This week, it’s head coach Rex Ryan‘s turn to feel the heat.
In a small sample size of 103 NFL players among 27 teams, (roughly 6% of active players) Ryan was voted the most overrated coach in the NFL in a poll by The Sporting News, getting 35 total votes.
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick finished second in the voting with 16 votes, which is kind of head-scratching. Ryan and Belichick have combined to win 6 playoff games in the last three seasons, after all.
Presumably, the two rival AFC East coaches are being penalized for their failure to win a Super Bowl in that span.
It’s possible the poll had an east coast bias to it, as two NFC East coaches finished just behind Ryan and Belichick.
Is it a case of small sample size with very little validity? Perhaps so. Of the top four vote-getters, only Belichick can say without a shadow of a doubt that his job is 100% safe. Ryan’s seat isn’t relatively warm either.
Nevertheless, small sample or not, it’s a stark contrast to the “players coach” reputation that Ryan had been successfully building up during his first two seasons in New York.
At the end of the day, coaches need to put their teams in a position to win games. Actions speak louder than words.