Mike Vrabel wasn’t scared to get in on the action while working out some potential draft picks at Alabama’s pro day earlier today. He hopped in on the sled like a position coach or grad assistant learning the ropes in his first days of the job. I have a feeling we’re going to see a lot of this kind of stuff from him moving forward. After to listening to all of his radio interviews and press conferences surrounding the NFL combine, it’s clear that he is in tune with today’s NFL. He likes to know his players inside and out, and he seems like a guy who will build good relationships with them.
Will that translate into wins at the NFL level, though?
Over the years, the NFL has seen a plethora of “players coaches”. A lot of them are just like Vrabel: young, personable, and well-liked by just about everyone they come in contact with. The most recent success story coming from Sean McVey of the LA Rams. Success in the NFL comes in all shapes and sizes, but the standard that everyone looks to is the Patriots, and Bill Belichick is far from a players coach.
The last ten Super Bowl winning coaches are:
That’s a very diverse list to say the least. In fact, the qualities found in these coaches is so different, I’m not quite sure how to read this data. I’d say at least half of this list is owned by “players coaches”, which bodes well for Vrabel (as long as Bellichick and the Patriots don’t win).
One thing that is common with those head coaches is their quarterback play was really good. Even though players like Flacco, Eli, and Foles aren’t the most dominant quarterbacks in the game, they played out of their minds in those Super Bowl runs. The rest of the list is complete with guys like Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, Big Ben, and Russell Wilson.
It’s obviously too early to tell how Mike Vrabel’s tenure with the Titans will turn out. The players are going to love him, and that’s shown to not be a bad thing in the NFL A lot will depend on if the defense continues to progress, but ultimately, like anything else with the Titans, it seems that the team with ride or die with Marcus Mariota. As much as Vrabel downplays the QB position as “just another part of the team”, I’m not so sure that’s the case.