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Ranking 2022 NFL Head Coaches

AllLions provides its NFL head coach rankings heading into the 2022 season.

A good coach can bring a talented team to the next level.

Throughout the NFL, coaching has time and time again proven to be a deal-breaker. As a result, organizations tie their fates to each coach they hire.

Here’s a ranking of each head coach in the NFL currently, with notes on their standing heading into 2022. 

32.) Matt Eberflus, Chicago Bears

A first-year head coach, the defensive-minded Eberflus will have plenty to prove as head coach of the rebuilding Bears. How he handles the development of quarterback Justin Fields will define his early years with the organization.

31.) Mike McDaniel, Miami Dolphins

McDaniel was able to find success operating the offense of the San Francisco 49ers, unlocking Deebo Samuel and ultimately landing this new position. He’s got Tyreek Hill to work with, but much like Eberflus, his future will be decided by his quarterback, Tua Tagovailoa. 

30.) Kevin O’Connell, Minnesota Vikings

While Eberflus and McDaniel have young quarterbacks, O’Connell begins his first head coaching assignment with a veteran in Kirk Cousins. He’s coming off a Super Bowl as the Los Angeles Rams’ offensive coordinator, but must now find a way to best utilize Cousins and company.

29.) Brian Daboll, New York Giants

After a successful run piloting the Buffalo Bills’ offense, Daboll takes over the Giants. He’ll need to make a decision on Daniel Jones, who just had his fifth-year option declined. Daboll’s first head-coaching experience will be a rebuild that could take significant time.

28.) Nathaniel Hackett, Denver Broncos

Hackett has the best situation of any first-year coach. With Russell Wilson now leading the offense and talent at all skill positions, he’ll have high expectations from the start. The former Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator could have a very good first year.

27.) Dennis Allen, New Orleans Saints

Allen steps in as the leader of the Saints, after the retirement of Sean Payton. There’s continuity here, as he was the team’s defensive coordinator and even won a game filling in for Payton last season when he was out sick. This connection should create easy buy-in from the players, and could lead to a good first season.

26.) Matt Rhule, Carolina Panthers

Rhule is firmly on the hot seat, and was shopped as a candidate for numerous college openings during the offseason. He’s got a situation to figure out when it comes to quarterback, and his leash could be short during the 2022 season.

25.) Arthur Smith, Atlanta Falcons

Smith bid goodbye to franchise mainstay Matt Ryan after his first season, and now he must find the team’s successor at quarterback. Marcus Mariota looks to be the favorite to start, but Smith’s mettle will be tested by how he develops rookie Desmond Ridder.

24.) Josh McDaniels, Las Vegas Raiders

McDaniels flamed out in his first head coaching opportunity with the Broncos, but gets another chance with the Raiders. There’s talent in place here, so McDaniels will be expected to win early and get this franchise back into the playoffs.

23.) Lovie Smith, Houston Texans

Smith had a good run with the Chicago Bears in the 2000s, reaching Super Bowl XLI. However, he finished poorly, and struggled as the head coach of Illinois. He’s back at the top in the pros, but will have a tough time leading a resurgence in Houston with a team short on young stars.

22.) Todd Bowles, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

After Bruce Arians announced his retirement, Bowles gets a second opportunity as an NFL head coach. He struggled leading the New York Jets, but has had a good run as the Buccaneers’ defensive coordinator. Having Tom Brady doesn’t hurt.

21.) Robert Saleh, New York Jets

Saleh was a hot commodity among NFL circles, and landed with the Jets in 2021. He finished his first season 4-13, but has an exciting young quarterback in Zach Wilson and some talent around him. It won’t be easy to rise to the top in a competitive AFC East, but Saleh was a good defensive coordinator with the San Francisco 49ers who could surprise some in time.

20.) Mike McCarthy, Dallas Cowboys

McCarthy is another coach who may be on the hot seat heading into the upcoming season. He got Dallas to the playoffs, but couldn’t get the team past San Francisco in the opening round. He now faces high expectations, with pieces of a contender in place. Will he get the team over the hump?

19.) Ron Rivera, Washington Commanders

Rivera’s fate is likely tied to new quarterback Carson Wentz, who is on his third team in three years. The former No. 2 overall pick is talented, and could still help his team become a winner. The best-case scenario for Rivera is that he finds some of the magic he had with the Panthers and former QB Cam Newton.

18.) Nick Sirianni, Philadelphia Eagles

In his first year with the Eagles, Sirianni led his team to the playoffs. He must decide whether to move forward with Jalen Hurts as the future of the franchise, but there are key players available throughout the roster. If the Cowboys are unable to run away with the division, Sirianni could have his team in contention late in the year.

17.) Dan Campbell, Detroit Lions

Campbell has done a very good job of changing the culture in Detroit. His quips have made him popular among the media, and he’s shown to be open and authentic. Now, he’ll have to live up to the standards he’s setting inside the team’s walls. He’s handled the mindset change, now Campbell must win games.

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16.) Kliff Kingsbury, Arizona Cardinals

Kingsbury has quickly developed a reputation with the Cardinals. Despite having a young star in Kyler Murray piloting an offense full of weapons, the team has fizzled out late in each of the last two years. It’s time for Kingsbury to take the next step and build consistency with this talented roster.

15.) Brandon Staley, Los Angeles Chargers

Justin Herbert has established himself as one of the NFL’s top young quarterbacks in his first two seasons, with Staley helping to build the team around him. After missing out on the playoffs last year, the Chargers have high hopes heading into 2022.

