Top 5 offensive coaches in the NFL

Wednesday, I ranked the top-five defensive coaches in the NFL right now. Today, I rank the top-five offensive coaches. 1. Sean Payton – He’s been the Saints’ head coach for seven seasons. Before that, he was the Giants’ offensive coordinator three seasons. Except for his first year in New York, Payton’s offense has ranked top-ten in yards every season he has coached. The one season his offense didn’t rank top-ten,…

May 22, 2014

What’s a Harbaugh worth?

Here is my Wednesday column on Jim Harbaugh. Under no circumstances should the 49ers give Jim Harbaugh a contract extension this offseason. Let him play out the final two years of his deal. Or let him win a Super Bowl before giving him a raise. Apparently, Harbaugh wants to be the highest-paid head coach in the NFL. Hey, so do I, but I don’t deserve to be. Harbaugh doesn’t deserve…

February 26, 2014

Pre-training-camp playoff and Super Bowl predictions

We have nine more days to kill before training camp starts, so let’s predict which 12 teams will make the playoffs and which team will win the Super Bowl. I’m not looking to start a fight, just a discussion. I reserve the right to change my predictions as many times as I want before the season starts. NFC West: Seattle Seahawks. They won 11 games last season, and with the…

July 15, 2013

Which team is the Super Bowl sleeper?

I know most of you think the 49ers are going to win the Super Bowl this season. For the sake of discussion, let’s say they don’t. In that case, which team would be your Super Bowl sleeper? Here’s what’s Daniel Jeremiah tweeted last night: “Just talked to an exec about the upcoming season…Both of us agreed the NFC > AFC…His SB sleeper? Saints.” The Saints are a good choice….

June 27, 2013

The top five, I mean four, head coaches in the NFL right now

I’m sitting here at my dinner table wondering who are the top-five head coaches in the NFL right now? I can think of only four. John Harbaugh. The current title holder. When he took over the Ravens in 2008, that franchise hadn’t won a playoff game since 2001. Since 2008, the Ravens are 9-4 in the postseason. John Harbaugh is the most consistently good head coach in the NFL right…

February 13, 2013

Top 5 head coaches: Does Jim Harbaugh make the cut?

Let’s rank the top-5 head coaches in the NFL and see why Jim Harbaugh, with all due respect, doesn’t yet make the cut. I base my rankings on productivity and evaluation and utilization of personnel in good times as well as bad.  Who gets the most out of what they have and who can motivate the players to be the best they can be even when times are tough or…

October 24, 2012

Top-5 head coaches in the NFL

Who are the top-five head coaches in the NFL? Let’s start the discussion by listing coaches who used to be in the top-five but aren’t any more: Jeff Fisher, Mike Shanahan and Sean Payton. Am I leaving anyone out? Fisher’s a defensive guy who hasn’t coached a dominant defense in quite a while. Shanahan’s an offensive guy who hasn’t coached a dominant offense since John Elway was a quarterback. And…

May 18, 2012

Gregg Williams’ 49ers bounty

If you haven’t heard Gregg Williams abhorrent, vile, criminal rant he gave before the Niners-Saints playoff game, I’m linking to it here. Warning – the audio is profane and disturbing. Michael Silver broke the story this morning. He’s a great reporter, and the NFL is a more honest institution because of him. Thank you, Michael. Williams needs to be banned for life and brought up on criminal chargers. Sean Payton…

April 5, 2012

Why Saints case matters (Lowell column)

My dad followed up and wrote a second column about the Saints bounty scandal. This one directly addresses many arguments he received from readers on behalf of the bums – Sean Payton, Gregg Williams, and NFL rule-breakers in general. These readers blame the league, or “the system,” and prefer not to single out. That’s football, they say. It’s a violent sport. Nonsense. It’s supposed to be civilized, too. It’s not…

March 6, 2012

NFL should ban bounty hunters (Lowell column)

My dad wrote his Sunday column for the Santa Rosa Press Democrat about the New Orleans Saints and their bounty program for knocking opposing players out of the game. My dad doesn’t think this scandal is overblown – he thinks it’s serious. I do, too. Football is supposed to be a sport, not war. It’s physical, not dirty. There’s a difference. My dad proposes lifetime banishment from the NFL for…

March 4, 2012

Steve Young on the Niners defense: “They’ll figure out a way to keep that score 24 or less.”

Ralph Barbieri and Tom Tolbert interviewed Steve Young on the KNBR this afternoon, and here’s what Young said about the Niners’ upcoming matchup with the New Orleans Saints. TOLBERT: What’s Alex Smith going through this week? What was it like for you your first home playoff game as a starter? YOUNG: “Well, way different from me, Tom, because I’d been around so long.  I think we had nine playoff games…

January 11, 2012

Sean Payton breaks down the Niners

New Orleans Saints head coach Sean Payton spoke on a conference call with Bay Area writers Tuesday afternoon. Here’s what he said. Q: How much of a contrast is there between these two teams? So much is made of your high-powered offense and this defense you’ll be facing. PAYTON: “I think that San Francisco as has done a great job – not only defensively but as a team, of taking…

January 10, 2012

Jim Harbaugh on the Saints, his relationship with Sean Payton, and more

SANTA CLARA – Here’s the transcript of Jim Harbaugh’s Monday press conference, courtesy of the 49ers. What kind of work was accomplished Saturday night after you knew that you would be playing the Saints? “Just watching the game. The coaches were working on their individual positions.” Did you put in the game plan pretty much Saturday night and Sunday? “It’s, as it always is, it’s a work in progress.” You…

January 9, 2012