How much do NFL head coaches make – including LA Rams McVay?

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports /

Behind the curtain

Okay. Who truly loves to wade through facts and figures?  Well, sure, those acutely aware accountants and financial guys (did I mention that I was one in a past life?), but for the most part, it’s just the makings of a snoozer. But what if that data was paired up with, say, the 2020 NFL standings?

We’ll start with the NFC because, well, it’s the NFC, the conference of the LA Rams. So let’s compare teams and their records with reported head coach salaries.


NFC West

Seattle Seahawks    12-4     Pete Caroll,   $11 million
LA Rams                     10-6      Sean McVay,   $8.5 million
Arizona Cardinals        8-8     Kliff Kingsbury, $5.5 million
San Francisco 49ers  6-10   Kyle Shanahan,  $9 million

Pete Carroll, Seattle Seahawks,  $11 million: The NFL’s oldest coach signed a 5-year contract extension through 2021. In 11 seasons, his team is always either in or sniffing the playoffs. His track record speaks volumes.

Sean McVay, LA Rams. The Rams announced in July 2019 that they had extended the contract of coach Sean McVay. Team owner Stan Kroenke expressed extreme confidence in McVay at the time that the extension was announced

Kliff Kingsbury, Arizona Cardinals, $5.5 million: Heading into his third year now with the Cardinals, his seat might be warming up if he doesn’t produce.

Kyle Shanahan, San Francisco 49ers: After his team’s Super Bowl appearance, inked a six-year contract extension reportedly worth $9 million a year, although specifics of his contract have not been revealed. Educated guess.

NFC South

New Orleans Saints       12-4       Sean Payton, $9 million
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 11-5       Bruce Arians, $8 million
Carolina Panthers            5-11      Matt Rhule,    $8.5 million
Atlanta Falcons                 4-12      Arther Smith, TBD, estimation of $5 million

Sean Payton, New Orleans Saints, $9 million: Signed to a 5 year, $45-million contract. Perennial playoff contender.

Bruce Arians, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, $8 million: Reigning Super Bowl champion coach. Lead a moribund franchise to its second Super Bowl victory, and first Lombardi trophy with quarterback Tom Brady.  ‘Nuf said.

Matt Rhule, $8.5 million: His contract sent shock waves through the NFL as he signed a seven-year, $60 million deal, but had never coached an NFL game in his career. His fellow coaches, however, surely celebrated his deal because a rising tide raises all the boats moored in the harbor.

Arthur Smith, Atlanta Falcons: First-year head coach, no details publicly disclosed.