Season 2013 –Week 16 : Final Predictions

After an eventful last couple of weeks, we’re now starting to hear louder rumors of coaches who are on the Hot Seat, including Jim Schwartz and Jason Garrett if their teams miss the playoffs. Every year there are surprises – both from the fired side and for those not fired. Lovie Smith went 10-6 and Marty Shottenheimer went 14-2 the year they were fired. Even first year coaches can be fired, although that is the exception.

Also, the frenzy seems to alternate years. With 8 new head coaches last offseason, they will likely be less this year. Then again, the stakes keep getting raised, so maybe that’s no longer true either.

 Here are my final predictions for the coaching carousel.

Gone:

Gary Kubiak (Houston) – Head Coach Gary Kubiak was fired after the Texans’ week 14 Thursday night game.  Although, McNair has proclaimed that the General Manager Rick Smith is safe, I feel that he is more of the problem that the coach. Look at the star players that have been traded or released – Mario , DeMeco Ryans, etc. No attempt to get a QB better than Matt Schaub. It was so bad that Ed Reed called them out about it earlier this year (and was subsequently released). Hopefully, they won’t make the obvious mistake of hiring interim HC Wade Phillips for their next permanent Head Coach.

Jim Schwartz (Detroit) – Jim Schwartz came into a very bad situation, taking over after the Matt Millen, General Manager experiment ended with a 0-16 season. Schwartz is now finishing up his 5th year as head coach of the Lions. And while he did an exceptional job at turning around a team that went 0-16 the year before he came, they appear to be stuck in neutral. They play like a very undisciplined team – which mirrors Schwartz himself. They had both the Chicago Bears and the Green Bay Packers without their starting QB’s for extended periods this year, but have still not been able to take the division. He is almost certainly done in Detroit. There is some discussion about the GM also being fired, but it seems that he has done a good job of assembling the talent.

Leslie Frazier (Minnesota) – The Vikings have been much better over the last month with Matt Cassell playing QB. This has been the case all season, even though the always return to Christian Ponder when he’s healthy. It’s hard to say what the exact dynamics of the situation are, but it looks to me like the GM Rick Speilman is mandating that the coach play his high draft pick QB instead of the one that gives them the best chance to win. Couple this with his disastrous pick-up of Josh Freeman and immediately playing him and it looks like Speilman needs to be the one being fired. Unfortunately, he has the ability to fire the coach. This doesn’t bode well for Frazier, who may not have earned a longer tenure anyway. With the Vikings moving into a new stadium next year, something needs to change.

Mike Munchak (Tennessee) – The new ownership was willing to give Munchak a year to prove himself. Jake Locker has shown that he is capable when healthy, but hasn’t been healthy enough of the time. I think that they feel that they’ve seen enough.

On The Bubble:

Dennis Allen (Oakland) – GM Reggie McKensie fired the outspoken Hue Jackson even though he had been doing a better job in Oakland than anyone since Jon Gruden. Dennis Allen was hired as the youngest coach in the league (a familiar theme in Oakland) and was not considered a high quality hire. Allen has rewarded McKensie by publicly dissing his highly paid free agent QB Matt Flynn (forcing McKensie to release him), and generally doing a mediocre job. After a probable second straight 4-12 season, he seems to be the most likely of this group to get canned. Unless Allen can convince them that he will be able to do appreciably better with undrafted free agent Matt McGloin at QB, I don’t see them staying with him.

Rex Ryan (New York Jets) – Rex Ryan has been on the Hot Seat since the end of last year. Remarkably, a lot of NFL watchers have stated that keeping this team competitive with a rookie QB and it’s general lack of talent has been Rex’s best coaching job of his career. Even accounting for the hyperbole, Ryan has done an admirable job of motivating his players. However, Ryan is in a tough spot. After a new GM is appointed, he usually gives the existing coach one year before he’s fired. (See Lovie Smith last year). Owner Woody Johnson has intimated that he’s already made up his mind about Rex. That implies that he’s gone at the end of the season.

