The 15 Best Coaches to Never Win a Super Bowl
Super Bowl 48
29 NFL head coaches have been victorious in the "biggest game in the history of western civilization."
It's tough to win a Super Bowl. Talented players playing perfectly in all three phases of football and the luck of the bounce will determine a team's success towards the Lombardi Trophy.
Winning the Super Bowl cements a coach's legacy, not just the players', and helps boost the resume towards the Hall of Fame. Some of the greats who donned the headsets have won the Super Bowl.
This fraternity includes the likes of Bill Belichick, Chuck Noll, Bill Walsh, Tom Landry and Vince Lombardi.
This list talks about none of these immortals.
Instead, this list talks about those great head coaches that have not won the Super Bowl. Some of the greatest coaches have failed to win the Super Bowl, either through their own faults or were unfortunate to be around in an era dominated by some of the greatest teams ever assembled.
My criteria for the list of the top 15 coaches to never win a Super Bowl goes as follows:
Every coach on the list had to have at least a three-year span in the Super Bowl era, so George Halas is not in this discussion.
Coaching in the biggest game doesn't automatically earn a top ranking.
Some rankings may surprise you, while some in the coming weeks or years might take their names off this "infamous" list.
With all this being said, here are my top 15 NFL head coaches who have never won the Super Bowl.
15. Jim Mora Sr.
He had five winning seasons in first seven years with the New Orleans Saints, a team that had zero winning seasons in their first 20 years of existence. Mora started the growth of Peyton Manning with the Indianapolis Colts towards a future Hall of Fame career.
Mora was winless in six playoff appearances with the Saints and Colts.
13. Bum Phillips
The Houston Oilers of the late 1970s under Phillips had the misfortune of being in the same division as the Pittsburgh Steelers' dynasty. The team reached consecutive AFC Championship Game appearances in 1978 and 1979, both losses to Pittsburgh.
In 12 seasons as head coach of both the Houston Oilers and New Orleans Saints, Phillips earned an 82-77 record with a 4-3 mark in the postseason.
12. John Fox
John Fox lost Super Bowl 38 to the New England Patriots as the former head coach of the Carolina Panthers, but he has a chance to be off this list with a win in Super Bowl 48.
In 12 seasons coaching the Carolina Panthers and the Denver Broncos, Fox has a 107-85 record with an 8-5 record in the postseason.
10. Chuck Knox
Knox coached 22 seasons for the Los Angeles Rams, Buffalo Bills and the Seattle Seahawks.
Knox's overall record is 186-147-1 with a career 7-11 record in postseason, but he never reached a Super Bowl.
8. Dan Reeves
Reeves reached three Super Bowls in the 1980s with the Denver Broncos but lost all three of those games.
7. Andy Reid
Reid reached four consecutive NFC Championship games from 2001-04 with the Philadelphia Eagles. He reached the big game once and lost to New England in Super Bowl 39.
He turned around a Kansas City Chiefs team that was 2-14 into an 11-5 team, but they blew a 28-point lead in a Wild-Card loss to Indianapolis.
Reid is 141-98-1 in 15 seasons with the Eagles and Chiefs with a 10-10 record in the postseason.
6. Marty Schottenheimer
Schottenheimer has 200 wins and 126 losses to his record but only finished with a 5-13 record in the postseason.
5. Bud Grant
Grant reached four Super Bowls in the 1970s but lost all four.
He finished 158-96-5 in 18 seasons, all with the Minnesota Vikings, and had a 10-12 record in the postseason. Grant was the first head coach to appear in four Super Bowls.
4. George Allen
Allen was 116-47-5 in 12 seasons with the Los Angeles Rams and the Washington Redskins.
He lost Super Bowl seven to the undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins. He had a 2-7 overall record in postseason with both wins coming in the 1972 Super Bowl runner-up finish.
3. Marv Levy
Levy is the only head coach to appear in four consecutive Super Bowls and lost all four from 1990-1993.
Levy's 17-year record as head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills is 143-112 and an 11-8 mark in the postseason, all with Buffalo.
2. Paul Brown
Paul Brown won seven championships, all in the AFC and the NFL before the Super Bowl with the Cleveland Browns.
As coach of the Cincinnati Bengals, Brown took an expansion team to playoffs but never reached a conference championship game from 1968-75. He went 55-56-1 in eight season with the Bengals, but his previous success in Cleveland charts Brown at No. 2 here.
1. Don Coryell
This man created the "Air Coryell" offense that led San Diego to consecutive AFC championship game appearances in 1980 and 1981. He turned the St. Louis Cardinals of the mid 1970s into playoff contenders.
His record was only 3-6 in postseason and 111-83 overall.