways as possible to be able to win. Although it sounds impossible, Kansas City has been the victim of such theft multiple times since 2021.

Arizona Cardinals at (+4) Los Angeles Rams – Mon., 8:15 p.m. ET

The Cardinals will need to continue to pressure Matthew Stafford in order to have any chance. Stafford looked hobbled late in Sunday’s 27-24 overtime loss to the San Francisco 49ers. Stafford was intercepted by the Niners twice and sacked five more times by the Niners.

Arizona is going to need to have a similarly dominant performance from their front-seven, to neutralize the impacts of Odell Beckham Jr., Cooper Kupp and Tyler Higbee, among others, in the Rams’ passing game.

Podcast

Quotable

“The fans in New York are fed up. It’s time for the Giants to reach outside of the norm and stop being as conservative as they’ve been in the past. The NFL is changing. They’ve got to change with it.” – Michael Strahan on FOX

Officially, Dave Gettleman has retired New York Giants This week’s general manager was Judge, with Judge having his key card revoked. It seems that John Mara and the company are finally adapting to a new NFL landscape.

According to [Update News]’s Dan DugganMara isn’t asking for the opinion of Ernie Accorsi, former New York Giants Super Bowl winner general manager.

Accorsi was instrumental in 2017, with Dave Gettleman crediting Accorsi’s endorsement as key to him landing the job.

Some names to already be linked to the Giants have been Tennessee Titans Director of Player Personnel Monti Ossenfort, and Vice President of Personnel, Ryan Cowden along with Kansas City Chiefs’ executive director of player personnel, Ryan Poles, Cardinals VP of player personnel Quentin Harris, among others.

Mara is at the very least casting a broad net for outside candidates. This is a welcome move in the right direction for a franchise which has rarely ventured beyond its own sphere of influence over many decades.

Last thought

John Madden’s legacy has loomed large over the National Football League, since the coaching and broadcasting legend passed away on Dec. 28, and as NFL Wild Card weekend kicks off this weekend, there will be one more serendipitous reminder of his impact.

Sunday afternoon, at 4:30 p.m. ET, the NFC Wild Card game between the San Francisco 49ers and Dallas Cowboys will kickoff on CBS, despite the fact that FOX has held the rights to the NFC since Madden and Pat Summerall called CBS’ final NFL game on Jan. 24, 1994.

It was the NFC Championship Game at Texas Stadium between the San Francisco 49ers and the Dallas Cowboys.

Madden and Summerall became icons during their 13-year partnership at CBS, forging an on-air chemistry that elevated whatever game they were calling into an event that couldn’t be missed. There’s a reason FOX initally paid Madden $30.4 million to be the network’s first showcase analyst, and ensured Summerall joined him at the fledgling network.

You knew that you were entering the most important game of the weekend when the Madden Cruiser pulled up outside your stadium.

With the possible exception of ESPN’s College GameDay, there isn’t a marker in sports that raises the profile of a game in the way Madden and Summerall’s presence in the booth did, for decades.

CBS is undoubtedly hoping for a much closer game on Sunday afternoon than the Cowboys’ 38-21 blowout to send Dallas to Super Bowl XXVII, nearly 28 years ago to the day.

Despite the outcome being lopsided, Madden & Summerall rose to it.

“To stay with a blowout game with the kind of attention they did under the circumstances, I think will be one of the legendary performances of all time,” Rick Gentile was a former CBS Sports Senior Vice-President. The Washington PostThe next day.

Much has been written in recent weeks about Madden’s impact on the sport of football, and there might not be a singular figure who has done more to advance the popularity of the game from his Super Bowl winning coaching career to pioneering broadcasting style, and of course the lasting popularity of EA Sports’ Madden video game franchise.

CBS has an opportunity Sunday afternoon to remind viewers how important Madden/Summerall were as announcers for decades.