Mike Smith (Atlanta) – Mike Smith has done a very good job with the Atlanta Falcons over the last 5 years, getting into the playoffs 4 of those 5 years. However, it wasn’t until last year that they actually won a playoff game. The play of the Falcons this year has been abysmal. This was after they were expected to be a Super Bowl contender. Not only have they been losing, they don’t even seem to be trying in many games. It’s not unusual that one bad season would lead to the coach being fired unless the front office was already disenchanted with him. I don’t know that that is the case in Atlanta, but the magnitude of their collapse this year makes me think that this might be the end for Mike Smith.

Jason Garrett (Dallas) – The Cowboys are a mess, as they have been ever since Jerry Jones fired Jimmy Johnson as his coach. Although Jason Garrett is ostensibly the coach, it was Jones who mandated that Rob Ryan be fired as the Defensive Coordinator and replaced with the 167 year old Monte Kiffin. The result has been a predictably disastrous, as the Dallas D apparently can’t stop anyone (Meanwhile the afore mentioned Ryan has taken the Saints defense from a total disaster after Bounty-Gate to one of the best). Jones also demanded that Garrett be stripped on the play-calling ability and that it be given to Bill Callahan. Many believe that if he doesn’t win this weekend against the Eagles – and thereby miss the playoffs again – he’s outta there. However, Tony Romo’s back surgery may be Garrett’s saving grace. Still, another poor showing may be enough for JJ to pull the plug.

Greg Schiano (Tampa Bay ) – After the Josh Freeman debacle earlier this year, I was convinced that Schiano would be fired. There wasn’t much to change that view as the Bucs went 0-8 before winning a game. They then won 4 of their next 5 against the likes of Buffalo, Miami, Detroit and Atlanta. With blow-out losses to the Panthers and 49’ers, it’s really up in the air if the Glazors will feel that Schiano is the man to groom Mike Glennon and lead the Bucs back to the playoffs (or, at least, respectability).

Likely Safe:

Mike Shanahan (Washington) – Owner Dan Snyder wants to fire Mike Shanahan, but if he does that then he owes him $7 million for next year’s salary in addition to a separation buyout. Snyder was reportedly talking to Shanahan about taking a lesser sum (or preferably none), but Shanny wants the whole deal. [Remember that he already went through all this when Al Davis fired him in Oakland after ~20 games and didn’t pay him.] So Shanahan has decided that he’s going to pull a power play. He’s going to run the team as he sees best rather than acquiesce to whatever Snyder and GM Bruce Allen think he should do even if that includes benching his marquee player. In so doing he’s daring Snyder to fire him. The Endgame is still not settled. Football has been described as a chess match between coaches. Snyder has been caught in a game with a Master Chess player.

Tom Coughlin – Coughlin has won 2 Super Bowls, but consider this:
–            In the last 5 seasons they have missed the playoffs 4 times. The other time they snuck in as the 6th seed and happened to win it.
–            Six seasons ago, they also eked into the playoffs. Just making the playoffs probably would not have been enough to save Coughlin’s job. Only by winning the SB was he able to save his job.
–            The Giants won both their SB’s against the NE Patriots against whom they match up extremely well. [They would never have manhandled the Ravens like they did the Patriots in 2012.]

My point in all this is to minimize the Super Bowl wins in order to allow the Giants to get rid of him. It should also be noted that Coach Coughlin is the oldest head coach in the NFL BY FIVE YEARS. (He’s 67, the next oldest coach is Pete Carroll at 62). A forced retirement would be a way of moving on while allowing Coughlin to save face. However, this is not a likely scenario.

Joe Philbin – With the Dolphins on the cusp of getting the last playoff position in the AFC, Philbin would not seem to be in any trouble. However, the Jonathan Harris has yet to be resolved and, although owner Stephen Ross publically backed Philbin after the story broke, that chapter has not yet closed. Interestingly enough, GM Jeff Ireland – whom most observers wonder how he keeps his job – was not also supported. The ironic part of this is that this past offseason may have been Ireland’s best with impact free agents and draft choices across the board.

Jeff Fisher (Saint Louis) – The Rams are one of the most enigmatic teams in the NFL – you never know what you’re going to get on any given Sunday. Still, Fisher has them playing hard and winning occasionally despite losing starting QB Sam Bradford midway through the season.

