One year ago, The Sporting News ranked Green Bay Packers head coach Mike McCarthy as the 4th-best at his job in the entire National Football League. Now, given his sometimes predictable playcalling and questionable on-field decisions, some Packers fans might have disagreed with that ranking, but McCarthy was praised as a "great schemer" and for having an "even-keel personality."
In 2013, then, one would think that Big Mac's ability to keep his team together despite another catastrophic season of injuries (made especially worse by Aaron Rodgers' broken collarbone) would be a feather in his cap. After all, he had to cobble together gameplans for three different backup quarterbacks and adjust on the fly frequently when those signal-callers had to be replaced due to injury or ineffectiveness. In doing so, McCarthy helped keep the Packers' ship steady and led them to an 8-7-1 record, a third straight NFC North title, and a very competitive performance in the playoffs against the defending NFC Champion San Francisco 49ers.
So naturally, after what was arguably McCarthy's best coaching job in his tenure with Green Bay, he dropped to 10th in this year's edition of the head coach rankings.
In 2013, only the Harbaugh brothers and Bill Belichick were ranked ahead of McCarthy. This year, he was leapfrogged by six other coaches: Pete Carroll, Tom Coughlin (more on him in a second), Sean Payton, Mike Tomlin, Andy Reid, and John Fox. Two of them were in the Super Bowl last year (which guarantees you a top-10 spot, apparently), Reid helped turn around the Chiefs (with John Dorsey's help) while Payton and Tomlin have fielded consistent winning teams over the past 8 years or so.
I don't really have a huge problem with any of these coaches save for one, which might indicate that McCarthy was overvalued last year. The one that gets me, though, is Coughlin. I know the Packers have had issues with the Giants in recent years, but let's look at the organizations' success in recent years. The Giants have made the playoffs once in the past five years, and somehow Coughlin is ranked third in the league? I don't care if he got lucky and won a Super Bowl during that one year, putting him in the top five is absurd in my opinion.
In any case, McCarthy is unlikely to leave Green Bay any time soon, especially as long as Ted Thompson remains the team's General Manager. Here's hoping that McCarthy vaults back up into the top echelon on the list next season as a result of a Packers Super Bowl win.
Do you think McCarthy is valued fairly at around 10th in the league, or is that too high or too low in your opinion? Let us know in the comments.