Time for NFL head coaches to vacation, read a book, golf, share special time with families — and then tell ‘em ‘see ya’ next year’ once football hits overdrive next month.
These coaches travel with extra baggage. No matter how near or far the 32 trek to seek relaxation, their minds will occasionally float here …
Steve Wilks, Cardinals – I’m going to shape this team into my identity. I’ve got to make sure they know exactly what that is. Do they? Probably not. But they will.
Dan Quinn, Falcons – The Brotherhood lives! Except maybe Julio Jones isn’t feeling the bond. This is a problem. Gotta figure out how to keep him engaged.
Sean McDermott, Bills – Playoffs in the first year. Now the second year with some new pieces, but I know I need more. How would I sell not making the playoffs my second year as still being on track?
Ron Rivera, Panthers - I’m the only coach in the league with new ownership. What does this guy (David Tepper) want? How do I give it? Is there anything a coach can do with a new owner who might want his own coach? It often unfolds that way. How do I change that?
Matt Nagy, Bears – This quarterback, Mitchell Trubisky, is the whole ball of wax. I think we can score points, but can we stop anybody?
Marvin Lewis, Bengals – I decided to come back. Why did I do that?
Hue Jackson, Browns – I’m gone if we can’t win a single game. Again.
Jason Garrett, Cowboys – If we don’t roar into the playoffs am I toast, regardless of the positive messaging I’m getting from the Joneses?
Vance Joseph, Broncos – I’ve got a veteran quarterback. I’ve got two dynamite edge rushers I can cook with. We’re closer than people think. I think.
Matt Patricia, Lions – How do I gut the losing mentality of this franchise?
Mike McCarthy, Packers — Drastically changed my staff, scuttled away some special, veteran players and now what? How do I keep my franchise quarterback on schedule and band this group?
Bill O’Brien, Texans — Deshaun Watson, please stay healthy, stay healthy, stay healthy, stay healthy …
Frank Reich, Colts — Andrew Luck, please be able to throw it, throw it, throw it … and throw it some more …
Doug Marrone, Jaguars – We’re tough enough. Are we smart and humble enough? And how much does that matter with this generation of players?
Andy Reid, Chiefs – I’m sure Patrick Mahomes is ready. How do get him on and keep him on an upswing?
Adam Gase, Dolphins – Culture change underway. Is it enough?
Bill Belichick, Patriots – It’s my 18th year here. Are pockets of players tuning me out? Does it matter? I’ll figure it out.
Sean Payton, Saints – Our defense is better. Gotta create a way to get even more from that group.
Pat Shurmur, Giants – I’m an adult. How do I get the people around me to be the same? I know Eli can still play. I think Eli can still play. Can Eli still play?
Todd Bowles, Jets – Hooray! I’ve finally got some quarterback depth. Meet me at the pool. Margaritas on me!
Jon Gruden, Raiders – I’ve returned. I’m a target. They’re really gunning for me on all fronts. I like it. Very Raiders-like. I’ll show ‘em.
Doug Pederson, Eagles – Encore? Yes we can. What do I do now with Carson Wentz to elevate him and protect him?
Mike Tomlin, Steelers – I’ve got to get this team mentally sharp and united. How do I keep cracks from becoming fissures?
Sean McVay, Rams – We’re faster, we’re stronger. I think we’re better. How do I make it translate?
Anthony Lynn, Chargers – What a lousy start last year (0-4). Yet, we finished 9-7. How do I alter the slow start? What are we going to do differently offensively without a huge, planned centerpiece of our offense, injured tight end Hunter Henry?
Kyle Shanahan, 49ers – How do I turn this slow build into a faster one?
Pete Carroll, Seahawks – Yikes! Lots of new faces. But lots of old baggage gone. I am still relevant with this group, right? How do I ensure that?
Dirk Koetter, Buccaneers – We’re spinning here. I was hired to get Jameis Winston right. He’s not. Yet. I’ve got to figure this out.
Mike Vrabel, Titans – This is a tough team. I’m going to make them tougher. Yes, that’s my blueprint. I’ve got to remember it.
Jay Gruden, Washington - I’ve convinced myself that Alex Smith is an upgrade over Cousins. Now to prove it, first, to these players.