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Black NFL Coaches Survive Black Monday’s Carousel

The NFL coaching carousel is in full effect and in a bizarre twist of events it seems as if most African-American head coaches have survived the gauntlet.

The NFL coaching carousel is in full effect and in a bizarre twist of events it seems as if most African-American head coaches have survived the gauntlet. As Black Monday turned to Tuesday and the inevitable firing or retiring of Teflon Marvin Lewis turned into a two-year contract extension, remarkably Jim Caldwell was the only Black head coach that had lost his job. And not for nothing, Caldwell is the only African-American head coach among the ones on the hot seat that had a winning season at 9-7. 

ChuckModi on Twitter

Of 17 black head coaches in NFL history who have coached at least 1 full season 23.5% (4) fired from winning teams. Of 174 white coaches since 1978, only 6.9% (12) were fired from winning team. GREAT research by @wagesofwins puts Jim Caldwell in context https://t.co/fW6vFZK05g

The weird, but obviously loyal relationship between Cincinnati Bengals ownership and Lewis has resulted in a 15-year run that will continue at least until 2019, whether Stephen A. Smith and other haters of his Lewis’ failures like it or not. 

Smith went as far as to say on First Take this morning that Marvin Lewis was “Taking Black folks back” with his tenure in Cincinnati and accuses Bengals ownership of “not giving a damn,” about the fans. 


 A few weeks ago, the quick trigger sports news cycle had Lewis giving up the head coaching reigns at the end of the season, pursuing a head coaching job with another squad or moving into the front office. 


Now, the guy we told you was Straight-Up Teflon back in 2012 is still doing his thing. 

The Shadow League on Twitter

He has had struggles in the playoffs throughout his Bengals career, but Marvin Lewis will continue to be a legend at the bank: https://t.co/BSiiXMiX84

Surviving The Hot Seat


Jimmy Haslam has reiterated that Hue Jackson will be retained for 2018. Despite winning just 1 of 32 games in his two seasons as Browns HC, Jackson did not lose his job and will get another chance to turn this downtrodden franchise around. Good luck with that. 

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Vance Joseph had a rough rookie season as the Denver Broncos tumbled to the bottom of the AFC West standings for the first time since 2010 with a 5-11 record. After pondering terminating Joseph, who was considered one of the young coaching stars when he got the gig last year, it appears Broncos shot-caller John Elway has decided to let the rookie dig himself out of this hole. The window to be axed is still open until Elway gives the public affirmation, but its looking good for Joseph. Denver believes in his potential and have decided not to crush his coaching spirits. The Broncos offense will have to improve in 2018-19 so this years draft will be crucial and they have to find a quarterback that Joseph can hang his career on.  

Ian Rapoport on Twitter

From @gmfb: What’s next for #Broncos coach Vance Joseph, who will meet with GM John Elway today to map out 2018. Players have been outspoken about their belief in Joseph returning, and it’s heading that way. No final word yet. https://t.co/d8xEH6wmPn

Safe And Sound

Todd Bowles received a two-year contract extension on Friday and he deserves it. The Jets were picked to be a 3-win team before the season began but Bowles coached his ass off and despite a 5-11 record the players responded for the most part. 

SportsNet New York on Twitter

Todd Bowles on his contract extension from the Jets and the plan going forward https://t.co/Ayy0ezonfK

Like many losing NFL teams, Bowles needs to find a QB in this year’s draft. Gang Green’s ability to acquire a star signal caller will ultimately determine Bowles’ fate. 


Chargers Head Coach Anthony Lynn had a promising rookie season and his job stability is Gucci at this point. Under Lynns leadership the Chargers finished with a winning record (9-7) for the first time since 2014. The prevailing thought in San Diego is that Lynn is building a contender, but with future HOF QB Philip Rivers entering the twilight of his career he doesnt have much time to do it. Lynns relationship with the players is what has driven his success. 


NICK HAMILTON on Twitter

Chargers WR Tyrell Williams on Anthony Lynn as first year HC https://t.co/GtuomlPBuT

NICK HAMILTON on Twitter

Chargers Tre Boston on the impact of HC Anthony Lynn this season https://t.co/lYTSvFy1VP

Mike Tomlins job security is never in question and the Super Bowl-winning coach is getting his Pittsburgh Steelers ready for another inevitable playoff collision with the Patriots for a shot at the Super Bowl. Thats the bad news. The good news is that Antonio Brown is expected to be healthy and ready for Pittsburghs Divisional Round game on January 14th. 

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Future Of The Funk


As far as potential African-American candidates to fill one of the six NFL head coaching vacancies, Carolina Panthers defensive coordinator Steve Wilks is the Vance Joseph of this season.  The superstar black coaching candidate. 

Winston-SalemJournal on Twitter

App Trail: App State grad Steve Wilks in mix for #NFL head coaching jobs https://t.co/RbpK7EE7sg

In his first season as the Panthers defensive coordinator, Wilks unit finished the regular season ranked third in the NFL rushing defense (88.1 yards per game), No. 3 in sacks (50), seventh in total defense (317.1) and No. 18 in passing defense (229 yards per game).

Wilks confirmed Monday afternoon he had received interview requests from the Indianapolis Colts, the Detroit Lions and the New York Giants. Multiple reports also surfaced that Wilks had been officially requested by the Chicago Bears, who fired former Panthers coach John Fox following a lackluster season.

Detroit Lions DC, Teryl Austin continues to be a hot candidate. Austins name has been backed by The Fritz Pollard Alliance, which works with the league on diversity hiring practices and recommendations racial minority candidates to be considered for coaching positions,  for years now.  

Dave Birkett on Twitter

Lions DC Teryl Austin is one of top 3 coaching candidates Fritz Pollard Alliance will submit to NFL teams this winter http://t.co/GydrGa8Yg5

The prevailing narrative is that it is his time to shine. 

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Austins defensive scheme is designed to combat today’s offenses and he has an incomparable track record with developing defensive backs. Hes an All-Pro quarterbacks worst nightmare as a coordinator. 

Tom Pelissero on Twitter

Head coaching candidates recommended by the Fritz Pollard Alliance: #Lions DC Teryl Austin, #Vikings DC George Edwards, #Panthers DC Steve Wilks, #Titans OC Terry Robiskie. This list is distributed to teams each year. https://t.co/bSX5oarpYT

Seattle Seahawks DC Kris Richard and Arizona Cardinals OC Harold Goodwin will get some interviews as well. As of today there are six African-American head coaches out of the 32 NFL teams and one Hispanic HC. All things considered, it could have been worse. Lets hope this is indicative of a future where African-American head coaches are given the time to actually develop a team and a culture within an organization instead of getting a quicker hoolk than their white counterparts. 

In 2018…so far, so good.