Safe:

Mike McCarthy (Green Bay) – Despite losing Aaron Rodgers for ½ the season, the Packers are still playing for the division title in week 17. With an improved defense and bell cow Eddie Lacy at RB, this team looks set for the future if they can keep Rodgers healthy.

Mike Tomlin (Pittsburgh) – Earlier in the year, I was close to putting Tomlin on the Hot Seat. The Thanksgiving Day kick-off return was the tipping point for me. However, it was mostly wishful thinking on my part. With their late season resurgence, even to the point of having a chance at a wild card, he’s not going anywhere.

Ron Rivera (Carolina) – With Ron Rivera’s week 3 epiphany about taking more chances earlier in games, “Riverboat Ron” was born. With an improved Cam Newton under center and 2 rookie NT studs allowing MLB Luke Keuchley to make the kind of plays that have brought him into the DPOY conversation, the Panthers are one win or a New Orleans loss from winning the division.

Marvin Lewis (Cincinnati) – In the playoffs for the 3rd straight year with their first division win since 2009. Marvin Lewis has done a credible job as Head Coach over his tenure in Cincinnati, even when he didn’t have much to work with. Andy Daulton continues to be the most maligned winning QB outside of Dallas.

Sean Payton (New Orleans) – With the hire of Rob Ryan as the new Defensive Coordinator – taking over from the disgraced Greg Williams after the 2011 bounty scandal – Sean Payton has the Saints right back in the thick of things. Although they have lost 3 of their last 4 games and could miss the playoffs if they lose to Tampa on Sunday, Payton is the man in NO.

Jim Harbaugh (San Francisco) – In the playoffs for the 3rd straight year and after a loss to his brother in the Super Bowl last year, Jim Harbaugh would be considered untouchable if he was so prickly. Still safe for the foreseeable future.

Untouchable:

John Harbaugh (Baltimore) – This has probably been the hardest year of John’s head coaching career as the team had a major makeover during the offseason. While all the attention was being paid to the defense, GM Ozzie Newsome has retooled that side admirably. However, we now see how much Matt Birk deserved his 6 Pro Bowls with the Minnesota Vikings. It’s a shame that he wasn’t as appreciated when he was in Baltimore. You don’t play 15 years in this league without being stellar. The Offensive Line has been a shadow of its championship play last year. It will be a point of overwhelming attention this offseason.

John Fox (Denver) – Doubly lucky this year as he survived a scary heart problem and he has Peyton Manning as his QB. However, he’ll need to take some lessons from his successor in Carolina if he wants what he and Payton crave – a Super Bowl ring.

Pete Carroll (Seattle) – I always felt that Carroll was given short shrift in his previous NFL Head Coaching stints. He has really come through for Seattle. I think that he has the same advantage that Jimmy Johnson had coming into the league – he knows the college players intimately and can draft more astutely than most others. Although he’s the second oldest coach in the NFL, I don’t see him retiring for a while.

Bill Belicheck (New England) – What can you say about this guy. Not only is he one of the best coaches of all time, but he continues to be that while handling GM duties. That’s something that most great coaches want, but ultimately ruins them (Mike Holgren, Mike Shanahan, many others). By starting off this season with an inexperienced receiving crew, he was able to coach them up. They won a lot of close games early because of that inexperience, but when Gronkowski came back they took off. Now that Gronk is back on IR, they’re capable just in time for the playoffs.

Rookies:

I don’t see any of the first year coaches getting fired this year. Two of them are in the playoffs and 3 more still have a chance. The others are on such bad teams that they will need multiple years to rebuild (Cleveland, Jacksonville, Buffalo).

