While players (namely quarterbacks) tend to get the glory when an NFL team does well, it’s more than fair to say that every good team is led by a truly great coach. Coaches have the ability to both inspire their players and put them in their place when necessary (let’s face it, some NFL players are are Mariah Carey-level divas.) These men have to walk the line between being enforcers and father-figures to guys who come from all walks of life. Today, we’re going to take a look at the ten winningest coaches in NFL history.
1. Don Shula, who coached the Baltimore Colts for 7 years and the Miami Dolphins for 26 (that’s longer than I’ve been alive, folks), had 328 wins over the course of his incredible career. Shula coached from 1963-1995.
2. George Halas coached the Chicago Bears for an astounding 40 years from 1920 (when they were still known as the Decatur Staleys) to 1967 (there was a break from 1942-1946 in case you were confused about the math.) Halas racked-up 318 wins during his lengthy NFL tenure.
3. Tom Landry, famed head coach of the Dallas Cowboys, spent 29 years on the sidelines for the team. Landry had 250 wins between 1960-1988.
4. Curly Lambeau, for whom Lambeau Stadium is named (obviously), had 226 wins while coaching the Green Bay Packers for 29 years, the Chicago Cardinals (don’t worry, I don’t know anything about them either) for 2, and the Washington Redskins for 2. Lambeau’s career spanned four decades, from 1921-1953.
5. Paul Brown, one of Ohio’s favorite sons, coached the Cleveland Browns for 17 years and the Cincinnati Bengals for 8. Brown had a total of 213 wins, plus he has a stadium named after him, which should be everyone’s goal in life.
6. Marty Schottenheimer had 200 total wins while coaching 4 NFL teams over the course of 21 years. At various points, Schottenheimer led the Cleveland Browns, the Kansas City Chiefs, the Washington Redskins (for a single season), and the San Diego Chargers.
7. Bill Belichick, the only active coach on this list, has earned 199 wins as the head coach of the Cleveland Browns and (primarily) the New England Patriots. Belichick should easily surpass Schottenheimer this year and, depending how good the Pats are, even move up to the No. 5 spot.
8. Chuck Noll, who coached from 1969-1991, spent his entire coaching career with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Noll led his teams to 193 wins.
9. In 23 years of coaching, Dan Reeves had 190 wins split between the Denver Broncos, the New York Giants, and the Atlanta Falcons.
10. Chuck Knox had 186 wins during the 22 years he spent coaching in the NFL. At various times, Knox was on the sidelines for the Los Angeles Rams, the Buffalo Bills, the Seattle Seahawks, and the Los Angeles Rams (again.)