December 9, 2012; Landover, MD, USA; Washington Redskins NFL defensive coordinator Jim Haslett talks on the sidelines against the Baltimore Ravens at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Head coaches aren’t the only ones who fall under scrutiny when a team is struggling. NFL coordinators are just as endangered in a league tough on everybody. Which prominent names are in trouble?
Perry Fewell – Defensive Coordinator – New York Giants – Seat: Warm
Sometimes a guy gets just the right medicine at the right time. Perry Fewell should emphatically thank the Minnesota Vikings for trotting out the clearly unprepared Josh Freeman on Monday Night. As a result the New York Giants surrendered no points and cooled the seat that had been heating up for Fewell over a six-game losing streak. He is by no means out of the woods but a couple more victories could calm the masses.
Mel Tucker – Defensive Coordinator – Chicago Bears – Seat: Warm
No one will overlook the fact Mel Tucker walked into a tough situation. He inherited a good defense but one that was aging in a lot of area and having to play for the first time without their two leaders in Lovie Smith and Brian Urlacher. Throw a ridiculous rash of injuries on top of that and it’s no wonder the unit has crumbled. Still, Tucker must at least stop the bleeding. He can’t let his unit keep giving up 40 points a week and hope to keep his job. After all, the best coordinators can adjust to injuries and find success.
Jim Haslett – Defensive Coordinator – Washington Redskins – Seat: Hot
Ironically the guy that beat Tucker in week seven is probably in hotter water. Jim Haslett doesn’t have near the number of injury excuses with the Washington Redskins. His defense is just that bad. Giving up 24 points in a single half to a 34-year old backup quarterback who hasn’t seen action since 2011 pretty much says it all. The unit can’t seem to do anything well, especially tackle. Robert Griffin III saved the Redskins from a humiliating defeat in the final seconds but Haslett could be under serious fire if the defense can’t improve before the season ends.
Jedd Fisch – Offensive Coordinator – Jacksonville Jaguars – Seat: Mild
Averaging 10.9 points per game is the quickest way to get an offensive coordinator fired but there is no question Jedd Fisch got handed the keys to a broken-down old station wagon when Gus Bradley brought him in to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Until they fix their historically bad quarterback position currently headlined by Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne, there really is so much Fisch can do until, as Bradley put it, the overall talent level of the team is increased. So for the time being every coach is safe.
Todd Haley – Offensive Coordinator – Pittsburgh Steelers – Seat: Warm
Back-to-back victories have gotten people to talk less about Todd Haley of late but the overall problems remains. The Pittsburgh Steelers offense is not executing at the level many had hoped when the season started. They only average about 17 points per game and still can’t run the ball, averaging 74 yards. Not all of that is on Haley but the question lingers on about his fit with the personnel the team has in place. Ben Roethlisberger isn’t the kind of quarterback who has thrived in Haley’s offense, like Kurt Warner. Until the two reach a common ground the Steelers offense can’t expect to win games when asked.
Mike Sullivan – Offensive Coordinator – Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Seat: Hot
It was bad enough for Mike Sullivan with Josh Freeman and then switching over to rookie Mike Glennon at quarterback. Now he is being asked to execute his offense without Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin. Everyone knew the Tampa Bay Buccaneers were in a bad way but not having Martin could send their already bad offense into a death spiral. With Greg Schiano on a hot seat of his own, it’s only natural Sullivan is in the same boat.