 

Summary:
Gone:
Gary Kubiak
Jim Schwartz
Leslie Frazier
Mike Munchak

On the Bubble:
Dennis Allen
Rex Ryan
Mike Smith
Jason Garrett
Greg Schiano

Likely Safe:
Mike Shanahan
Tom Coughlin
Joe Philbin
Jeff Fisher

Safe:
Mike McCarthy
Mike Tomlin
Ron Rivera
Marvin Lewis
Jim Harbaugh
Sean Payton

Untouchable:
John Harbaugh
John Fox
Pete Carroll
Bill Belicheck

Rookies:
(in order of likelihood of being fired)
Rob Chudzinski
Greg Marrone
Gus Bradley
Mike McCoy
Marc Trestman
Bruce Arians
Chuck Pagano
Andy Reid
Chip Kelley

 

2013 Season – Week 5

Things are changing in the Hot Seat as the players are getting more familiar with their coaches systems. Oakland and Arizona in particular are looking much better than they had before. 

Greg Schiano has now gotten his wish with the Bucs releasing Josh Freeman outright. He’s also completely lost his locker room with the way that this has been handled. He better be able to coach up rookie QB Mike Glennon very quickly if he hopes to stay on. If the Glazors are paying any attention, he’s gone.
This follows a familiar pattern with many – but certainly not all – coaches that come up from the college game where they were ultimate masters of their football domains.  Now they have to deal with the players as men and certain megalomaniacal coaches (e.g. Saban, Petrino) can’t deal with that.

Tom Coughlin inches ever closer to forced retirement as the Giants drop to 0-5 in another uncompetitive game against a mediocre opponent.

The 2-3 Texans could easily, nee should, be 0-5.  Methinks time has run out on Gary Kubiak.

The Vikings beat the 0-5 Steelers, but their signing of Josh Freeman shows the desperation settling in after squandering probably the best years of arguably the best running back in NFL history.

The Steelers dropped to 0-5, which is pushing Mike Tomlin towards unemployment. However, the Rooney family has a long history of sticking with a coach through poor seasons if they believe in him. But with the front office mandating offensive schemes that force juggling OC’s that might show that they don’t really believe Tomlin can effectively run his coaching staff by himself.

Chip Kelley is finding out how different the NFL is from college. He seems to be out of his depth in the NFL. Whereas in college you just get better players and solid coaching, the NFL is constantly adapting schemes even between series and he doesn’t seem to be able to answer that.

Dennis Allen looks like he’s stabilized the Raiders. Terrell Pryor is taking a page out of Russell Wilson’s playbook in Seattle and is making it look good. Now lets see what happens after the opponents have a few weeks of tape on him.

Philip Rivers is showing how good a QB coach Mike McCoy is. Whether that translates to the rest of the team is still to be seen.

Bruce Arians is starting to impress in Arizona – even with Carson Palmer as his QB. That says a lot about his coaching ability (just in case anyone – outside of Pittsburgh’s front office – had any doubts).

2013 Season – Week 3

Well, this week, we have four coaches that made strides to separate from their teams by season’s end.

Of the 6 teams with (0-2) records, two of them won – by playing 2 of the other 0-2 teams. So, there’s not too much positive for to say about Cleveland and Carolina winning. But there’s a lot of negativity heading towards Minnesota, NY Giants, and Washington, and a little less so for Buffalo, whose expectations were much lower heading into the season.

We also saw some questionable coaching from SF, Cincinnati, and Tampa Bay. Green Bay had how many turnovers against Cincinnati?

Both Bill Belicheck and John Harbaugh further cemented their status as untouchable with dominating showings against Tampa Bay (meh) and supposed SB darkhorse Houston Texans.

NFC East:
Tom Coughlin, the oldest HC in the league by 5 years must be just begging for retirement. After losing 6 turnovers to Dallas in week 1, and losing to Denver in week 2, the Giants outdid themselves by being shutout 38-0 by a winless Carolina team looking every bit like a 0-3 team.

Washington flopped into Detroit and the Lions team was ready to flop them back out 3 hours later. Whether Shanahan is proving the nay say’ers who say he can’t win without having John Elway (and Terrell Davis) or if he’s demonstrating that not even bringing in SB winning and/or Hall-of-Fame coaches can’t overcome the incompetence of clueless, know-it-all owners (And I’m not excluding you, Jerry Jones from that category.)

