Colts: How highly should Frank Reich rank among best NFL head coaches?
By Jerry Trotta
The Indianapolis Colts have as promising a future as any team in the NFL, and that can be attributed to the relationship between Chris Ballard and Frank Reich.
While it’s abundantly clear that Ballard is one of the best general managers out there, though his conservative approach to trades and free agency drove some fans insane this offseason, the jury is still out on Reich in terms of where he ranks among the best head coaches.
It goes without saying Reich has all the necessary intangibles — he’s an excellent motivator and an innovate offensive mind who shares a great relationship with almost all of his players — to be mentioned in the tier of elite head coaches.
According to Pro Football Network, Reich is just on the precipice of cracking that tier, as they ranked him No. 7 on their list of best HCs…in the “Still somewhat new but appear to be a great tier” (that wasn’t a typo), right ahead of Bills rising star Sean McDermott.
That begs the question: how highly should Reich actually rank? Take your Colts hats off for this one.
Where does Colts HC Frank Reich rank among the NFL’s best head coaches?
In all honesty, Pro Football Network might have it spot on here. After all, the only HCs ranked ahead of Reich (in descending order) are Sean McVay, Sean Payton, John Harbaugh, Mike Tomlin, Andy Reid and Bill Belichick, and they’re simply a cut above the rest of their colleagues.
While all of those head coaches have their flaws — some are truly awful at clock management, while others struggle in the game management and x’s and o’s departments — you’d be hard-pressed to list Reich ahead of any of them, most of whom are future Hall of Famers.
Reich took over the coaching reins with the Colts threes years ago and has amassed a 28-20 record to go with two playoff appearances. That’s nothing short of remarkable when you consider Carson Wentz will be his fourth (!) starting quarterback during that span and 2020 was really the first year he was given a competent defense to work with.
Taking that into account, it’s reasonable to assume we’ve yet to witness the best Reich has to offer as a head coach in the NFL. Who knows? If Wentz manages to rediscover his confidence and the Colts make a deep playoff run in a loaded AFC, who’s to say that Reich shouldn’t leapfrog some of the names listed ahead of him?
If we were speaking strictly in terms of the present, however, we’d say that Pro Football Network did well to list Reich as the seventh-best head coach in the NFL. After all, the only coach he could possibly hurdle is McVay and he took the Rams to the Super Bowl just three years ago.