NFL Coaches Fight Club: The Tournament
NFL Coaches Fight Club: the Tournament. Because we have nothing better to do than predict what might happen if head coaches started punching each other in the face.
Consider this hypothetical: what if two coaches met in a dark alley and threw down in a no-holds-barred brawl? Who would emerge victorious?
First, some background: back when I was in high school, when my friends and I were pretty creative in finding ways to avoid actually paying attention in class, we'd create brackets (think NCAA Tournament) where we'd pit our teachers against each other**. Whoever we thought would win in a fight advanced to the next round. It always ended with our offensive line coach against our wrestling coach in the finals and a huge argument as to who would come out on top.
Anyway, last week, the Back Porch staff somehow ended up discussing whether Rex Ryan or Tom Cable would win in a old school playground scrap. I passed along the above information, and shortly after that, an idea was born -- NFL Coaches Fight Club: the Tournament.
The premise is pretty simple. It's a single-elimination tournament, pitting one NFL coach against another in fictional fisticuffs. Readers will vote and the winner advances to the next round. (I feel compelled to point out right now that if you don't like to have fun, please leave now. This isn't for everyone.)
What we'll do is put up an individual "Tale of the Tape"-type post for each matchup over the course of the next few weeks. Each post will have a "who ya got?" poll where readers can vote for who they think would advance. We'll do it until we have a champion.
The No. 1 overall seed -- through Back Porch staff voting -- was Samurai Mike Singletary in a landslide. The Hall of Fame middle linebacker draws maligned Redskins coach Jim Zorn in the first round and faces a bracket with the lowest No. 2 seed.
All of the first round matchups are listed below with seeding in parentheses. The bouts are sorted into four regions, which are named for four relatively recent coaches we think would have been tough outs in this tournament.
The Mike Ditka Region
Mike Singletary, 49ers (1) vs. Jim Zorn, Redskins (8)
Mike Smith, Falcons (4) vs. Tom Coughlin, Giants (5)
Jeff Fisher, Titans (2) vs. Josh McDaniels, Broncos (7)
Marvin Lewis, Bengals (3) vs. Jim Mora Jr., Seahawks (6)
The Mike Tice Region
Rex Ryan, Jets (1) vs. Norv Turner, Chargers (8)
Todd Haley, Chiefs (4) vs. Sean Payton, Saints (5)
Tony Sparano, Dolphins (2) vs. Jim Caldwell, Colts (7)
Andy Reid, Eagles (3) vs. John Fox, Panthers (6)
The Bill Cowher Region
Tom Cable, Raiders (1) vs. Wade Phillips, Cowboys (8)
Steve Spagnuolo, Rams (4) vs. Bill Belichick, Patriots (5)
Raheem Morris, Buccaneers (2) vs. Eric Mangini, Browns (7)
Jim Schwartz, Lions (3) vs. John Harbaugh, Ravens (6)
The Jim Haslett Region
Jack Del Rio, Jaguars (1) vs. Dick Jauron, Bills (8)
Ken Whisenhunt, Cardinals (4) vs. Mike McCarthy, Packers (5)
Mike Tomlin, Steelers (2) vs. Brad Childress, Vikings (7)
Lovie Smith, Bears (3) vs. Gary Kubiak, Texans (6)
**Special hat-tip to my boy, DFJ, for originally coming up with the Fight Tournament idea