First NFL Coach to be Fired Odds and Expert Betting Predictions
It is turning into one of NFL fans and sports betters favorite prop bets each and every year. That’s right, you got it, “which NFL coach will be relieved of his duty first in the 2021/2022 season?”. With the volatility of NFL head coaches being at an all-time high, before each season odds are released for the first coach to be fired heading in the upcoming season. Over the past five seasons, an average of 2.2 head coaches have been fired per year, making this prop bet all the more exciting. Naturally, there is a short list of head coaches that go into a season on the ‘hot seat’. Let’s take a look at who makes that list this year.
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Certain situations arise to coaches that lead to added pressure heading into a new year. First, is quarterback controversy; you see it almost every year, bad quarterback play can lead to a head coach getting canned. If not a result of bad play, then it could be a situation where there is a very average veteran competing with a young quarterback, and that young quarterback has a lot more upside but may not be ready at that exact moment. Not playing the right quarterback usually gets blamed on the head coach. From a head coach’s perspective, they are trying to win now for job security and often don’t have time or the window of opportunity to develop that young quarterback. A prime example is in Chicago this year. Andy Dalton will not win your team a Super Bowl. However, will he be more consistent out of the gate then Justin Fields? Probably.
Another key indicator for a coach entering the ‘hot seat’ is a playoff drought for three years or more. There’s only so much time a franchise gives a head coach, then the pressure from the organization and fan base just becomes too much. Results are eventually expected no matter how big your name is in the football world. A prime example of this would be coach Jon Gruden, who in 2018 was given a 10-year contract by the Oakland Raiders. He was brought into the organization to change the culture of a franchise and bring them back to their winning ways. Raiders fans were more excited about this signing then most teams would be from major free agents. After 3 seasons of lackluster results, even the infamous Gruden has hit the ‘hot seat’ coming into 2021.
Lastly, if a head coach enters a hostile franchise that expects results instantly, the leash is usually very short for them. As many of you can guess, an example would be Mike McCarthy in Dallas. Jerry Jones showed a lot of favour to previous head coach Jason Garrett, who lasted nine years with the Cowboys. Garrett produced only three playoff teams and was constantly under the gun from the media. I don’t believe you can expect Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboys to give another head coach that much time to produce results again. Before Garrett, the previous six head coaches lasted an average of 3.6 years, dating back to 1989.
After being in the ‘hot seat’ most of 2020, expect the same for head coach Mike McCarthy as he coaches one of the most demanding franchises and markets in football. Dallas looks to have one of if not the best offense in the NFL this season, if they start the season slow, look for potential replacement Kellen Moore to take over the duties for McCarthy. After their first game against Tampa Bay Buccaneers, the Cowboys play eight straight games against non-playoff teams from 2020. A Healthy Dak Prescott may just be able to keep his job safe.
Vic Fangio is entering into that critical third NFL season with little results to show as the Denver Broncos Head coach. Yes, the great defensive-minded coach had some bad luck with serious injuries to some of his star players like Von Miller and Courtland Sutton. Heading into 2021, the Broncos definitely will be an improved team. However, with an enormous amount of quarterback controversy heading into the season, Fangio’s situation is a perfect storm to be let go before season’s end. That is why he leads all coaches with Mike McCarthy for the first coach to be fired in 2021, and he is my personal favorite pick.
If not in a playoff race by mid-season, you can fully expect Chicago Bears Head Coach to get the boot. The Bears snuck into the playoffs last season, which may have bought Nagy some more time in Chicago. However, is this borrowed time for Nagy and the Bears? After an impressive 12-4 season two years ago, Nagy set the bar high and has had a tough time living up to it. This offseason, the Bears drafted a franchise quarterback in Justin Fields, which is what Nagy has been asking for. Can Nagy develop him quick enough to save his job? Only time will tell. However, as of right now, it looks like Nagy will go with veteran Andy Dalton as the starter. Matt Nagy would be my second favorite option to get fired in 2021 at +850.
Entering his fourth season as head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders, Gruden has yet to produce a playoff team. Gruden and the Raiders have been steadily improving each year, but the franchise could be running out of patience. Gruden’s 10-year contract may be the very thing helping his job security entering 2021, but there is no doubt Gruden has entered the head coaching ‘hot seat’ of the NFL. To Gruden’s defense, he has not been offered much help as far as player personnel goes. Coming into 2018, the Raiders parted ways with defensive player of the year Khalil Mack, which drew a lot of questions around the franchise and their commitment to win. The Raiders do not look improved from last season, so it will be interesting to see if Gruden can get the results to save his job.
Official Odds List
Vic Fangio +750
Mike McCarthy +750
Matt Nagy +850
Jon Gruden +1000
Mike Zimmer +1100
Kliff Kingsbury +1200
Zac Taylor +1200
David Culley +1600
Matt Rhule +1600
Mike Vrabel +1600
Matt LaFleur +2000
Brian Flores +2500
Frank Reich +2500
John Harbaugh +2500
Kyle Shanahan +2500
Pete Carroll +2500
Sean McVay +2500
Sean Payton +2500
Ron Rivera +2800
Dan Campbell +5000
Joe Judge +5000
Arthur Smith +5000
Brandon Staley +5000
Mike Tomlin +5000
Nick Sirianni +5000
Robert Saleh +5000
Urban Meyer +5000
Kevin Stefanski +10000
Sean McDermott +10000
Bill Belichick +25000
Bruce Arians +25000
Andy Reid +50000
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