NFL

Ranking The NFL Head Coach/QB Combos- Best of the Best

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Football is the ultimate team sport.  With that said, the quarterback is not only the most important position in the game, but in all of sports.  What makes a great quarterback work well is usually the relationship he has with his head coach, even if the coach knows just to leave his star alone.

To get you fully prepared for the NFL season we are continuing our countdown series as we move to the best head coach/quarterback combinations.

In our first volume, we ranked the worst head coach/quarterback combinations entering the 2015 season.

We moved up the list just a bit in volume two, further along in volume three, we got to the middle of the pack in volume four, and into the Top 10 in volume five. 

Just missing the very top of the list were these head coach/ QB combos, and now we move on to the best of the best.

4. Seattle Seahawks- Pete Carroll/ Russell Wilson

It’s difficult to argue with the success that Pete Carroll has had since he named Russell Wilson his starting quarterback as a rookie in 2012.  Carroll made a move that few coaches would make, and the rewards have been fruitful.

Carroll is a master motivator while being a positive guy that most NFL players love playing for.  He’s simply a perfect fit for his team and his city.

Speaking of perfect fits, Wilson is a very talented quarterback, but he wouldn’t experience the same degree of success in most cities.  He makes plays with his feet and just enough plays with his arm to complement one of the best defenses in football.

It’s not a matter of who carries who in Seattle, it’s a family type of atmosphere where everything seems to work.

3. Green Bay Packers- Mike McCarthy/ Aaron Rodgers

When you get this high on the list, you’re picking at straws on where to rank the elite of the elite.  Everyone involved in football will tell you that Aaron Rodgers is the very best quarterback in the game.  He’s well on his way to being one of the greatest to ever play the game.

So why aren’t the Packers No. 1 on the list? 

Mike McCarthy is holding Rodgers back.  They’ve wasted the last few years of legendary quarterback play with mediocre at best coaching when the postseason comes around.

Rodgers is going to have to overcome the loss of wide receiver Jordy Nelson this year as well as the poor coaching of McCarthy if he’s going to capture his second Super Bowl title.

2. Baltimore Ravens- John Harbaugh/ Joe Flacco

I know it sounds crazy to have the combination of John Harbaugh and Joe Flacco ranked No. 2, but they are as consistent as anyone in the business.

Harbaugh has only missed the playoffs once in his head coaching career and every time he’s been in the playoffs the Ravens have won at least one game.  He is truly one of the elite coaches in football and if he were to come available, 30 teams would dump their guy to get him.

Flacco doesn’t always look like the quarterback you want in October, but in a big game there are very few guys, if any that you’d rather have.  He gets the most out of his ability and plays his best football on the biggest stages, including the Super Bowl.

Is Flacco elite?  Absolutely.

1. New England Patriots- Bill Belichick/ Tom Brady

There’s no surprise that the legendary Patriots combination is No. 1 on the list.  Whether it’s Belichick or Brady who’s responsible for the decade and a half of success, it really doesn’t matter.

Belichick gets the absolute most out of the least and manages to downplay all sorts of distractions along the way.

Brady has only played with one other Hall of Famer on offense (for only a couple years) and he should go down as the greatest quarterback ever.

These two are clearly on a different plane and we will never again see the success that they’ve displayed.


About Charlie Bernstein

Charlie Bernstein

Charlie Bernstein is the managing football editor for Football Insiders and has covered the NFL for over a decade.  Charlie has hosted drive time radio for NBC and ESPN affiliates in different markets around the country, along with being an NFL correspondent for ESPN Radio and WFAN.  He has been featured on the NFL Network as well as Sirius/XM NFL Radio and has been published on Fox Sports, Sports Illustrated, ESPN as well as numerous other publications.