We’ll need to keep a watch on Chip Kelly and the Eagles to see if he can avoid the trap of so many college coaches who think that they can just twink their systems a little here and there and that can then stand-up against the schemes developed by the best tacticians in football based on the best athletes in the world.

Jason Garrett has the Cowboys off to a good start. Their new emphasis on creating turnovers had immediate dividends against the NY Giants in week 1.  However, we’ll have to see how they do when the get into the play-offs.

 

NFC South:
Atlanta has been one of the most consistent franchises since Thomas Dimitroff took over and hired Mike Smith as Head Coach. This year seems like it’s going to test them as much as possible with the enormous number of injuries to starters, a resurgent New Orleans, and an overall improved NFC.

Carolina

New Orleans looks like the team they were in 2011 before BountyGate. With Sean Payton back in control and Rob Ryan now handling their defense, they are once again a favorite to make the playoffs.

Greg Schiano came in last year as a rookie coach and brought an enthusiasm and a new style of football that energized the players and caused enough other teams problems for them to finish 7 – 9. That happened even though he was working behind the scenes to under-cut the presumptive leader and starting QB Josh Freeman. Now, they’ve spent a second round pick on Mike Glennon and are apparently grooming him to supplant Freeman who is well-liked in the locker room and a “company man”. This is starting to look like he’s losing, if not already lost, his players respect. If this doesn’t change soon, things are going to get ugly quick and Schiano may not make it through the entire season.

NFC North:
Chicago –Marc Trestman’s new offence is allowing Jay Cutler something that he’s never had before in his tenure at Chicago, the time to actually read the routes and throw the ball.

Detroit – Jim Schwartz continues to pull this team around with the latest huge piece of a

Green Bay – After this weekend’s ugly loss to Cincinnati, and a season opening loss to San Francisco, Cheese heads are going to get restless.

Minnesota – Leslie Frazier is doomed as long as he stays with Christian Ponder as his starting QB (And behind him is who?)

NFC West:
Arizona – Bruce Arians using Carson Palmer to air it out to Larry Fitzgerald

St Louis – Jeff Fisher doesn’t have any excuses now it’s put up or shut up time

San Francisco – How did Colin K go from all-world to bargain-basement leftovers in just 2 weeks?

Seattle – Russell Wilson

AFC East:
Buffalo – Rookie HC (Marrone) and QB (E.J. Manuel

Miami – Ryan Tannehill looking promising.

NE – Untouchable Bill Belicheck showing strength

NY Jets – Ryan showed why he’s such a good coach by beating Buffalo.

AFC North:
The elegies for the Ravens defense will have to be put away once again as they clobbered the Texans

Marvin Lewis’s Cincinnati Bengals won, but in one of the ugliest, sloppiest, sorriest excuses for a football game – 3 fumbles, and an interception by the Bungles, 2 fumbles and 2 interceptions by the Pack. WhooHoo!

Pittsburgh and Minnesota appear to have as their goal to get the Justice Department to come down on the NFL for letting go of 2/3 of their minority Head Coaches.

Cleveland finally did something that showed promise

AFC South:
Houston laid a big cow pie in the middle of M&T Bank stadium,

After a shaky 1-1 start, the Indianapolis Colts went across the country to San Francisco and physically frustrated and manhandled the NFC Champion 49’ers who do not appear to have prepared their new Franchise QB on how to be a new franchise QB. Jim Harbaugh may be on track to be a one-year wonder if he’s not careful. Meanwhile, Chuck Pagano is beginning to show that Indy’s success last year is something that he brought with him and that Bruce Arians’s tenure, as Acting Head Coach wasn’t solely due to his coaching.

Jacksonville: Why do they even try?

Tennessee – The Titans have looked surprisingly good beating two playoff-caliber teams in the Steelers and Chargers and only losing to the Texans in overtime.

AFC West
Andy Reid has much better personnel on the Chiefs than he did over the last couple of years in Philly. And was able to show how much better of a coach he is than any of their recent HC’s Romeo Crennell, …

Payton Manning continues on his quest to personally hand every single balloter for the official greatest QB of all time voting a personally signed Game Ball

Oakland – Better, but still not real good.

