Every head coach has to start somewhere, whether they started off as a defensive or offensive coordinator or even a college coach, they have to have at least some experience working on the sidelines of a professional team. But the problem with hiring a coordinator has a head coach is that the organization/media/fans expect them to be successful right off the bat. The new hires are not being given a little bit of time to grow into their positions.
Why do they need the time? Shouldn’t they already know how to be an effective/winning head coach? Being a head coach is completely different from being an offensive/defensive coordinator. As a coordinator, they are only worried about their guys and that’s all they need to do. They only need to focus on what happens on the field and during practice.
As head coach, they have to interact with every player on the team. They have to have talks with players on the team that aren’t playing well and those that are having issues off the field. On game day, the head coach has a lot to focus on. They need to be alert and make sure that they’re running the right plays and change the play on the fly for the situation.
It’s this drastic change from being a coordinator to a head coach that requires a little bit of time to adjust and grow in the position. It used to be that when a team hired a new coach, they were given three years to adjust to the position and change the team around. But now teams want instant gratification, they want a deep playoff run a coach”s first season, which is completely unrealistic. Even the coaches that have head coaching experience would not be able to take a team all the way to the Super Bowl, unless they have the best roster position (and if the team had a Super Bowl quality roster the team wouldn’t have needed a new coach).
As teams hire former coordinators as their new head coaches, let’s all agree to give them some time to adjust to their new position, time to get to know their players, and gel with the management that are bringing in the players. Three years might be asking a lot, but it was a system that usually worked. Remember they’re going from focusing on one part of the game to the whole thing, they need some leeway.