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14.) Frank Reich, Indianapolis Colts

Reich couldn’t finish the job last season, as the Colts were knocked out of the playoffs in the final week of the season, thanks to a brutal loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Matt Ryan now leads the offense, and running back Jonathan Taylor gives the team a bright young star to build around. The Colts will battle the Tennessee Titans for AFC South supremacy.

13.) Kevin Stefanski, Cleveland Browns

Stefanski has done an admirable job turning the Browns from a lowly team into an AFC contender. However, he faces a tough situation, as his newly acquired quarterback Deshaun Watson will likely miss time in 2022. Baker Mayfield is disgruntled, but may be looked to as the starter early in the season.

Stefanski faces a tough test in that aspect, and how he handles it may define his career. On the flip side, his defense is full of stars, and will help the team stay competitive.

12.) Doug Pederson, Jacksonville Jaguars

A Super Bowl winner, Pederson returns to the sideline after a year away in 2021. His experience at the helm of the Philadelphia Eagles may pay dividends with talented second-year passer Trevor Lawrence.

Pederson was the coach who helped Carson Wentz find a near-MVP level early in his career, so there’s optimism that he will do the same for his new young QB. Time will tell, however, as the year away could prove to be an issue.

11.) Zac Taylor, Cincinnati Bengals

After a rocky start to his tenure, Taylor engineered a run to the Super Bowl with the talent he’s amassed. He must show consistency to move up this list, but an appearance in the big game in year three helped his stock immensely.

10.) Mike Vrabel, Tennessee Titans

Vrabel has done an admirable job in getting the Titans to the playoffs two seasons in a row. After a Cinderella run to the AFC title game in 2020, he aided the team in grabbing the top seed in the AFC in 2021. What followed, however, was an upset loss in the divisional round.

The Titans have taken on the physical identity of their coach, a former NFL linebacker. If the team can get better play from its quarterback, it may be dangerous late in the year.

9.) Sean McDermott, Buffalo Bills

McDermott has all the necessary ingredients to make a deep run with his team. After falling short in the AFC divisional round, thanks in part to an ill-fated coin flip, the Bills are hungry to get back to the playoffs.

The Bills are the top dog in their division, and possibly the entire AFC. With Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs leading the way, optimism is sky-high in Buffalo.

8.) Pete Carroll, Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks are starting anew in 2022 after trading away Russell Wilson. However, Carroll deserves respect for what he was able to accomplish during his prime. The team made two Super Bowl appearances, winning one, and has made the playoffs in seven of the last nine seasons.

This consistency has earned Carroll a spot this high on the list. However, time may be running out for him to get back to the promised land, as he enters his 17th year as an NFL head coach.

7.) Matt LaFleur, Green Bay Packers

Though he’s produced three straight 13-win seasons to open his career, LaFleur has yet to accomplish the level of playoff success of the other coaches higher on this list. Lucky for him, he’ll have Aaron Rodgers back, as the Packers look to make a deep run in 2022.

6.) Kyle Shanahan, San Francisco

An offensive mastermind, Shanahan has helped the 49ers rise to a consistently competitive level. Even without stellar quarterback play, which frequently defines teams, the 49ers have found a way to be consistently in the race for a title at the end of the year.

San Francisco was solid defensively in 2021, and brings plenty of players back. There’s also Deebo Samuel, who has requested a trade but is a big part of the offense. How Shanahan handles that situation will be key.

5.) John Harbaugh, Baltimore Ravens

Harbaugh has been very consistent during his time with the Ravens. He’s made the playoffs in nine of his 14 seasons, but missed out in 2021. He’s entering a crucial season, as quarterback Lamar Jackson’s contract is set to expire after the season.

The Ravens remain talented, and have yet to go through a traditional rebuild under Harbaugh. As a result, he’s earned respect throughout the league.

4.) Mike Tomlin, Pittsburgh Steelers

Few can say they’ve had the consistent success that Tomlin has had while coaching the Steelers. In fact, the Super Bowl-winning head coach hasn’t had a losing season in 16 seasons at the helm. Tomlin has been great at creating buy-in, and always seems to have his players' backs.

His defense will be fine, but the offense will have to find an identity without longtime signal-caller Ben Roethlisberger. The division has caught up to the Steelers, so this will be a big season for Tomlin.

3.) Sean McVay, Los Angeles Rams

The reigning Super Bowl champion has elevated his status. McVay was always known as a bright offensive mind, but put all the pieces together in 2021 after acquiring Matthew Stafford.

There are plenty of eyes watching as he prepares for his encore. Still young, the 36-year-old could put himself in rare air with good seasons in the upcoming years.

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2.) Andy Reid, Kansas City Chiefs

Reid has always fielded competitive teams, and finally got his Super Bowl ring in 2020. With Patrick Mahomes under center, the Chiefs will always be viewed as a championship contender, thanks to Reid’s schemes.

Losing Tyreek Hill won’t be easy to overcome, but Kansas City still has weapons throughout its offense. The NFL is all about adapting, so Reid must continue to do so as teams adjust to his offense in 2022.

1.) Bill Belichick, New England Patriots

Recognized as the "Goat" in most NFL circles, Belichick gets the top nod, because he has overseen a run that may never be replicated. In his time as head coach, he’s won six Super Bowls, and has dominated his division.

Even without Tom Brady, he found a way into the playoffs last season. If he never gets back to Super Bowl glory, what he’s done is still as unique as it comes in the coaching world.