Every NFL Team's Best Head Coach of All Time

The best head coach for every NFL team

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There have been many head coaches in NFL history. Some teams have been blessed with stable leadership while others have been searching for the one coach to lead them to victory. It is difficult to compare different eras but winning has always been the standard and allows us a stable benchmark. The following head coaches represent almost every era of football and range from Hall of Fame coaches to innovators to being the best a team has to offer. These are the best head coaches for each NFL team.

Arizona Cardinals – Don Coryell
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He only coached the team from 1973-1977 but went 42-27-1 during that span. He led the Cardinals to an 11-3 mark in 1975. He might not be the winningest coach in team history but he led what is arguably their most exciting teams.

Atlanta Falcons – Dan Reeves
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Reeves only had a 49-59-1 record with the Falcons but he did lead them to a Super Bowl appearance in 1998. He took the helm in 1997 after the Falcons finished 3-13. He went 7-9 in 1997 then went to the Super Bowl with the team in 1998 after going 14-2. He was named AP Coach of the Year in 1998. Reeves gets the nod over Mike Smith for his playoff success.

Baltimore Ravens – John Harbaugh
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There have only been three head coaches since 1996. Harbaugh took the helm in 2008 and has led the team to an 89-63 mark so far in his career and is 10-5 in the playoffs including a Super Bowl XLVII win. The current head coach should only build on his legacy with the team.

Buffalo Bills – Marv Levy
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He went 112-70 from 1986 to 1997 with the Bills and took the team to four straight Super Bowls, a feat that will likely not be repeated in our lifetimes. He won the AFC East seven times. The Bills have not won the division since he retired.

Carolina Panthers – Ron Rivera
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Rivera currently sits at a 57-45-1 record with the Panthers, the highest winning percentage among Panthers’ coaches. He also has one Super Bowl appearance, a feat matched by John Fox. Rivera also led the Panthers to their winningest season, a 15-1 year in 2015.

Chicago Bears – George Halas
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With all due respect to Mike Ditka it is Halas who serves as the standard for Bears coaches. He coached the team from 1920-1967 and owns a 314-148-31 mark that includes six championships and a spot in Canton. Halas began his coaching career at 25-years-old while he was still a player.

Cincinnati Bengals – Sam Wyche
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His record might be under .500 at 61-66 but Wyche revolutionized the Bengals’ offense with his no-huddle approach. His offenses consistently ranked among the best in the NFL and he did take the Bengals to the Super Bowl, just their second appearance in team history.

Cleveland Browns – Paul Brown
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The Browns get their moniker from this coach who led them to a 158-48-8 record. He won four AAFC championships, three NFL championships and seven NFL Conference championships. He is also the first coach to integrate his team and is considered by many the father of modern football with his training and instruction. He and the Browns also went undefeated in 1948.

Dallas Cowboys – Tom Landry
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Landry led the Cowboys to a 250-162-6 record, an impressive .607 win percentage. He won two Super Bowls and led the team to five Super Bowl appearances. The first coach of the Cowboys shaped them into what would become one of the most dominant franchises in NFL history.

Denver Broncos – Mike Shanahan
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It wasn’t until Shanahan teamed with John Elway that the Broncos finally won a Super Bowl. In fact, they won two Super Bowls in a row. From 1995-2008, Shanahan coached the Broncos to an impressive 138-86 record.

Detroit Lions – Raymond “Buddy” Parker
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Parker led the Lions from 1951-56 and led them to back-to-back NFL Championships in 1952 and 1953. He is also credited with inventing the two-minute offense. The Lions went 47-23-2 under Parker’s tutelage.

Green Bay Packers – Vince Lombardi
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Could there really be another choice here? Lombardi and the Packers won back-to-back NFL Championships in 1961 and 1962 and won a third in 1965. Then he won back-to-back Super Bowl titles in 1966 and 1967. His record stands at 89-29-4, an unbelievable .754 winning percentage.

Houston Texans – Gary Kubiak
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The Texans have had four head coaches in their short history. Kubiak is the winningest and longest-tenured coach in team history so be default he gets the nod. He owns a 61-64 career mark and owns a 2-2 mark in the playoffs. Bill O’Brien gets the runner-up nod and could take over this spot in a few years.

Indianapolis Colts – Tony Dungy
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Dungy led the Colts to their only Super Bowl win and his winning percentage of .759 is better than Don Shula’s mark of .725. Dungy led the Colts to an 85-27 record from 2002-2008 making him the winningest head coach in team history.

Jacksonville Jaguars – Tom Coughlin
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Coughlin is the first coach in Jaguars’ history. He took over an expansion team and went 68-60 in eight seasons, won two division titles and led the Jaguars to four playoff appearances and made two AFC Championship game appearances. That is pretty good for an expansion team.

Kansas City Chiefs – Hank Stram
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Stram led the Chiefs to a 124-76 record with three AFL Championships and one Super Bowl win. Stram, a Hall of Famer, pioneered the two-tight end offense, stack defense with linebackers behind the linemen and a mobile quarterback pocket.