San Diego

2013 Season – Week 4

The previous trajectories were reinforced this week.

Tom Coughlin inches ever closer to forced retirement as the Giants drop to 0-4 in another uncompetitive game.

The excrement has hit the fan in Tampa Bay, where Greg Schiano has now, not only benched Josh Freeman, but demoted him to 3rd string and banished him from the sidelines. (He watched the game this week from the team’s press box.) Meanwhile Rookie QB Mike Glennon didn’t do anything to establish himself as they lost to the previously 1-2 Cardinals. He better be able to coach up Glennon if he hopes to stay on. Unless the Glazors aren’t watching, that is, which is possible.

The Steelers dropped to 0-4, which is pushing Mike Tomlin closer to unemployment. Since Tomlin took over from coach Cowher, he won a SuperBowl, made the playoffs for x straight years, but missed the playoffs last year and has been hardly even competitive in most of their games this year. Meanwhile his fired OC took the Indianapolis Colts to the playoffs last year with a rookie QB after the team went 1-15 the previous year. The case could easily be made that he’s doing the all he can with the players that he’s been given. Critics of Todd Haley’s offense might disagree. However, the Rooney family might agree and only make a change at the GM level. They have a long history of sticking with a coach through poor teams. Of course the generations are changing, and the issues with the musical OC’s show that they’re not that sold on Tomlin for the long term.

It will be interesting to see how the Jaguars owner handles his rookie head coach as they dropped to 0-4 and looked like they the best chance of going 0-16 for only the second time ever. (TB went 0-14 when they had 14 game seasons. OK, they went 0-26, before winning their last two games in their second year.) Most coaches that have been fired after 1 year had 1-3 wins.

The Vikings beat the 0-4 Steelers, but after blowing the game against Cleveland last week, Leslie Frazier appears to be on ever shakier ground. The play of Matt Cassell this past week and stronger play from the Browns might ameliorate that somewhat.

Chip Kelley is finding out how different the NFL is from college. That and that Mike Vick is a coach killer. Whether he can right the ship before it sails any further over the edge remains to be seen.

Bruce Arians hasn’t impressed anyone in his short tenure in Arizona, and with Carson Palmer as his QB, that may not be changing anytime soon.

Philip Rivers is showing how good a QB coach Mike McCoy is. Whether that translates to the rest of the team is still to be seen.

Rob Chudzinski (Cleveland)… moving up.

Marc Trestman (Chicago) looking good.

Everyone thought that St Louis was a great chance for Jeff Fisher to really show what a good coach he was. Unfortunately, he has been moving backwards for the last couple weeks.

SF got back on track (by beating the RAMS. Whoopee.) Now let’s see if they can build on that or whether the younger Harbaugh coach will miss Alex Smith tragically??

Regardless of the last minute win over Seattle, time may be running out on Gary Kubiak.

On the other side of the ledger, Andy Reid is showing how good of a coach he can be (and how bad the previous regime’s head coaches were). After losing 3 close games, the Bills finally finished off the Ravens with a win, which allows coach Marrone some breathing room.

Miami (Philbin) has been surprising everyone, with the maturing of Ryan Tannenhill.

Bill Belicheck’s Patriots are starting to get used to playing together and will be getting healthier soon, although the injury to Vince Wolfork is HUGE. This continues to be Belicheck’s most challenging year as NE coach.

No change in status for John Harbaugh, Pete Carroll, John Fox, Jason Garrett, Mike Smith (yet), Schwartz, Payton,

 

Jury’s out: Shanahan, Rex, Marvin Lewis, Rivera, Pagano

2013 Preseason

These analysis are based on what might happen if the proverbial wheels come off and the team tanks in 2013 (kind of like what Oakland did in 2000 under Bill Callahan or what New Orleans did last year). Even SuperBowl winning coaches can get fired in that situation, but if a coach has been good enough for long enough he’s still safe.

