As I write this, there are five NFL coaches out of work.
Dick Vermeil (Chiefs): Vermeil has retired (again). This saddens me, because I consider him one of the finest coaches of all time, plus a great person too. I have known a few people who have worked with him or knew him personally, and all of them had the highest opinions of him. I hope he gets selected for the NFL Hall of Fame. He has earned it.
Mike Tice (Vikings): Most experts saw this one coming months ago. After the "Love Boat" scandal, which came after Tice's ticket scalping scandal, it was obvious that Tice had lost control of the team.
Don't read too much into the team's recent resurgence. Brad Johnson is a much better quarterback than most teams have given him credit.
Dom Capers (Texans): I always thought it was kind of curious for the Texans to hire Capers as their first coach. Granted, he had taken the expansion Panthers to the playoffs within two years of their first game. However, the way the Panthers flamed out after that should have been a lesson to anyone.
Of course, when the Texans hired former NFL coach Dan Reeves as a "consultant" a few weeks ago, the writing was on the wall for Capers.
Mike Martz (Rams): Rumors have been swirling about problems between Martz and the Rams' front office for some time. When the team decided Martz could not return to the team after his heart problems, it was an obvious prelude to a job termination.
I am sure Martz will find another job soon. However, I still have not decided whether he is a good coach. Considering he took the Rams to the Super Bowl, that at least shows he is a capable coach.
Mike Sherman (Packers): I must admit Sherman lasted longer than I thought he would. A couple of years ago, after the game with the Buccaneers, when Sherman had a nasty confrontation with Warren Sapp after Sapp had hurt one of the Packers, I thought to myself Sherman cannot last. That was just so incredibly stupid.
Don't get me wrong: What Sapp did was wrong. But Sherman is NOT a big guy. Sapp is huge. Plus Sapp didn't play for Sherman. Most head coaches can go up to the defensive linemen who play for them and chew them a new one. But you don't go up to opposing defensive linemen like that. That's just dumb.
Anyone that dumb should NOT be an NFL coach. Period.
COACH WHO IS BURNING UP THE HOT SEAT (i.e. about to be fired): Norv Turner (Raiders).
OTHER COACHES STILL ON THE HOT SEAT: Dick Jauron (Lions), Mike Mularkey (Bills), Jim Haslett (Saints), and Dennis Green (Cardinals).
The only one I would disagree with firing is Dennis Green. Even though the Cardinals only won five games, I think they looked a lot better than many Cardinal teams going back for a lot of years. There is definite improvement there, and I think Green deserves at least one more year to try and make it work.
COACHES WHO MIGHT RETIRE: Bill Parcells (Cowboys) and Joe Gibbs (Redskins).
I don't think either of them should retire. I also think Gibbs might not retire only because the Redskins made the playoffs.
As for Parcells, he is always a threat to retire. The fact the Cowboys didn't make the playoffs may push him into retirement. Frankly, I'd like to see Parcells go back into tv/radio like he was before. I have always found his football analysis to be top-notch.