The LA Rams are reportedly losing a trio of positional coaches to the Denver Broncos. Well, somewhere in Minnesota, the Vikings are saying: “Hold my beer.” It seems that they are about to poach a similar number of positional coaches from the LA Rams. We know that offensive coordinator Kevin O’Connell is their new head coach.
But he is bringing some associates with him. Reports suggest that he will be hiring LA Rams tight end coach Wes Phillips to become his new offensive coordinator, and will be bringing Rams offensive assistant Chris O’Hara with him to fill an undisclosed role with the Vikings.
That is just two NFL teams, and they have seemingly accounted for the loss of six LA Rams positional coaches.
Should the NFL consider a limit to how many coaches one team can poach from another?
Hey, I’m almost okay with the LA Rams supplying coaches to other teams. It forces the Rams to continue to import fresh ideas, new personalities, recharged energies into the coaching room and into the organization. But should the NFL consider a limit as to how many coaches one team can hire from another team?
Two teams. Six coaches. If that same ratio went on, it would become three teams for nine coaches. Four teams for 12 coaches. While it’s great to be promoted, what about the players left behind?
Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not trying to choke off the talent pipeline from the LA Rams coaching staff to jumpstart coaching rebuilds of so many other NFL teams. I’m simply trying to install a governor in the process.
How would that work?
A limit to how many coaches can be hired away by one team. Let’s make that limit two. If that would take place, then the Rams would be facing losing four coaches, not six coaches.
Much of the integrity in a team is not just the techniques, the X’s and O’s on the whiteboard, but the relationships and trust that grow between the coaches and the players over the course of a season. When one team can poach an unlimited number of coaches under the guise of promotions, they gain an unintended advantage in the NFL Free Agency market, dangling the chance to work with former coaches to attract potential free agents.
Hey, one coach? Okay. Two coaches? That’s fine. But when the number grows to three-plus coaches? That is an unfair advantage. Unfortunately, the LA Rams are one of the most negatively impacted teams each off-season.
I propose that if a team hires the third coach from the same team in the same off-season, they should forfeit a seventh-round pick (or its equivalent) to the other team. Four coaches? Upgrade the pick to a sixth-round pick. While it would not eliminate the process, it would most certainly compensate the team that is making the entire NFL better.
As the NFL seeks ways to make hiring practices for head coaches more equal, they could level the playing field in any number of ways.