Football is finally back and with Week 1 completed, all 32 teams gave fans their first impressions for the 2023 season. With 32 head coaches aspiring to lead their teams to a Lombardi trophy, some teams will exceed, meet or fail expectations this season. Teams that often fail expectations evaluate the head coaching position during or after the season. With that being said, here are four NFL head coaches who could be on the hot season in 2023.
#4: Matt Eburflus
There is no denying that Eberflus couldn’t have walked into a worse situation when hired by Chicago prior to the 2022 season. The Bears had very minimal draft capital, limited cap space, and one of the worst rosters in the league. His first season went as expected, finishing 3-14 and finishing the season on a 10-game losing streak. Expectations for this team would change in the offseason with Chicago adding D.J. Moore, Tremaine Edmunds, T.J. Edwards and DeMarcus Walker to revamp a talent-lacking roster from a year ago. One week into the season, the excitement from the fanbase quickly turned into panic as Chicago was embarrassed at home by Green Bay 38-20 to open 2023. Eburflus has been labeled a “defensive mastermind” after his tenure as the Colts’ defensive coordinator, but the Bear’s defense showed zero improvement from last season as Jordan Love shredded their secondary all afternoon. If Chicago’s season doesn’t show any signs of improvement from a year ago, expect the second-year head coach’s seat to get hot at the end of the season.
#3: Josh McDaniels
Hired to attempt the recreation of “The Patriot Way” in Las Vegas, Raiders head coach Josh McDaniels could not have had a worse first year on the job in 2022. Coming off a playoff birth in 2021, Vegas made the splash of the offseason, reuniting all-pro wide receiver Davante Adams with his college quarterback Derek Carr to declare the franchise all in for the 2022 season. In McDaniel’s first season, the Raiders won four fewer games than the season prior, set an NFL record with five losses when holding a double-digit lead and benched their franchise QB, leading to his eventual departure from the franchise. Rumors around the team suggest that many players don’t believe in McDaniels and with another poor showing in 2023, don’t be surprised if Vegas is looking to fill the head coaching vacancy with a new face for 2024.
#2: Brandon Staley
Brandon Staley’s seat is without a doubt the hottest seat in the league right now. The Chargers went into last season with arguably the most loaded roster in football and had their season crumble in the wild-card round, blowing the third-largest lead in NFL playoff history (27-0) to the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Chargers, on paper, have top-tier talent at almost every position on the roster, and yet this team struggles to live up to expectations, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Over the past few seasons, the Chargers have added all-pro caliber playmakers Khalil Mack and J.C. Jackson to pair with defensive anchors Derwin James Jr. and Joey Bosa. Yet, the defense continues to significantly underwhelm, as it did on Sunday to open the 2023 season. In their Week 1 matchup against the Miami Dolphins, the Chargers defense surrendered over 530 yards of total offense in a 36-34 losing effort. Labeled a “defensive guru,” Staley could be out of a job during the season if defensive showings from Week 1 become a habit for Los Angeles.
#1 Ron Rivera
Coming in as one of the most respected coaches across the league, Washington Commanders head coach Ron Rivera was hired to stabilize the culture and lead the team to postseason runs as he did in Carolina. Following the termination of problematic owner Dan Snyder, Washington’s new ownership is going to be focused on delivering results and establishing a winning culture. Rivera’s resume since Cam Newton’s 2015 MVP season is why he could be an early candidate to land on the hot seat in 2023. He has yet to lead a team to a playoff victory since 2015 and has produced five consecutive losing seasons, including the end of his tenure with the Carolina Panthers. If the Commanders can’t show signs of life in a relatively weak NFC this season, don’t rule out the tenured head coach losing his job after the season.