Hot Seat

90% New York Jets – Rex Ryan (4)
Rex has one year to show his new GM that he’s the Head Coach he wants going forward. Unfortunately, he doesn’t have the personnel to do it. It would take at least a strong push for the play-offs to give him another year.
85% Carolina – Ron Rivera

75% Dallas – Jason Garrett
How long will Jerry Jones put up with a GM who has shown such incompetence? A long time if it’s himself. My guess is that Jason Garrett gets at least one more year to try to do something with JJ’s team. I’m not sure he’ll be able to.
75% Tennessee – Mike Munchak(2?)
I’m not sure of why Bud Adams had Coach Munchak fire his OC  instead of firing him outright last year, but I don’t see him performing any better this year than he has so far
70% Detroit – Jim Schwartz
I’m not sure how impatient the GM in Detroit is, but if either Matthew Stafford or Calvin Johnson get hurt for any length of time the odds of Schwartz coaching this team next year drop dramatically.
70% Oakland – Dennis Allen(2)
The more things change, the more they stay the same in Oakland. Owner Marc Davis fired previous Head Coach Hue Jackson for demonstrating that he was capable of leading the team without undue influence from the owner. So how long will he hang on to his current lapdog of a HC when they start losing again?

Indianapolis – Chuck Pagano (2*)
Miami – Joe Philbin
Minnesota – Leslie Frazier
Houston – Gary Kubiak
St Louis – Jeff Fisher (2/)
Tampa Bay – Greg Schiano (3?)
Washington – Mike Shanahan (4/)
Seattle – Pete Carroll (3?/)
Denver – John Fox (2/)

Safe:

If any of the following coaches are released, it would be a major shock (almost as much as Marty Schottenheimer being fired after going 14-2 in the regular season.) Still only 2 would have no chance of being fired. For any of the rest, it would take a Bill Callahan type meltdown or another year like the Saints had last year to be fired.
20%
San Francisco – Jim Harbaugh (3)
Can Colin Kaepernick hold up for an entire year. Will other teams be able to neutralize him now that they have  9 (?) games of tape on him? Of all the coaches in this section, Jim Harbaugh has the least tenure and highest risk of a team meltdown.
Cincinnati – Marvin Lewis (15?)
After two straight play-off appearances, No way that Mike Brown fires Lewis after holding on to him for the previous x mostly fruitless years.

Doubtful (10%)
Pittsburgh – Mike Tomlin
2 SuperBowls, including winning in 2007 & 2010
The Steelers have shown real weaknesses over the past couple of years. I think that Ken Wisenhunt’s and Bruce Arians’s brilliant work as OC’s was able to keep this team from showing its wear. But with Arians being dismissed after 2011, and Todd Haley not able to pick up the slack, the Steelers missed the play-offs for only the 2nd (?) time in Tomlin’s tenure. With a lack of talent across the board and their best players banged up (Rothlisberger, Palamalu) or gone, Tomlin will have to show just how good of a HC he is this year. With a Bengal team that has made two straight play-off appearances and a rejuvenated Cleveland Browns squad, the Steelers may have a hard time avoiding the cellar in the AFC North.
New Orleans – Sean Payton
Sean Payton would have an even lower chance of getting fired except for the BountyGate scandal last year. Last year was the sort of year that gets even the best coaches fired. However, Bensen has enough sense to keep going with Payton regardless. Regardless, he has shown himself to be an extremely effective coach and has a SB win. However, another year like 2012 and he may be gone.

Unlikely
New York Giants – Tom Coughlin (?/)
Tom Coughlin lasted 5? years in Jacksonville with more than a little success, but eventually wore out his welcome with his strict discipline. He has reportedly lessened that since his first few tumultuous years in NYC. Regardless, he would have almost certainly been fired after the 200x season, if they hadn’t gone on a tear and won the SB. He has now won 2, but the Giants’ uneven play and frequent lackluster performances might make the change.

Extremely unlikely.
Green Bay – Mike McCarthy
Atlanta – Mike Smith (6)
Mike Smith has a similar trajectory as John Harbaugh, but without the clear success. A disastrous year might cause management to decide that he had gone as far as he could and make a change.

