The 10 Longest Lasting NFL Head Coaches
The job of an NFL head coach is fraught with anxiety and little, if any job security. You’re rewarded if the team does well, but you’re the first to fall if the team loses a step. There are few professions that have an entire calendar day devoted exclusively to the firing of one position, but the NFL’s Black Monday — the first Monday after the final week of the regular season — is so widely known and anticipated as the day the coach gets canned that the New York Jets made headlines by leaking the fact that they weren’t going to fire head coach Rex Ryan.
Of the 473 head coaches in NFL history, just over 50 have lasted for more than 10 seasons. John Madden didn’t do it. Vince Lombardi didn’t do it. Guy Chamberlain, the winningest coach of all time (78.4 percent winning percentage) only coached for 6 years. It’s a demanding, stressful gig that burns most coaches out very quickly, even if they’re leading teams to victory.
The ten longest lasting NFL head coaches don’t feature some of the expected names. Bill Bellichick’s not here. Neither is Mike Shanahan, Jeff Fischer, or Tom Coughlin. For those few coaches who can make the job work, they lock in for a long time. A really, really, long time.