Bill Belichick hasn’t hoisted the Lombardi Trophy in almost a decade, but he’s still the man when it comes to NFL head coaches.
ESPN.com polled 30 “league insiders” asking who they thought was the NFL’s best head coach, and the New England Patriots head man landed at the No. 1 spot on the list. Using a tier system, Belichick got the most “first-tier votes” with 28, followed by Seattle’s Pete Carroll (23) and New Orleans’ Sean Payton (22).
“The most important thing to me is the ability to control the offense, the defense and the special teams,” an unnamed general manager explained to ESPN.com. “You can change and you can coach multiple things and you have the ability to teach almost every position group. Then you can lose any coach you want and replace from within because the head coach is the talent. Belichick is the ultimate model of that.”
Belichick’s accomplishments in New England certainly speak for themselves. All he’s done in 14 years with the Patriots is win more than 70 percent of his games and earn playoff berths in 14 of those seasons. He’s also been to five Super Bowls, winning three of those.
“A lot of guys that coach, it’s all about them,” a GM told ESPN.com. “It’s about their scheme. It’s about what they do. That is not it. Bill Belichick is as astute of a person as you would want, but he is a maniacal guy when it comes to preparing his team. They get together and they meet about the team. The offense should know how the defense is played, the defense should know how the offense is played, and it is that notion that builds greatness.”
Belichick was by far the highest-ranked AFC East coach. New York’s Rex Ryan was the second-highest at No. 17, while Buffalo’s Doug Marrone (No. 28) and Miami’s Joe Philbin (No. 29) finished near the bottom of the list.