No Chance:
New England – Bill Belicheck (14?/)
3 SB championships in his first 4 years, but only 2 appearances in the 10 years since and the SpyGate scandal. Still, the Patriots are one of the most successful teams year in year out. Although Belicheck might be getting to the point where he wears out his welcome, I don’t think he’s there yet. The only thing that might tip this over the line this year is the Aaron Hernandez situation, but it seems as if Mr. Kraft was at least as responsible for allowing them to draft him and unwisely renegotiating his contract. No chance.
Baltimore – John Harbaugh (6)
5 Playoff appearances in 5 years. Defending SB champs. No chance.

First Year Coaches:
(<25%)in order of likely-hood of being fired after one year.
Cleveland – Chudhinski  (1)
The new owners and front office in Cleveland have a much more aggressive stance to making the Browns winners again. Although there’s no reason to think that this coaching staff won’t be able to get this team pointed in the right direction, it wouldn’t be too much of a surprise if they don’t like what they see after one year and pull the plug on Chuzinski.
Buffalo – Navarro (1)
Jacksonville – Gus Bradley (1)
I would think that the Jags front office know what they have as far as personnel, so even going 0-16 might not get Gus fired. It depends on how much they like his coaching style and if he’s able to develop some of his young talent.
San Diego – Mike McCoy (1)
It’s doubtful that McCoy has the experience or demeanor to lead a NFL franchise at this stage in his career. And after A.J. Smith/Norv Turner turned this team into also-rans, I don’t see him successfully reviving it anytime soon. Nevertheless, Spanos has not shown himself to make quick decisions (or waste money).
Kansas City – Andy Reid (1/)
It would be a major upset if Coach Reid were fired after one year, but with the way the Chiefs have played over the last several years, patience is wearing thin and another year like last year may not be good enough.
Philadelphia – Chip Kelly (1)
Although it wouldn’t be the first (or last) time that a highly regarded college head coach bombed in the NFL, I see Chip Kelly getting more than one year to implement his scheme with the Eagles.
Chicago – Marc Trestman (1)
Lovie Smith probably had no real chance of staying on as head coach 1 year into the tenure of a new GM without a strong play-off run. Trestman comes with several years of NFL experience and as head coach of the CFL champions. He’ll be given more than a year or 2 to get this team performing consistently.
Arizona – Bruce Arians (1)
After successfully getting the Steelers into the playoffs as their Offensive Coordinator for several years, Arians was essentially fired for not running an acceptable style of offense for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Hired as the Offensive Coordinator of the Indianapolis Colts last year, he was unexpectedly elevated to the role of Acting Head Coach when Chuck Pagano was diagnosed with cancer and unable to lead the team. He only took a team with a depleted roster and a rookie QB to a 11-5 record and a spot in the play-offs. How he ended up in Arizona instead of Chicago or San Diego where he would have competed for a spot in the SB is anyone’s guess. P.S. The Bidwell’s don’t like spending money on fired head coaches either (or anyone else, apparently).

Retirements:
Note that occasionally NFL Head Coaches do retire voluntarily. Chances that a head coach will retire:
(25%) Tom Coughlin (67) – At 67, Coughlin is the oldest Head Coach by 5 years. Who knows how much longer he can keep it up. After 2 Super Bowls with the Giants, he doesn’t have much left to prove.
Chuck Pagano (medical) – Here’s hoping that that doesn’t happen.
(10%) John Fox (59) – 3 years into a new coaching gig in Denver, he doesn’t appear to want to give it up anytime soon.
(0%) If Andy Reid (55) didn’t retire after last year (or after his family issues in recent years), he won’t anytime soon.
(0%) Bill Belicheck (61) won’t leave until he goes out in a box.

Fagetaboutit (0%)
Pete Carroll (62) – Finally having success as a NFL Head Coach, even as the 2nd oldest current HC, Carroll won’t be voluntarily retiring anytime soon.
Bruce Arians (60) – First Permanent Head Coaching job after x years as an top notch coordinator.
Marc Trestman (57) – Finally a NFL Head Coaching job after years of paying his dues as a NFL coordinator, college head coach (??), CFL.

Other older Head Coaches:
(10%) Mike Shanahan (60)
(5%) Jeff Fisher (56)
(5%) Marvin Lewis (54)