06 February 2012

Examining Tom Coughlin's Hall of Fame Case

Two major questions. Is that the happiest that Tom Coughlin has ever looked in his life? And is he a Hall of Famer? Let us ponder his case to be enshrined in Canton.

Without question is Coughlin's case bolstered by the Giants' win yesterday in Super Bowl XLVI. That gives him now two Super Bowl championships as well as being the most successful expansion team head coach in modern history (Super Bowl era).

The title gives him more Super Bowl championships than Hall of Famers George Allen, Bud Grant, Marv Levy, John Madden and Hank Stram. He also has more conference championships than both Allen and Madden. But he would have the lowest winning percentage of any head coach in the modern era in the Hall of Fame.

So let's compare his record with that of Bill Parcells, who is soon to be a Hall of Famer himself although he did not get in in his first time on the ballot this year. They have similar records in New York (Parcells: 77-49-1, two rings; Coughlin: 74-54, two rings) and Coughlin has a higher career winning percentage. Of course Parcells is a lock for the impressive work he did everywhere, not just as a coach but as a personnel guy as well, and he left every situation better off than where he entered it. 

I think that Coughlin has a solid shot at the Hall of Fame but there may be some folks thinking that Tom Flores, who has two Super Bowl rings of his own and is the only former head coach with at least two rings that is not in or soon to be in. It takes a while for head coaches to get in, unless they have three rings or more which if Coughlin gets one he is a lock. Allen retired in 1977, didn't get in until 2002. Grant retired in 1985, did not get in until 1994. Levy retired in 1997, did not get in until 2001 (ok, not the best example here). Madden retired in 1978, did not get in until 2006. Stram retired in 1977 and did not make the Hall until 2003.

If you put a gun to my head, I'd say Coughlin will get in. But with his current resume, it will take a while. 

No comments:

Post a Comment