The Impact of a Head Coach
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The Impact of a Head Coach

Two teams, but only one Super Bowl trophy.

The Impact of a Head Coach
Fox Sports

It's Super Bowl time in America, and once again, Tom Brady has brought his New England Patriots squad back to the promised land. On the other side of the ball, the Atlanta Falcons are rather unfamiliar with this stage. For comparison's sake, Tom Brady has won twice as many Super Bowls than the Atlanta Falcons have been to. Both of these teams flew rather under the radar this past season, and now they've both ended up on the biggest stage after dominating performances against teams in their respective conferences. How they got to this point seems fairly uniform when looking at this season, but the real reason behind both are the jobs done by the head coaches.

Dan Quinn, the head coach for the Falcons, had never previously occupied a head coaching job in the NFL before heading to Atlanta two seasons ago. He inherited a six-win, fairly mediocre program and led them to a 5-0 start his rookie season, only to see them fall off at the end. This year, he turned Atlanta into a serious contender with one of the most historically dominant offenses in NFL history. Considering this is the same core group of players (Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, etc.) that went 6-10 two seasons prior, it is no question that Quinn has had a profound impact in a short period of time.

My senior year playing high school basketball, we had a similar situation happen, as I mentioned in one of my earlier articles. We had a new coach coming off of a losing season, but because of the change in coaching, the team felt so much more confident and excited as a whole. We came out on fire to start that season, much like the Falcons did two seasons ago with Quinn as their new head coach. As another example, look at what happened to the Michigan Football program with Harbaugh running things for only two seasons. Harbaugh has led a team coming from a losing culture to back-to-back ten win seasons, not to mention being a couple of calls away from a spot in the College Football Playoff. I'm sure the hype around a new head coach committed to advancing the program forward is uniform, when you look at it from these perspectives.

On the other side of the ball, the New England Patriots have demonstrated the model for all professional sports teams with their level of stability. Bill Belichick has been the head coach there for over fifteen seasons, and even when Brady hasn't played, he's still found ways to get the team to win. No one has been able to figure the Patriots out, especially in their division, and that is why Brady is going to his seventh Super Bowl. However, it comes back to coaching, as there's no way this Patriots team goes anywhere without Belichick's wisdom and cultivation of Brady into being debatably one of the best quarterbacks of all time.

As we look a these examples above, the two main ones being on display next week, maybe we all need to acknowledge the most important position in sports to be on the sidelines. Head coaching dictates whether the program will progress or regress, whether it's a quick change in Quinn's case, or the stable excellence of Belichick's teams.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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