Los Angeles Chargers – Sid Gillman
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Gillman is the winningest coach in Chargers’ history with a record of 86-53-6. He won an AFL Championship in 1963 and is known for revolutionizing the game of football with his offensive schemes. The team’s first head coach is still their greatest.

Los Angeles Rams – George Allen
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In the seven years prior to Allen being named head coach the Rams were 25-65. Allen took the helm in 1966 and went 8-6 on his way to posting a 49-17-4 record over five years as head coach. The Rams never posted a losing season under his tutelage and he changed the culture of the franchise. He might not have the playoff laurels but he deserves the credit for changing the fortunes of the franchise.

Miami Dolphins – Don Shula
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The 1972 season would be enough for him to claim the top spot among Dolphins’ coaches. Shula went 257-133-2 from 1970-1995 at the helm. He remains the only coach to win a Super Bowl on an undefeated season. In his 26 seasons he made the playoffs 16 times, won five AFC Championships and won two Super Bowls.

Minnesota Vikings – Bud Grant
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Grant became the second coach in Vikings’ history in 1967 and led the team until 1985. During that span he led the team to a 158096-5 record, won an NFL Championship and went to the Super Bowl three times.

New England Patriots – Bill Belichick
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Five Super Bowl wins, 7 AFC Championships, three AP Coach of the Year Awards and Belichick isn’t done yet. His winning percentage currently sits at .738 with a 203-72 record. He is 25-9 in the playoffs. He has just one losing season in his tenure leading the team and that came 17 years ago.

New Orleans Saints – Sean Payton
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Payton just became the winningest coach in team history, notching his 94th win to pass Jim Mora. He also led the Saints to their only Super Bowl win, has three division titles and won the AP Coach of the Year Award in 2006.

New York Giants – Bill Parcells
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There are several candidates for the Giants including Tom Coughlin, Allie Sherman and Jim Lee Howell. However, Parcells gets the nod because of his .611 winning percentage, two Super Bowl wins and changing the culture of the Giants completely around from laughing stock to Super Bowl winner. He was 8-3 in the playoffs and had only two losing seasons.

New York Jets – Weeb Ewbank
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Ewbank coached from 1963-1973 and went 71-77-6. However, he did win an AFL Championship and led the team to their surprising Super Bowl III win. He is the only coach to win championships in the AFL and NFL.

Oakland Raiders – John Madden
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From 1969 to 1978 John Madden was the best coach in the game. During that time he went 103-32-7, a .763 winning percentage. He never had a losing season, won a Super Bowl in 1976 and went to the playoffs eight times. He created a winning culture in Oakland that lasted even after he retired and made the Raiders one of the best teams of the 1970s and early 1980s.

Philadelphia Eagles – Andy Reid
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Reid was named AP Coach of the Year in 2002 and led the Eagles to a 130-93-1 record from 1999-2012. He only went to one Super Bowl in 2004. He led the Eagles to four straight NFC Championship games from 2001-2004 and won four consecutive division championships during that same span, the longest streak in Eagles’ history.

Pittsburgh Steelers – Chuck Noll
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Noll led the Steelers from 1969-1991 and won four Super Bowls while leading the Steelers to a 193-148-1 mark. He has the most wins of any Steelers coach and built the Steelers into one of the best franchises in football.

San Francisco 49ers – Bill Walsh
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From 1979-1988 Walsh went 92-59-1 and won three Super Bowls. He built the 49ers into a dynasty. George Seifert might have more wins and a better win percentage but Walsh effectively built those teams. Walsh is also credited with creating the West Coast offense which has become a staple in the NFL.

Seattle Seahawks – Pete Carroll
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Carroll has led the Seahawks to a 74-43-1 record since taking the helm in 2010. He won the Super Bowl in 2013 and went to the Super Bowl again in 2014. Carroll is on pace to become the winningest coach in Seahawks history, a title held currently by Mike Holmgren with 86.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Tony Dungy
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Jon Gruden took the team Dungy built and won the Super Bowl one year after Dungy left. Dudngy went 54-42 leading the Bucs and while Gruden has the playoff success, his only wins came in the year he won the Super Bowl. In the four years before Dungy arrived the Bucs went 23-41. He changed the culture of the team and Gruden only has three more wins than Dungy despite coaching in 16 more games.

Tennessee Titans – Bum Phillips
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Jeff Fisher might have the wins but Phillips, who coached the Oilers from 1975-1980, has a higher winning percentage at .611. Phillips took a team that went 9-33  in the three years prior to his arrival. Phillips would finish his Oilers career at 55-35 and won four playoff games. He made the Oilers into one of the best teams in the AFC and battled the Steelers in back-to-back AFC Championship games.

Washington Redskins – Joe Gibbs
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His first of two stints with the team saw Gibbs lead the Redskins to a 124-60 mark and he went 16-5 in the playoffs during that span. All told, Gibbs went 154-94 in the regular season and 17-7 in the playoffs in his two stints. He won three Super Bowls and appeared in a fourth.