Could a former New England Patriot coordinator be recognized as the top coach in the NFL in his first season with a new team?
Las Vegas Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels has favorable odds to take home the NFL Coach of the Year Award.
McDaniels currently is tied for the fourth-best odds for the award at +1800, according to DraftKings Sportsbook. He trails Los Angeles Chargers’ Brandon Staley (+1400), Denver Broncos’ Nathaniel Hackett (+1600) and Miami Dolphins’ Mike McDaniel (+1600).
The long-time Patriots assistant is tied with Detriot Lions head coach Dan Campbell and Buffalo Bills’ Sean McDermott.
As you can assume from the list, the NFL Coach of the Year Award has a misleading title, as it’s typically given to the coach who exceeds expectations to the furthest degree. Bill Belichick, who many would consider the greatest coach of all time, has only taken home the award three times, coming in 2003, 2007 and 2010.
Considering the gauntlet that figures to be the AFC West, McDaniels could be a real threat for the award should he find a way to supplant the five-time defending champion Kansas City Chiefs as the top dog in the division.
There is even plenty of precedent for coaches winning the award without claiming the division. Just two seasons ago, Cleveland Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski won the award while finishing third in the AFC North.
But is it a good bet?
McDaniels is 11-17 as a head coach in the NFL, granted, he is in a much better situation than he was in Denver. He appears to be more poised to take the reins this time around as well.
Having success won’t come easy for McDaniels, though. The Chargers and Broncos are on the brink of being legitimate contenders, and the Chiefs are already there. While McDaniels has a talented roster, he also has to face elite competition.
McDaniels is worth a flier, but it would not be wise to break the bank investing in the Raiders’ newest leader.