Top NFL Coaches of All Time

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The National Football League has seen some great coaches in it’s 90-plus year history. The league was formed in 1920, and the coach of one of it’s original franchises, George Halas of the Decatur Staleys, purchased the team in 1921, relocated the team to Chicago and renamed them the Chicago Bears in 1922. The team won the league championship in 1921, and was easily the dominant team during the early years of the league. For the next 40 years, Halas was the guiding force behind the team, leading them to six championships, the last in 1963. His all-time record, 324-151-31, ranks second for most victories.

The winningest all-time coach is Don Shula (347-173-6) who won two championships with the Miami Dolphins, and his 1972 team remains the only NFL team to complete an entire season with an undefeated record. Shula also holds the record for the most Super Bowl appearances by a coach with six. The league’s all-time winningest coach by percentage (.740) is the legendary Vince Lombardi, after whom the trophy awarded to the Super Bowl-winning team is named. Lombardi led the Green Bay Packers to the first two Super Bowl titles, and is considered one of the greatest motivators in NFL history. Chuck Noll of the Pittsburgh Steelers won four Super Bowl titles, the most of any coach. Noll’s prowess was on the defensive side of the ball, credited with developing the famed “Steel Curtain” defense of the late 1970’s. Three coaches, Bill Belichick, Joe Gibbs and Bill Walsh, each have three Super Bowl titles. Belichick is still active (New England), and is generally considered the best coach currently in the league. Gibbs led the Washington Redskins to three Super Bowl titles under three different quarterbacks. Walsh, the genius behind the potent West Coast offense, was considered perhaps the most innovative offensive coach of all time.

There are currently 22 coaches who’ve been elected to the NFL Hall of Fame, among them such legendary figures as George Allen, Paul Brown, Al Davis, Bud Grant, Tom Landry, John Madden, and Hank Stram. These coaches have a combined eight Super Bowl appearances among them, with four championships.

Retired coaches who probably will soon be enshrined into the Hall of Fame are such illustrious names as Tony Dungy, Bill Cowher and Dick Vermeil, each of whom led their teams to at least one Super Bowl championship.

Among the current crop of NFL coaches, several have shown enormous potential to one day be included in the conversation of the “best” coaches of all-time. Besides Belichick, they include Mike Tomlin of Pittsburgh, Lovie Smith of Chicago, Andy Reid of Philadelphia and Tom Coughlin of the New York Giants. Tomlin became the toungest head coach to win a Super Bowl in 2009.

write by Selina

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